The Yahoo! article linked below is a good piece. For the most part, it is accurate and relevant. I was pleased that the estimated cost ranges for various projects were in-line and realistic. All too-often, people can be misled by the cost “estimates” in magazine and Internet articles.
A few items to clarify for regional purposes:
1) You might notice homes that sit on the market longer than average in communities like Cleveland Heights and Shaker Heights (older housing stock, traditional styling), with no major flaws, are typically those that are vinyl sided. Despite the economic upsides mentioned in this article, the downside can be steep when it comes time to sell your home. Did the siding job strip much of the unique and interesting styling and detail that is so appealing in neighboring homes? Is there a major problem (rot, termite damage) hidden by the siding? Is it poorly hung and offering a “smile” curve to welcome you? Think carefully before making a vinyl siding decision.
2) Finishing a basement in a home built in the 20’s or 30’s can be risky. It is best to start by waterproofing your foundation from the exterior. Drywall or panelling can trap moisture against the inside of your foundation; promoting mold, rot and insects. Is the basement remodel worth the expense if it will need torn out in five years? Begin with the end in mind.