Home remodeling can add function, beauty and value if it’s done the right way. Here are some tips on how to avoid making the wrong choices and spending too much money.
Many people have heard horror stories of home owners sinking hundreds of thousands of dollars into a home remodeling project, only to end up eating the cost in the resale of the home. Avoid the most common remodeling mistakes by making smart, informed choices, such as the ones listed here.
Breaking the Bank
A remodel doesn’t have to cost the world to be a positive change in the home. More expensive does not necessarily mean better when it comes to appliances, flooring, cabinets and counter-tops. Set a spending limit for each item on the list. Do the research to compare products with at least three other choices and buy smart, not expensive. If a contractor or designer insists on the purchase of certain brands or products, find someone else to do the job.
Just because the stove is where it is before the remodel doesn’t mean it has to stay in the same place if it’s not efficient design. For instance, is the fridge too far from the working counter space? If so, carefully draft a plan to move it to be more functional.
Be realistic when it comes to the style and the function of the space. Bright orange counter-tops and blue cabinets may seem “fun” right now, but if the house is ever on the market for resale, buyers probably won’t have the same opinion. Also, designing features especially for children does not make long-term sense, because they will grow up and move on. It makes better sense to think about ergonomic features, such as wider hallways, raised cabinets and appliances or handicapped accessible showers for future use.
Being Unrealistic About Function
A home owner who doesn’t cook should not invest in professional grade appliances on the premise that the next person who owns the home will be a professional chef. A $250 microwave works just as well as a $7,000 professional range to heat up frozen lasagna or fish sticks, and will be much cheaper to repair if one of the kids accidentally melts a plastic toy in it.
Spending Too Much Money
A home owner will never recover the cost of a $90,000 remodeling job in a $250,000 home. It’s just not realistic. On the other hand, a $25,000 remodel is right in line with what experts suggest, which is about a 10-15% investment relative to the current resale value of the home.
Creating an Architectural Anomaly
A sleek, modern looking space inside of a traditional decorated four-square colonial will look like a purple cow. Remodeling should result in an improved version of what already exists, not a futuristic parody. Consider the spaces that aren’t being remodeled as much as the space that is being remodeled to create consistency and avoid changing the architectural integrity of the home too much.
Good planning and realistic goals can help a homeowner avoid many of these renovation pitfalls for a successful, and ultimately lucrative, home remodeling.
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