10 most valuable home improvements

Minor kitchen remodeling

A minor kitchen remodel typically includes new cabinet faces and hardware, as well as new counter tops, flooring and appliances. According to the Cost vs. Value home improvement survey, it costs $18,856 and adds $15,585 in value, 82.7% of the cost.

Such a minimal approach only works when a kitchen is configured well but is out of date, says Don Van Cura Sr., owner and president of Don Van Cura Construction in Chicago. In such a case, updates like stainless-steel appliances, fresh paint and modern surface light fixtures "will change the character of the room."

There’s a fine line between a minor and major kitchen remodel, Van Cura points out. "Changing the cabinetry is the tipping point."

A major remodeling project can really hit your wallet. The average price is $54,909, according to Remodeling Magazine, and you'll recoup just 74.2% of the cost.

Source: Remodeling 2014 Cost vs. Value Report (www.costvalue.com).