This year's NFL playoffs has already seen several intriguing match-ups. The proud cities of these NFL teams have unique home improvement demands and relative values, so we thought we'd thought we'd match some of the more popular projects with this year's NFL playoff cities. Here's what we came up withı.
* Home improvement demand statistics provided by ServiceMagic, online resource matching homeowners and home improvement contractors.
** Home improvement resale values provided by Remodeling Magazine.
1. Kitchen Remodel in New York/Newark: The favorite to win the Super Bowl heading into the playoffs, kitchen remodels have been the flagship of the home improvement industry for years. Seen as having the easiest road to the Super Bowl, the Giants are in the driver's seat for this year's postseason. Better yet, for homeowners, January and February are the two prime home remodeling months. The Giants are hoping they have similar momentum.
2. Deck Building in Charlotte: Playing in a small market, the Carolina Panthers undeniably have one of the top teams this year. For years, deck building has been one of the top home improvements, a cheap alternative to building a home addition. One of the top cities for deck building projects per 100,000 people*, Charlotte also boasts an average cost vs. value return of 84 percent on the price of a new deck**.
3. Blown-in Insulation in Minnesota: With a great run defense and unreliable quarterback, putting a wide energy-efficient net around the home isn't a bad idea. Home improvement isn't always about focused remodeling. Smothering insulating values make paying utility bills a lot easier, which helps explain why blown-in insulation was the 7th most popular project in Minneapolis.
4. Roof Repair in Phoenix: Not many people immediately think of roof repair as a huge issue in Phoenix, just as many people see the Cardinals as nothing more than a mediocre team that won the worst division in football. That said, the thermal expansion from quick temperature changes can wreak havoc on roofs. Roof repair was the #1 project in Phoenix this season.
5. Handymen in Atlanta: The Falcons had no shortage of problems over the offseason. With a handyman-like overhaul, the team created an amazing turnaround. In home repair situations, these pros can feel like miracle-workers, like the job Matt Ryan did this year, earning Rookie of the Year honors. Handymen have been keeping Atlanta homes in playoff condition; Atlanta is in the top 5 cities for handyman requests per 100,000 people.
6. Siding Installation in Philadelphia: Compared to a new kitchen remodel, new siding may not be the sexiest home improvement, but it does have one of the best values. In fact, siding installation is the only project in Philadelphia currently returning more than 80 percent of its cost in added value. Likewise, the road Philadelphia to make this year's playoffs wasn't especially pretty, but it got the job done.
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1. Bathroom Remodel in Nashville: The Titans used a staunch defense and consistent play on their way to an NFL-best 13-3 record and the top seed out of the AFC. Always one of the top home improvements, bathroom remodels are a great fit for Nashville. For resale value, bathroom remodels in the state of Tennessee perform about 10 percent better than the national average.
2. Fireplaces and Wood Stoves in Pittsburgh: Steelers football is old-school, smash-mouth, gridiron passion. Fittingly, during October of this year, while other cities were still seeing lawn care rank in the top two or three home improvement requests, in Pittsburgh wood stove projects hit #2 and chimney cleaning hit #5 on the city's list of home improvements. Whether it's football or home improvement the hearth is the heart of Pittsburgh.
3. Solar Panels in Miami: Besides winning a conference that's been dominated by the Patriots for the last decade, one of the big stories this year in the NFL has been the turnaround from a 1-15 record last year to 11-5 and a #3 seed this year. A similar trend has occurred with solar panels in Miami. During October, there were 40 requests for solar panels, where the same month had seen only 3 in 2007.
4. Carpets and Flooring in San Diego: Carpet cleaning was the second most popular home improvement in San Diego during the season with carpet installation, wood flooring, and ceramic tile all making strong showings. Though not as lofty of some of the other home improvement projects, flooring can have a dramatic effect on the feel of your home. Likewise, the Chargers, needing a dramatic collapse from the Broncos, might just make some noise during the playoffs.
5. Metal Roofing in Indianapolis: The NFL's hottest team mirrors one of the hottest projects in home improvement. Metal roofing has surged 43.9 percent over the last yearınothing to take for granted this playoff season. Indeed, though not nearly as popular asphalt roofing, many roofing contractors will recommend metal as the premiere roofing material. Plus, the Colts boast of playing in Lucas Oil Stadium with a new, state-of-the-art retractable roofing system.
6. Interior Painting and Staining in Baltimore: One of the more overlooked teams in the playoffs, the Ravens are tied with the Titans for the largest point differential this season. So, too, homeowners often overlook the value of hiring home painters for their projects. In Baltimore, interior house painting ranked as the 7th most popular project. Concrete staining is another project that, when ignored, can lead to an Ed Reed financial interception.