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Home renovations are exciting and fun—at least on paper or on Pinterest. In reality, house updates can be long and costly projects. Whether you are updating your house for yourself or planning to sell the family homestead, figuring out what projects to prioritize to get the most bang for your buck can be a challenge. After all, how are you supposed to know if painting the bathroom, putting in a tile backsplash, faux marbling your counters, or adding a backyard pergola is the best investment? Luckily, there is one project that can be done in a weekend, possibly handled without a contractor, and has a huge return on investment.

Blue Front Door with Matching Containers with Hydrangeas
Credit: Hector Manuel Sanchez; Styling: Barbara Schmidt

Turns out that replacing your front door has an extremely impressive ROI, which Forbes defines as comparing "how much you paid for an investment to how much you earned" from the investment. Basically, how much you put in versus how much you get out of it. A higher ROI, the more bang for your buck. According to Realm, a data clearinghouse for homeowners, a simple front door refresh has an ROI of 484.55 percent. That is a massive return for not all that much work. So, if you've been waiting to swap in classic French doors for a New Orleans-style version complete with brass lanterns and fleur de lis door knockers, don't wait. Even smaller front door refreshes like swapping in new fixtures or painting your door a fun new color, like sky blue or all-American red, can have a similar ROI. The thought is that a front door refresh enhances your home's all-important curb appeal, which adds real value to your property.

If you're looking for other home improvement projects to help you maximize your time, effort, and money, Realm has a few other ideas for projects that have surprisingly high ROI. Those include adding outdoor living space like a firepit, pergola (127% ROI), or a patio (147% ROI). Inside, replacing your kitchen cabinets has a 208% ROI while adding luxury perks like a steam shower (168% ROI) can also entice buyers and raise property values all while letting you relax in a steam shower.