Daily Archives: January 3, 2011

Your Garage Door R.O.I.

For most people who remodel their home, return on investment is important.

The reality is that you usually won’t recover the cost of your investment right away; however, there are projects that recoup faster than others and play a strong role in a home’s resale value. Projects that impact curb appeal tend to impact resale value. When a buyer approaches a house, the curb appeal can affect a potential buyer’s first impression and, consequently, a home’s resale value.

Garage door replacement projects ranked high among a return in investment, recouping from 69 percent of the cost on the upscale garage door to 83 percent on the mid-range garage door. This high rate of return is due to the fact that garage door replacements are among the least expensive projects and that they improve curb appeal instantly.

Look at the overall design of your home when considering a garage-door upgrade. Having the garage on the front of the house is not ideal, architecturally speaking, so the object is usually to make the door look as nice as possible without making it the star of the show.

The design focus should be on your front entrance, rather than the garage. But, if you are planning to replace your garage door, manufacturers today give you several options from which to choose.

Garage doors are comprised of two main elements: the sections and the overlay. The sections make up the basic unit of the door. They are the large panels hinged together to create the door.

Overlays are added for decorative effect. This is where the options seem endless. You can find any design you want with an overlay.

The most commonly purchased garage door does not include an overlay.

It is a standard door with steel sections that have a design pressed or embossed into them and the attempt to mimic wood grain is not very convincing. These doors are typically not insulated, so they are most appropriate for detached, non-heated garages. Insulated garage doors make sense if your garage is attached to your home, or if you have a garage/workshop that is heated for your comfort.

Doors with overlays are more expensive, but they give a garage door more style and character. Overlays can be made of several materials. An overlay option is steel. “Boards” are created with an embossed texture and then applied to the base sections to create the carriage-house look.

The most expensive is real wood. You can choose from many types, including cedar, exotic hardwood and salvaged barn wood. Doors finished with a real wood overlay are quite heavy and require commercial grade operators. There is also some maintenance with wood overlays, such as staining, sealing or painting.

Once you decide the look and material of your garage door then you have to determine how you want it to function. Insulation, safety features, windows and the garage door opener are all elements to consider when replacing your garage door.

An updated garage door that not only looks good but functions well and saves energy will leave a great first impression for guests or prospective buyers.

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