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presented by the

Atlanta Perimeter Office

January 2010

Now that the Holidays are behind us and you begin looking forward to the New Year, you might be contemplating a Home Improvement project in 2009. But do you know which projects will allow you to recoup the most $$$ when you get ready to sell? For example, are you better off remodeling your basement or remodeling a home office? Well, every year Remodeling Magazine does an annual Cost vs. Value report which summarizes the most popular remodeling projects and provides information such as job cost, resale value of the job and the percent of the cost recouped. This information is provided on the national and regional level, as well as for larger metropolitan areas.

A description of these projects:

the Top 5 Cost vs. Value Projects for Atlanta

Job $

Resale Value

$ Recouped

1. Siding Replacement (fiber-cement) 2. Deck Addition (wood) 3. Minor Kitchen Remodel 4. Window Replacement (vinyl) 5. Major Kitchen Remodel

$13,121 $9,717 $20,943 $10,111 $55,236

$12,789 $8,670 $17,022 $7,820 $42,444

97.5% 89.2% 81.3% 77.3% 76.8%

Replace Siding — Upscale (fiber-cement): Replace 1,250 square feet of existing siding with new fiber-cement siding, factory primed and factory painted. Include all 4/4 and 5/4 trim using either fiber-cement boards or cellular PVC.

Deck Addition (wood): Add a 16-by-20-foot deck using pressure-treated joists supported by 4x4 posts anchored to concrete piers. Install pressure-treated deck boards in a simple linear pattern. Include a built-in bench and planter of the same decking material. Include stairs, assuming three steps to grade. Provide a complete railing system using pressure-treated wood posts, railings, and balusters.

Minor Kitchen Remodel: In a functional but dated 200-square-foot kitchen with 30 linear feet of cabinetry and countertops, leave cabinet boxes in place but replace fronts with new raised-panel wood doors and drawers, including new hardware.

Replace wall oven and cooktop with new energy-efficient models. Replace laminate countertops; install midpriced sink and faucet. Repaint trim, add wall covering, and remove and replace resilient flooring.

Replace Windows (vinyl): Replace 10 existing 3-by-5-foot doublehung windows with insulated vinyl replacement windows. Wrap existing exterior trim as required to match. Do not disturb existing interior trim.

Major Kitchen Remodel: Update an outmoded 200 square foot kitchen with a functional layout of 30 linear feet of semi-custom wood cabinets, including a 3x5 foot island; laminate countertops; and standard double-tub stainless steel sink with standard single-lever faucet. Include energyefficient wall oven, cooktop, ventilation system, built-in microwave, dishwasher, garbage disposal, and custom lighting. Add new resilient flooring. Finish with painted walls, trim and ceiling.


The State of the Market: There Is a Silver Lining AFFORDABILITY IS HIGH

The Housing Affordability Index measures the ability of a typical American family to qualify for a mortgage based on the median-price for an existing single-family home. A score of 100 indicates that a typical family would have the exact amount required based on a 20% down payment and monthly payments of no more than 25% of their household income. Currently, the index is at 135.2, which means the average American family not only can afford to purchase a home, but also will have excess money for living expenses. Another upside, highly desirable real estate markets such as California, Arizona and Florida are becoming more affordable.


With more homes on the market, homebuyers can be more selective than in previous years. During the recent market boom, limited availability and high prices resulted in many people making offers on homes due to fear of being left out of the market. However, in this buyer’s market, house hunters can afford to take their time and make a choice they are fully comfortable with. The State of the Market: There Is a Silver Lining. International buyers infuse the U.S. market. Some real estate agents are reporting that 25% of their transactions are coming from foreign buyers, up from previous estimates of 10%. Many of these wealthy international buyers are looking in coastal markets like New York City, San Diego and Miami. Foreign buyers not only infuse money into our economy, they strengthen and stabilize home prices. “With these prices, you can’t say no!”


Continuing the trend of increased existing home sales, 2009 is expected to produce an additional 6.6% increase in home sales. 2009 will be among one of the strongest transaction years in history with an estimated 5.74 million transactions. This year is also projected to boost new home sales to more than 600,000 transactions. Existing home sales prices are also expected to increase by 3.7% in 2009, with new home sales increasing by 4%.

WAYS TO SPEED UP YOUR SALE 1. Trust your agent to set the right price. A correctly priced home will always draw attention from buyers. 2. Get your house market-ready before you begin showing it so your family can get used to keeping your home clean and beautiful. 3. The more frequently your home is shown, the faster you will find a buyer. Keep your home clean and staged so you can be ready to show your home on short notice. 4. Decide in advance what price and conditions you will find satisfactory. 5. Don’t refuse to lower your asking price. Consult with your agent to keep your home priced realistically.

Source: National Association of Realtors®

Your Home is the Best Long-term Investment

brought to you by:

Yale economist Robert J. Shiller created an index of American housing values going back to 1890. If you track the value of housing over time you see

Jane Agent

a positive trend. This chart presents housing values over 116 years, factoring

770-555-1234 Cell

inflation adjusted to today’s dollars), an equivalent standard house dipped to

770-394-2131 Office

out the effects of inflation. The 1890 benchmark is 100 on the index ($100,000

$200 $190 $180 $170 $160 $150 $140 $130 $120 $110 $100

$66,000 in 1920 and would have reached $199,000 in 2006.

WW1 $130 $120 $110 $100 $90 $80 $70 $60 1890




Great WWII Depression



1970’s Boom





1980’s Boom




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