These Home Improvements Will Offer the Best Return for Utah Homeowners in 2019

Exterior renovations and kitchen remodels top Remodeling’s annual Cost vs. Value Report.

Ali Hardy Mar 27, 2019

With home values steadily increasing, you might be considering tapping the equity in your house to fund a renovation this year. But before you call in the Property Brothers to install sliding barn doors, it pays to figure out which projects offer the highest return on investment.

The Remodeling 2019 Cost vs. Value Report compares average costs for remodeling projects with the value those projects retain at resale in more than 100 U.S. markets, including Salt Lake City, Utah. The following 10 projects offer the best ROI, based on data from the Beehive State.

Utah Home Improvement #1: Stone veneer

Veneer is the top-ranked renovation in Utah this year. The cost is $8,448 with a resale value of $10,980 — an impressive 130 percent return. This project consists of removing 300-square-feet of existing vinyl siding from the bottom third of your home’s street-facing façade and replacing it with manufactured stone veneer.

Utah Home Improvement #2: Minor kitchen remodel

A minor kitchen remodel totals $21,442, with a cost recovery of 97.6 percent. This project assumes you have a functional but dated 200-square-foot kitchen. Some improvements include replacing cabinet and drawer fronts, cooktop/oven range, refrigerator, laminate countertops and flooring.

Utah Home Improvement #3: New garage door

In Utah, a garage door replacement is a great value. The most inexpensive improvement on the list, it costs just $3,513 and comes with a 92.5 percent cost return.

If you’re considering this project, plan to install a new garage door on new steel tracks, but reuse the existing motorized opener. 

garage door white

Utah Home Improvement #4: New siding

Siding replacement will cost $14,831 with an 85 percent return. The project consists of 1,250 square feet of new siding.

Utah Home Improvement #5: Wood deck

Data suggest a new wooden deck is a better value than composite. The project cost, $13,612, accounts for the addition of a 16x20-foot deck, including stairs, railing and a built-in bench and planter.

Utah Home Improvement #6: New windows

New vinyl windows beat wood in resale value, costing you $16,132 with a return of 79.7 percent. This project assumes the replacement of 10 existing 3x5-foot double-hung windows.

Utah Home Improvement #7: Major kitchen remodel

This type of remodel is classified as midrange and has a price tag of $63,231, with a resale recoup of 78.4 percent. A project like this would include upgrading a 200-square-foot kitchen with elements like semi-custom wood cabinets, a 3x5-foot island, laminate countertops, a double-tub stainless-steel sink, custom lighting, and new flooring, to name a few items.

Utah Home Improvement #8: Composite deck

According to the Cost vs. Value Report, Utahns appreciate an upgraded deck. The project cost, $18,184, accounts for the addition of a 16x20-foot deck in composite deck material, including stairs, railing and a built-in bench and planter.

Utah Home Improvement #9: Grand entrance

A grand entrance refers to removing your existing entry door and reframing a larger opening for a new entry door with dual sidelights that provide an upscale appearance. The cost, $8,689, comes with a 74.8 percent resale return.

Utah Home Improvement #10: New roof

This project is for asphalt shingles, which have a higher resale return than their metal counterpart at 69.9 percent. The cost of $21,453 assumes the removal and disposal of existing roofing and installation of fiberglass asphalt shingles.

Complete data from the Remodeling 2019 Cost vs. Value Report can be downloaded free at

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