Remodeling design and materials change regularly. Sometimes yesterday’s hot trend will be tomorrow’s atrocity. While remodeling is most often done to enhance a family’s lifestyle, there is a large element of personal preference in the design of the room, the style, the décor and the choice of materials. But all changes to a home affect the home’s value in the market. And, like it or not, most homeowners don’t want to invest in home improvements or remodeling projects that will decrease the value of their home.
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To help you avoid some costly mistakes, here are some of the top things to do, or not to do, when you remodel your home, especially if you are remodeling because you plan to put your home on the market soon.
Things to do:
  1. Sunrooms are a cost-efficient home addition.
  2. Outdoor kitchens are a good investment, increasing your home’s value by 130% of the cost of the kitchen, and sometimes as much as 200% of your investment.
  3. Choose only energy-efficient appliances.
  4. Install energy-efficient lighting fixtures.
  5. Upgrade to high-efficiency windows.
  6. Use environmentally-friendly materials whenever possible.
  7. Replace any lead pipes that might still be in your home.
  8. Create open spaces rather than lots of closed-off rooms.
  9. Invest in a comfortable master suite.
  10. Put a family room on the main floor of the home.
  11. Upgrade insulation
  12. Use engineered lumber to span longer areas without the support of posts when removing load-bearing walls
  13. Look closely at finishing basements and attics before adding rooms.
  14. Choose an insulated metal roof if you need to replace your roof because of durability and energy efficiency
  15. Use natural materials, such as stone, wood, etc. whenever possible
  16. Add finish trim, such as door and window moldings, chair rail, wainscoting and crown molding
  17. Consider the advantages of universal design for door sizes, space in the center of rooms, entry to the home, etc. 101 Ways to Save Money When by by Dan Fritschen
Things not to do:
  1. Don’t choose a bathroom sink that is a bowl sitting on top of a counter. This fad is over and the style is not practical.
  2. Don’t install windows without moldings. This trend is also over, and buyers want the home to look finished.
  3. Never improve a home beyond everything else in the neighborhood.
  4. Don’t raise or lower kitchen counter heights. Stay with standard heights
  5. Stay away from wall colors that are the current trend or dark or extremely bright colors. Different buyers like different things. It is easiest to envision new colors if you are looking at rooms painted in neutral colors.
  6. Don’t use concrete block for exterior walls. This tends to be seen as cheap or shoddy construction. If you have concrete block walls, consider covering them with something more attractive. If you are building an addition, choose different materials.
  7. Don’t settle for basic bathrooms, especially in the master suite. Spa features are the clear trend. In the Master bathroom, at least, you need to include a spa tub or shower and a few other luxury amenities. A spa shower would be a great addition to a second bathroom for other family members and for guests.
  8. If you are adding stairs to a second floor, a finished attic or a basement, take the time and space to build a standard stairway and don’t use a spiral staircase. The statistics for injury on spiral stairways are frightening, especially if you have children, elderly or disabled people in the home.
  9. Don’t remodel a kitchen with the bare minimum. The kitchen is often the heart of family life in the home. It is also a place to entertain guests. Home buyers are looking for high-quality materials, energy-efficient, high-quality appliances, high-end cabinets, and high-end counter top materials.
  10. Don’t choose concrete counter tops. This trend is winding down.
  11. Don’t leave a garage addition or remodel without insulated walls.
  12. Don’t use hardwood laminate or bamboo floor coverings. There are many negative reports about how these materials hold up to wear. Bamboo tends to scratch and warp. Hardwood laminate stains, changes color, and can’t be sanded repeatedly.

These tips on what to do, or not to do should help you keep your remodel on the right track if your intention is to attract potential buyers. 

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Introduction to Contracts
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