Remodel and watch your “investment” plunge in value: 2011-2012 data is worst in 9 years

home sweet money pitHow much money will you make on that lovely new kitchen or bathroom when you go to sell your house? Oopsy — likely not one penny. In fact, according to the 2011–12 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report (, released last week, you will lose 30-35% — or more — on most home remodeling projects, even “mid-range” ones. This gap is the worst in nine years, since the survey began in 2003. For example, a “minor” $19,588 kitchen remodel? Expect not to recoup — that is, expect to lose — more than $5,000 on that “investment” when you go to re-sell. Debbie Downer reports…

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Real porcelain enamel coating to restore your drainboard sink, tub or stove

reporcelain for a sink After Joe was unsuccessful in his attempt to epoxy-coat his vintage porcelain drainboard sink, he replaced it with a new Elkay Lustertone stainless steel drainboard sink. Even though the metal drainboard sink looks great, Joe says he would have preferred to keep his old porcelain sink top and have had the original enamel restored, refinished or replaced. But he didn’t know of a source — and neither did I. Until now.

Thanks to reader TappanTrailerTami, who let us know:Heck yeah there is more →

Parts, service and advice to fix old stoves and other vintage appliances – 9 online resources

parts and service for vintage stoves and appliances

Earlier this year I wrote a story with ideas about where to get your vintage appliances, including stoves, repaired. My focus was on helping you find local suppliers — old time repair shops — that could help you out. But, readers also chimed in with some great comments. I strongly encourage you to read that original post, along with all the Comments. In particular, though, I wanted to call out the online resources suggested by reader Patrick Coffey. He seems to have pulled together a great list of both companies and community forums that can help you connect with parts, service and instructions to help get your vintage appliances and stoves back in tip-top shape if you are unable to find local repair shops that can do the work for you. Patrick writes:Heck yeah there is more →

Where to find bathroom replacement tile for a vintage bathroom

replacement tile for a 1950s 1960s or 1970s bathroomUpdate: World of Tile has now closed. See our story on the liquidation sale going on through about Nov. 15 here.

One of the biggest “needs” of owners of mid century homes is: Replacement tile for cracked or broken original tiles in otherwise perfectly beautiful and functional mid century bathrooms. Now that we have discovered World of Tile we have probably the single best place in the nation (so far) where we have a chance to find an authentic vintage match for our 1950s, 1960s, 1970s and even 1980s bathrooms. Heck yeah there is more →

The average price of premium vintage steel kitchen cabinets in 2010: $39 per cabinet, according to 52PostnBeam analysis

how much is a set of vintage st charles metal kitchen cabinets worth

What was the average price of a premium vintage steel kitchen cabinet purchased via craigslist in 2010? According to analysis by reader-expert 52PostnBeam aka Helen: $39. As regular readers of our Steel Cabinet Forum  know well, Helen has been fiercely pursuing vintage metal cabinets for her own kitchen for the past year. Moveover, in her quest, she has posted hundreds of craigslist ads for all varieties of metal kitchen cabinets onto the Forum. 52PBnJ (as I like to call her) is one tenacious researcher.  By this point, she can name virtually any cabinet by sight, and discuss the differences within brands over the years. It is very impressive! Now, Helen has taken it up another notch by cataloguing and analyzing the final listed sales prices of major cabinet sets for the past year. How much should you charge for your vintage steel kitchen cabinets? How much should you pay? The final decision will always be personal. But, read on for 52PnB’s analysis of 29 final sales of “premium” sets last year. –>Heck yeah there is more →