What to Remodel First: The Biggest Bang for Your Buck

What to Remodel First: The Biggest Bang for Your Buck

March 14th, 2023

You’ve been thinking about remodeling your home but can’t decide what improvements will give you the biggest bang for your buck. If you’re not sure which space to start with, it’s okay! We will explore how you can transform your home through renovation and determine which area is best suited for a remodel.


If you’re concentrating on resale value, remodeling your kitchen will give you the most significant overall increase. The kitchen is often considered the heart of the home, so it's no surprise that this is one of the most popular places to renovate. A major remodel can come with a hefty price tag, but it can be an excellent investment. According to Ramsey Solutions, the national average return on investment (ROI) of a major kitchen remodel is 54%. But even slight alterations can make a big impact. If you're not ready to tackle a full-scale kitchen renovation, consider these minor changes:

  • Updating Your Cabinets with Paint or New Hardware: Painting your cabinets gives them new life while customizing the color to fit your palette. Additionally, you can pick high-end hardware to give your cabinetry an instant facelift.
  • A Fresh Coat of Paint on the Walls: Changing the paint in your kitchen will instantly transform the ambiance. You could choose a neutral palette if you’re looking for a calm, inviting atmosphere. If you want a bolder look, you can opt for jewel-toned paint.
  • Installing New Appliances: The right appliances in your kitchen can make all the difference. Upgrading to newer, more advanced models is an easy change that will allow you to customize your kitchen. Newer models can also be more efficient, helping save on energy bills while providing better performance than old ones.
  • Flooring: Consider all your flooring options by looking at every material available. Hardwood isn’t the only option that evokes luxury. Vinyl flooring can often mimic the grain of expensive-looking wood for an affordable price.

These small changes can go a long way in terms of both function and aesthetics and can be completed at lower costs.


The bathroom is another popular spot for home renovations. If you want your home to feel luxurious without breaking the bank—consider revamping your bathrooms. You can spruce up your space with minor adjustments. Consider adding a double vanity or installing heated floors if your budget allows. These upgrades will make you feel like you’ve been transported to a spa and greatly impact the feel of your home. If you’re looking to start with subtle enhancements, begin with:

  • Outdated Fixtures: Changing the lighting in your bathroom gives the atmosphere an instant refresh. Swap out your outdated light fixtures with something more elevated. Additionally, replacing tired old fixtures like faucets and towel racks give your bathroom a whole new look with minimal cost or effort.
  • New Tiling: New tile on the floor or in your shower changes the mood of your bathroom. You can play with different color combinations and customize the shape of your tile to conform to your vision. Upgraded tiling enhances the feel of your space.
  • Vanity: You can upgrade your current vanity with fresh paint or a new countertop—or install a new vanity altogether.

Whether you’re looking for resale value or just to bring a bit of luxury into your home, a bathroom renovation can easily fit into a pre-fixed budget.

Living Room

Updating your living room can alter the entire feel of your home without a huge price tag. The living room is typically one of the first places people see when they enter your home, so it's important to make a good impression. If your living room could use an update, start by decluttering and rearranging the furniture to create a more welcoming area. You can add small personal touches to your space with little money. Try these minor updates:

  • Paint: Refresh the room with a different paint color. Your living room will set the mood for the interior of your home. Choosing a paint color that is light and bright gives your home a clean, inviting feel. Alternatively, a darker paint color can make the room more cozy and intimate.
  • Light Fixtures: Changing out old light fixtures can give your living room a dramatic new look. Or, you can choose to utilize secondary lighting to highlight shelving, pictures, or even your TV. Adding sconces is a great way to add style and elegance without the harsh overhead lighting.
  • Crown Molding: Adding simple crown molding to your living room enhances the room's personality without being overtly obvious. This subtle detail makes your space stand out with sophistication.

Simple changes in your living room set the stage for the rest of your home. Without spending too much, you can boost the ambiance of your area.


Exterior work tends to be pricier than a room remodel, but you can look forward to an excellent ROI and beautiful curb appeal. According to Remodel’s 2022 Cost vs. Value Report, simply adding manufactured stone veneer to the exterior of your home can yield a 92% ROI. You can, of course, simply upgrade your vinyl or even opt for a power wash for the outside of your home. If you’re not seeking to transform your home with veneer or siding, you could try these simple upgrades:

  • Front Door: Painting your front door drastically changes the feel and attitude of your home. This is something straightforward and cost-effective that makes a huge impact. Additionally, you can replace your front door and select one with windows or elevated hardware.
  • Mailbox: Selecting a custom mailbox can truly change your home's curb appeal. You can choose from a slew of styles to find one that suits your house.

There are many factors to consider when deciding which home remodeling projects to tackle first. But if you're strategic about where you spend your money, you can get a lot of bang for your buck. So whether you're looking to update your kitchen or just add some personal touches to your living room, we hope this guide has been helpful! Download the Top Remodeling Trends in 2023 Guidebook to give yourself the most up-to-date ideas for bringing beauty, luxury, and new life to your home.

Key Takeaways:

  • A major or minor remodel can add value to your home
  • You don’t have to spend a lot of money to elevate your spaces
  • For the most significant impact, update your kitchen first