Are you getting tired of your old fixtures and appliances and you feel they need an upgrade? Maybe your home needs a major kitchen or bathroom renovation, you need a second unit for your parents or maybe you are eventually selling your home and want to make it look nice and ready for showing to buyers. Where do you start? What upgrades do you make? As you may know, renovations and home improvements may require a sizable budget and some planning. If you do not have a clear idea of your budget in place, suddenly your project may become massively more expensive than you originally thought. One of the most important first steps when it comes to beginning a renovation is determining your budget. At some point you will have to consider whether you have $5,000, $75,000 or $350,000 to spend, but don’t fret! SweetHome Spaces can help you with this step and many more including what to purchase and what renovations to make that fit within your budget. Remember, you want to maintain a good return on your investment (ROI), so plan carefully and seek the help of experts if needed. We at SweetHome Spaces know that some renovations produce a larger bump in the overall final value of your home especially when it comes time to sell. Here are some common upgrades that are completed:
Accessibility Upgrades - 1 to 2% bump
Fresh Coat of Paint - 1 to 2% bump
Energy Efficient Upgrades - 1 to 3% bump
Simple, Rational Upgrades - 3 to 5% bump
Smart Technology Upgrades - 3 to 5% bump
Creating or Remodeling Outdoor Space - 3 to 5% bump
Reasonable Floor Plan and Open Space - 4 to 6% bump
Kitchen Renovation - 3 to 7% bump
Whether you want to stay and improve, or you are interested in selling your home, knowing your primary buyers should factor into the choices you make when it comes to renovations. In SweetHome Spaces experience, if you live in a bustling area where many younger millennials live or desire to live, you may want to cater to their preferences more so than the older generation. On the other hand, if your area contains an older population, you may want to consider renovations that benefit the older generations, particularly baby boomers. Accessibility renovations are the biggest hits among the baby boomers. These renovations include walk-in showers, comfort height toilets, and a master bedroom on the main floor. This creates a safer space for the homeowners as well as increases their independence, mobility, safety, and happiness. SweetHome Spaces can help you define the best approach to your accessible renovation right from the start. A fresh coat of paint breathes new life into any home. When potential buyers go to view a home and notice new paint, it feels clean, fresh, and modern. You can decide to paint the house on your own or expend a couple thousand dollars and hire a professional company. If you choose to paint the house yourself, SweetHome Spaces strongly recommends using high-quality paint which you can pick up for $35 to $55 a gallon. Paint is one of the first things potential buyers will notice, so you should strongly consider getting your house repainted.
Energy efficient upgrades are not the least expensive renovation you can do, but they will certainly benefit you by reducing monthly costs and environmental impact. Two of the top energy efficient upgrades include installing LED lights and high-efficiency windows. LED bulbs can be costly, at around $7 each, but they have a life expectancy of 20 plus years. High-efficiency windows are not the best investment decision to make if you plan on selling right away, as you will not recoup your entire investment. Installing all new windows on a home may cost between $8,000 to $25,000, depending on size and quality selections. If you’re unhappy with your monthly bill and plan on staying in your current home for some time, making these upgrades may be the way to go. Some other great opportunities to explore are the replacement of your furnace, air conditioning or water heater units, upgrading your insulation and air tightening of your home. SweetHome Spaces can help you budget and select the different solutions that provide you with the best results and rate of return. When investing in renovations and upgrades on your home, you want to make sure you are making sensible decisions that will benefit both parties. Many new buyers are concerned with the structural and fundamental aspects of the house, rather than all the bells and whistles. Potential buyers also want to relax in their prospective home, rather than spend time cleaning and making repairs. SweetHome Spaces suggests you avoid stain prone countertops, install durable hardwood floors, and upgrade old systems that need replacing, such as your roof or water heater. The less work the next owner must do, the more your home will sell for. Technology is constantly changing, and many people like to stay as up to date as they can. When renovating your home with new technological features, make sure to take care as to not go overboard. Since technology changes every couple of years, you do not want to spend thousands of dollars on upgrades that will be essentially futile for the next homeowners. The most successful smart technology renovation, you can add (that is fun to have!) is a programmable thermostat such as a Nest. These are relatively inexpensive, at only a few hundred dollars, and can help reduce monthly energy costs. If you have a larger budget, you may consider installing a whole house generator that can protect the home against power outages. An installed unit can start around $7,000, so it is not a small cost, but it definitely gains attention when it comes time to sell the home.
SweetHome Spaces has found that outdoor spaces continue to grow increasingly popular and if you have a backyard, you will definitely want to do something with it. Consider adding a sitting area such as a patio or deck with a BBQ space that can be utilized. If you have a grass lawn, you may want to take a section of the grass out and replace it with native ground cover plants or pea gravel. This will increase visual interest and reduce maintenance costs and time associated with the upkeep. If you have space, adding a firepit in your yard is a great focal point and is a great way for people to sit around and socialize. Everybody loves having more space to entertain, spend time with friends and family, and place their furniture and knick-knacks. A simple way to gain square footage is to finish your unfinished basement. The cost of a full basement renovation is anywhere from $10,000 to $30,000 and dramatically increases the usable space your home has. If you have an attic, you could also renovate that into a usable space, although it tends to cost a fair bit more than a basement renovation. Building a mother in law unit is a great way to increase livable space and it can provide you with supplemental income that can go towards paying your mortgage, loans, cost of renovation, and more! If you have family over often, having a mother in law unit can be a great way to increase privacy and still have them close by.
While having more space is great, the floor plan is just as important when it comes to home renovations. Open floor plans are becoming more and more common, and are highly sought after. Consider knocking down a wall or two to have your living room and kitchen connected. If your master bedroom is upstairs, consider creating an additional one downstairs that eliminates the need to walk upstairs in order to get to the master bedroom. Create a laundry room upstairs that is located near the bedrooms so that the homeowners do not have to bring their basket of laundry up and down stairs when it is time to do it. These renovations are unique and will make your home stand out on the market. The kitchen is the king of the house. It will yield the greatest return on investment and it is what most potential buyers are drawn to. Many people love to cook, entertain guests, and have parties and get-togethers where they spend time in the kitchen. Stainless steel appliances are the most common appliances purchased and installed due to the modern, sleek finish on them that make them highly desirable. Quartz countertops are also common due to the low maintenance and high durability they provide. Consider adding an island to your kitchen that provides more storage space and seating to the area. Working with a designer may be best when it comes to kitchen renovations. Now that you know what can yield the highest return on investment, what project do you think you want to be done first? Is your kitchen needing a refresh? Is the backyard getting unmanageable? Every step of the way, we will be here to help you with designing your dream home, to installing your new appliances.