(WXYZ) - Home improvement projects used to be more of a sure thing- redo your kitchen, bath, or deck and add thousands of dollars to your home's value.
But in these days of stagnant home prices, it's no longer so easy.
New kitchen? 5 years ago, spending $25,000 usually meant you could get another $25,000 at selling time.
But not anymore.
Bloomberg News says many projects now return only half of what you put into them, unlike the pre-recession days.
Among the best projects right now:
A kitchen redo: $24,000 on average, Bloomberg says, and you'll recoup 66 percent of the cost at resale
A full bathroom remodel: $10,000 on average, with a 62 percent return at resale.
Adding a deck remains a good investment: $8,000 and it returns 70 percent of what you paid.
But on the flip side, some projects that don't return much on investment.
Bloomberg says a home office costs $4,000 but you'll get back just 40 percent at resale.
Sunrooms and garage additions also don't bring the big dollars at selling time.
Of course if you're planning to stay in your home for a while, there's nothing wrong with a project that adds value or enjoyment to your life.
Another upside of remodeling, it gives local contractors work and helps rebuild the economy.