Spruce Up Your Outdoor Space, Find Some Joy

Dated: April 20 2023

Views: 142

Spruce Up Your Outdoor Space, Find Some Joy


As you prepare to spruce up your home this spring and summer, two pieces of research can help you pick the upgrades that will bring you the greatest return on investment. 


Some projects may also bring you joy. 


The 2023 Remodeling Impact Report: Outdoor Features (https://bit.ly/2GJCMrm) from the National Association of REALTORS® looks at the typical cost of 11 outdoor projects, the money homeowners can recover on upgrades when they sell, and the joy score – how much happiness each project brings.


Here are the top five outdoor remodeling projects that brought homeowners the greatest joy and the joy score (on a scale of 1-10) for each.


1.     In-ground pool addition (10)

2.     Landscape lighting (10)

3.     New patio (9.9)

4.     New wood deck (9.8)

5.     Fire feature (9.7)


The top five outdoor projects that brought the greatest cost recovery were:


  1. Standard lawn care service (217%)
  2. Landscape maintenance (104%)
  3. Overall landscape upgrade (100%)
  4. Outdoor kitchen (100%)
  5. New patio (95%)


Though some projects may bring homeowners joy, it doesn't mean that REALTORS® recommend doing them before selling a home. In-ground pools and outdoor kitchens are two examples; just 1% of REALTORS® recommend putting in those features before selling.


With 75% of REALTORS® rating curb appeal as very important in attracting a buyer, it’s not surprising that their top project picks reflect that belief.

Projects with the highest share of REALTORS® recommending them before selling include:

·       Landscape maintenance (74%)

·       Standard lawn care service (53%)

·       Tree care (44%)


Another study, the annual "Remodeling 2023 Cost vs. Value Report" (https://bit.ly/3G2LX7M), gives you a look at the remodeling projects that provide the greatest return on investment.


This year, the report compares the average costs for 23 remodeling projects with the value those projects retain at resale in 150 U.S. markets. 


The project that grabbed the top spot was an HVAC conversion (electrification), meaning swapping an oil or gas furnace for an electric heat pump. With a project cost of $17,747 and a value at sale of $18,366, it delivers the highest ROI: 104%. 


Learn more about heat pumps at Energy Star (https://bit.ly/3nvA3wA), MIT Technology Review (https://bit.ly/3JPPojm), and the U.S. Department of Energy (https://bit.ly/40F4yi3).


Other exterior projects with a high ROI include: 


  • Garage door replacement (102.7%)
  • Manufactured stone veneer (102.3%)
  • Steel entry door replacement (100.9%)
  • Vinyl siding replacement (94.7%) 


The ROI on a sample of interior projects includes: 


  • Minor kitchen remodel/midrange (85.7%)
  • Bath remodel/midrange (66.7%)
  • Bathroom remodel/Universal Design (46%)
  • Bath remodel/upscale (36.7%)
  • Major kitchen remodel/upscale (31.7%)


Lodestone Real Estate
Broker, REALTOR®



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Vivian Ho

Born in Hong Kong, Vivian Ho relocated to the suburb of Detroit with her family at a young age. She went on to study at Michigan State University and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Finance, and t....

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