So HGTV has poisoned the old well.

The real estate shows on TV crack me up.  So much drama and so much un-reality, or un-realty. Pun intended.  We know they didn't really remodel that kitchen in an hour, but they didn't do in 2 weeks either.   There is no doubt that improving your home, provided it's done professionally, will improve the value and if you are planning to sell, the marketability.  The questions come to me often, which things should be done to help and do they make cents.  Sorry, I couldn't help myself.


First of all, if you are planning on owning your home for at least three years why not consider doing those upgrades today and enjoying them for yourself.  I see it repeated frequently where folks fix up their home in just in time to sell.  The old standards for improvements were mainly finishes like paint, carpet, vinyl flooring and the like.  That old well has been capped.  The new wells owned by Lowes, Home Depot, and the like, have opened up the possibilities like nothing before.  Take cabinet hardware.  The choices are mind boggling and combine the hundreds of other design choices for a single room and you can easily become dazed.  Americans spend $400 billion annually on home remodeling.  Many folks find the idea of remodeling overwhelming.  About a third of home owners would rather move than remodel.  But if you are in the over 50% that would remodel then having some knowledge of what that means in cost and value to your home can be important.  When remodeling is completed it also increases the desire and enjoyment to be in your home.


If you are planning on staying in your home then your budget is probably based on preference and affordability.  If you plan to sell in the next three years, understanding and  balancing your preferences with the cost of the project is important.  The National Association of Realtors has released their 2019 Remodeling Impact Report and here are some of the take-away's that you should find helpful.  If you would like a copy of the full list, approximate costs and descriptions feel free to email at and I send you a copy of the report.   Here's the top five interior and exterior remodeling projects based on the return of your investment:


Interior:  1.) New wood flooring 106%, 2.) refinishing wood floors 100%, 3.) new HVAC (heating & AC) 85%, 4.) upgrade insulation 84% and 5.) finish basement for living 64%.


Exterior:  1.) New roof 107%, 2.) new garage door 95%, 3.) fiber-cement siding 75%, 4.) new front door 75% and 5.) new vinyl windows 71%.


There is something special about an upgrade to rooms or components, and the market feels it.  With so many choices of design features you can really make a personal statement about your home.  But, again if you plan to sell in the near future the market may not make the same statement.  If you would like to know more about what makes sense in your remodel project I would be happy to share my thoughts and experience.  Just call or email me.



P.S.  Watch for my next blog on the current trends for design and color in real estate.