Remodeling magazine just released their annual Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report for 2010-2011 which compares the cost of various types of remodeling projects with their resale value. It provides data for the national averages and for specific regions of the country. At the peak in remodeling value in 2005, the national average percentage of recouped value for all types of projects was 86.7%. This year, the ratio has dropped to 60%, reflecting the instability in the national real estate market due to tight lending practices and uncertainty over foreclosures and distressed properties. Keep in mind that these numbers are driven by the cost of remodeling and the value of homes in all markets.

In our local area, where housing values have remained more stable, the return on remodeling costs is much higher. Some types of projects recoup over 100% of the value when the home is sold. An entry door replacement that cost $1,546, will return $2,029, or 131.30% of the cost in resale value. Similarly, a bathroom remodel that cost $22,014, will return $22,440, or 101.90% of the cost upon sale. Major projects, such as additions and kitchen remodels, while they do not recoup 100% of the cost, are still able to recoup approximately 95% of the cost upon resale. Of note, these figures represent averages for good quality (not luxury) projects. High end projects with expensive finishes and fixtures recoup less overall than projects of good quality.

At the national level, the first 10 places in the ranking are held by 13 projects (includes ties.) It’s a sign of the times that 10 of them are exterior replacement projects such as windows, doors, and siding. Replacement projects have always performed better in resale value than remodeling projects, partly because they are among the least expensive and partly because they are need-based improvements that contribute to the home’s curb appeal and protect the owner’s investment. To read the full article and view charts for all types of remodeling projects and areas of the country, see the Remodeling 2010-11 Cost vs. Value Report on the Remodeling magazine website.

01 Dec 2010



It’s supposed to be “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year” a time of building family traditions and sharing joy. But somehow “peace on earth” morphs into “Run to the shopping center, wrap one more present, and scream at the kids” when holiday pressures and expectations are too much. Our wish for you is to enjoy the simple pleasures of Christmas and to give the gifts of grace and patience to your family and friends, especially when it is hardest to do so.

Some extended families live together year around, and it isn’t always comfortable for everyone. Keep reading for some remodeling ideas that can help multi-generational families live happily together in the same home.

The traditional empty nest syndrome is increasingly giving way in this country to the “crowded nest syndrome.” This term refers to the stress that results when adult children unexpectedly return home — usually for economic reasons — to live with mom and dad, often bringing grandkids with them. Their homecoming may coincide with the arrival of elderly great-grandparents who need special care.

Having a home that provides privacy to the individual members of a multi-generational family is very helpful in keeping the environment harmonious. A bonus room, attic or basement can be converted into an entertainment/rec room for the younger set where their exuberance will not disturb others. Transform a garage or unused sunroom into a grandparents’ suite with a private sitting room, bath and mini-kitchen on the ground level. By staying within a home’s existing footprint, these projects are more economical than additions.

Welcome to the inaugural issue of HammerTimes Online, the electronic edition of Hammerschmidt Construction’s newsletter. In an effort to reduce the amount of paper mail we create, we will no longer print and mail the newsletter to you on a quarterly basis. Instead, we’ll send an electronic newsletter to you each month with current information on topics of interest to Bay Area homeowners and feature articles on remodeling trends.

The newsletters will be sent via Constant Contact and posted in our blog. To assure they are not blocked by your computer’s spam filter, please add both and to your list of safe senders. We hope you enjoy the newsletter and will pass it on to family and friends who would like to receive it.

Warm Regards,

Lynn and John

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