Perhaps you're considering repainting the house, changing the wallpaper, upgrading your floors or investing in carpets. Maybe your kids are begging you to build them a playroom or a multi-media center. Your spouse may want a modern kitchen with high-end amenities such as a skylight, sub-zero refrigerator and eight-burner stove, while you may be more concerned about redoing the roof, upgrading the bathroom or sprucing up your home exterior.
How do you prioritize your investments and decide which home improvements pay off? One rule of thumb is to consider how the project will affect the value of your home in the future, as not all home improvements have the same resale value.

Kitchen and bathroom updates can be costly, but the return on your investment ranges between 75 to 100 percent. A high-end siding replacement is another lucrative, yet inexpensive, means of raising your home's purchase price. On the other hand, the addition of a sunroom has poor long-term payoffs, and if your home renovation is too extravagant so that it pushes your home's market value above the value of your neighborhood, you may not get your money back.

Today's top 10 home improvements
Here are today's top 10 home improvement areas you can depend upon for a good return on your investment:
  • Kitchen
  • Bathroom
  • Home exterior ("curb appeal")
  • Home siding
  • Roofs
  • Decks
  • Flooring (especially hardwood floors)
  • Room addition
  • Window replacements
  • Master bedroom