Bay Area residents know that living in such a beautiful region of the country comes with a cost. Housing is more pricey in the Bay Area than almost anywhere else in the United States. Remodeling costs are no different. It would hardly be an exaggeration to say they’re through the roof.
The numbers tell the story. Remodeling Magazine recently released its annual Cost vs Value Report for the country’s leading metropolitan areas. Is it any wonder that, from kitchen remodels to bathroom additions to roof replacements, Bay Area costs rank near the top? The sticker shock is considerably less startling if you’ve spent any time following the local real estate market.
Seekers of silver linings can start by looking at return on investment rates. According to the same Cost vs. Value Report, home remodelers don’t simply get their money back when they sell their homes, they typically get more than what they put into them.
How much exactly are they putting into them? The team at House Manager did some research into two of the largest Bay Area markets to provide you with ballpark ranges to expect should you choose to embark on a home remodel of your own.
Kitchen Remodels: What’s Cooking and What Will it Cost?
Let’s start with kitchens—those high-traffic, social hubs of our domestic lives. In addition to being one of the most popular spaces to remodel, they’re also one of the most expensive. This isn’t a conspiracy; it’s basic math. A fully functional kitchen involves electrical, plumbing, appliances, and cabinetry. If you’re going to invest in a remodel, you’re going to encounter issues with one or more of these areas. The costs can quickly add up.
Let’s talk cost: according to the 2019 Cost vs. Value Report, the average price tag for a midrange major kitchen remodel in San Francisco is $83,300. This compares with the national average of $66,196. The resale value is $72,287, which represents roughly 88% of the cost. Further down the peninsula in San Jose, the average price for the same midrange major kitchen remodel is $79,623 and the resale value is $58,481, which represents roughly 73% of the cost. What exactly do we mean by a “midrange major remodel”? Remodeling Magazine defines it as a 200-square-foot kitchen updated with semi-custom cabinets, laminate countertops, new appliances, new flooring, and new paint and trim. An “upscale” remodel might involve updates like stone countertops, ceramic backsplash, high-end appliances, and custom cabinetry. Many kitchen remodels involve a mix of mid- and high-range features.
Feeling Flush? Let’s Talk Bathrooms.
There are many factors to consider when investing in a bathroom addition: tub, shower, tile, flooring, and fixtures. Like the kitchen, every detail matters and the charges can quickly mount. According to Remodeling Magazine’s trusty Cost vs. Value report, the average price tag for a midrange bathroom addition in San Francisco is $65,360. In comparison, the national average is $47,427. The resale value is $52,619, which represents roughly 80% of the price.
In San Jose, the average charge for the same midrange bathroom addition is $63,474. The resale value is $41,905, which translates to roughly 66% of the cost.
For those of you keeping score, “midrange” is defined as a 5-foot by 7-foot space. It stands to reason that the price of a typical bathroom remodel really depends on the size of the space and the materials being selected.
Pro tip: Pro Tip: The costs we’ve listed here are what you can expect to pay for a quality bathroom remodel managed by a competent general contractor. The experts at the Spruce have a few ideas on how to go about choosing the right contractor for your project.
Gimme Shelter! New Roof Costs Are on the Rise.
Cracked shingles, unsightly bald spots... roofs can take a beating and invariably need to be replaced. According to you know who, the average cost for a roof replacement in San Francisco is $29,768, compared to the national average of $22,636. The resale value is $23,932, which represents 80.4% of the price. In San Jose, the average cost for the same job is $28,645. The resale value is $21,850, which represents 76.3% of the upfront amount.
Pro tip: Pro tip: Roof replacement work falls under two distinct categories, asphalt shingles (see above) and metal work. In both San Francisco and San Jose, metal roofs are roughly 40% more expensive to replace, which has a negative impact on the cost recouped.
Trendspotters will point out that none of the three projects cited above recouped their costs entirely. We focused on three of the most popular home renovation projects. Other projects such as manufactured stone veneer, garage door replacements, or even minor mid-range kitchen remodels, more than covered their upfront costs. Return rates will vary from project to project, but few would argue the value of knowing what you’re getting into before you start. A remodel can inject fresh life into your home and increase its resale value, but it shouldn’t come at the expense of breaking the bank.