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Home Improvements That Pay Off

One of the smartest things you can do with your home's equity is to put it right back into your home. It's a clear win-win: You enjoy the benefit of an improved living environment and tangibly enhance your home's value at the same time.

But not every project will increase the resale value of your home. It's best to stick with the ones that will give you the biggest return.

Here's how Remodeling Magazine rates top jobs in terms of one-year return on investment (ROI):

Project  ROI  Average Price Tag
Minor Kitchen Remodel  88%  $8,655
Second-story Addition  83%  $73,553
Bathroom Remodel  81%  $9,135
Bathroom Addition  81%  $13,918
Major Kitchen Remodel  71%  $31,090
Deck  55%  $8,022

Improvement Tips:

Don't over improve. It's difficult to recover the investment in a home that is already more valuable than most others in the neighborhood.

Keep whimsy in check. Eclectic tastes likely won't appeal to mainstream homebuyers.

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