10 most valuable home improvements

Wooden deck addition

A wooden deck costs $9,539 and adds $8,334 in value, 87.4% of the cost, according to the Remodeling Magazine survey.

This project assumes a 16- by 20-foot addition.

Noteworthy here is that the projected percentage of the cost you'll recoup is better — and the renovation cheaper — than if you built a similar deck using composite materials.

Choose wood over composite, and you're picking value today over long-term upkeep because most decks constructed with recycled plastic and wood fibers are maintenance-free. Wood decks are not.

More than 80% of decks are built with pressure-treated wood, which should be retreated with water repellant annually, according to the North American Deck and Railing Association.

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

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