Latest Discussions : Buying & Selling Homes


06:40AM | 05/26/04
Member Since: 05/25/04
2 lifetime posts
We can't afford to make all of these improvements, so which of these would raise the value of our home the most?

1. New HVAC (current unit over 30 years old)

2. New roof (current roof over 20 years old)

3. New windows (currently old single pane)

4. New carport (no covered parking now)

Everything works fine, but it's all pretty old. We have a double drive way, but no garage or carport, although there is plenty of room for one. The roof has no leaks, but it is showing wear. The heating/AC works fine, but it is a big, loud, beast. Windows are also fine, but not very efficient.


07:09AM | 05/26/04
Member Since: 07/01/03
549 lifetime posts
Tough question. You offer 3 maintenance items and one addition as possible value builders for your home. The addition of a garage is the only item here that would add value to the home. Every structure is expected to have functional heating, roofing and windows. Keeping those items in good condition pays you back through lower utility bills and protecting the structure. I think it is like the comparison between needs and wants. You need a good HVAC, roof and windows; you want enclosed parking.

From a straight appraisal point of view, the enclosed parking adds a feature. Everything else, just has to be there and increases value only to the baseline of well maintained homes of the same size and location. In resale, you will not get significantly more money for upgraded or newer windows, roof or HVAC; but they need to be there and in good condition or its a deduct. For return value, focus on what you see and touch. Paint, finishes and additions first, roof second, windows and HVAC as needed to maintain function.


07:50AM | 05/26/04
Member Since: 05/25/04
2 lifetime posts
Thanks for the reply. Here's another question... Do you think I would get a decent return on the addition of covered parking? (garage would be best, but carports are very common in my area as well)

I mean, would the value of my home go up enough to justify the cost of the addition?

We're not going anywhere soon, so a garage/carport would be nice to have regardless of the added value, but I'm still curious about how much of that money I would 'get back' when we do eventaully sell.

Make sense?


10:11AM | 05/26/04
Member Since: 07/01/03
549 lifetime posts
There are too many variables here that are specific to your local market to predict the value added for a carport. For maximum return, be sure to pull all legal building permits and build to professional looking standards consistent with comparable properties in your neighborhood at the minimum cost.

If you have any realtor friends in your area, you should ask their opinion. From our internet perspective, we can only address generalities that appear true for the market as a whole. The highest ROI for improvements generally come from kitchen and bath remodels or additions. If you are in a market of rapidly increasing values you can't lose. If home prices are stable or declining the risk is greater.

I think the value and utility a carport returns to you while you live there is a more important concern unless you are actually concerned about losing money on your investment. It may help to think of the investment in terms of a percentage of you home value. i.e. home value $100,000 and carport $6000 = 6% of value. If your market is rising at 10% per year, inflation alone cover that amount in the first year.


03:24AM | 06/20/04
Member Since: 09/16/02
250 lifetime posts
I'm not a realator or anything like that, but,

I can agree with tomh that the carport is the only thing that might actually ADD value to your home, BUT is it something you really want? There are stats out there that show if you add a finished basement you get a percentage back when you sell your house. It was never over 80% return as I recall.

The three things you say you might do. Imagine if you do the A/C and then tomorrow one of the other two go. Are you going to have the money to fix those?

You say all three work OK. What if you do decide to sell and the person comes in with no inspector and buys as is. Then you just wasted your money. If you wait and the inspector determines the roof is old and needs to be replaced you can ask if they would take half towards the installation. This way they get to have the quality and options they want instead of what you pick out.

If you're low on money I would hang tight and wait for something to go out. If you've been without a carport this long I would wait a little longer.

Good luck,


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