If you’ve hung out for me for awhile you know my family lives and breathes home remodeling. Not only do my hubby and I actually OWN a second generation remodeling company (my in-laws started it, so you know what our topic of conversation is over dinner!), but I worked at our company as an interior designer for over a decade! PLUS, we are on our third house that we have remodeled from top to bottom.
So let’s just say I know my way around a construction site. In fact all of these photos are from my own house or from client’s homes that I’ve designed. This is real life baby!
But remodeling can be a bit overwhelming. How much should you spend? What updates will give you the most value? And if you are looking to sell your home, which updates make the most sense?
So if you have set aside a budget for home remodeling and you’re ready to make a change, consider the following home trends of 2017 that will also make sense long term too!
6 Ways to Get the Most Bang For your Buck on Your Remodeling Project!
UPDATE #1: Open Layout Concept
If several areas of your home are walled off and compartmentalized, it can make the house appear small and stuffy. For a clutter-free home that provides easy access to all of the rooms, consider taking out the walls and opting for an Open Floor Plan. (Plus if you have little kids, you WANT to see where they are!) This trend is becoming increasingly popular as each year goes by, and it can be a wise decision if you’re thinking about putting your home on the market anytime soon.
So this is a real life kitchen that I designed. Here was the 1950’s “Before”, not only was it outdated, but completely closed off from the rest of the house. Total party killer, right?
We removed THREE different walls to open up the entire main floor (check out those dropped beam and column!) and it made all of the difference in the world. Their kitchen is not only gorgeous but it makes every room in their house feel 100 times bigger!
I know the term “load bearing wall” might strike fear into you…but it’s not as big of a deal as it sounds. Get a pro out there and he or she can tell you what walls are load bearing. If they are, most of the time you can still remove them! Usually we stick a beam in the ceiling (hidden or dropped) for support, or you could need a column. Opening up your space can make a HUGE difference….it is one of the most common things we do at our remodeling company.
UPDATE #2: Update Kitchen (& Bath) Cabinets
You may have heard that baths and kitchens sell houses. It’s true.
Okay, here is a peek into my house. You know I love you all because I’m showing what was the MOST embarrassing room in my entire house. This is the bathroom we inherited when we bought the house. Not the selling point, let me tell you!
But we FINALLY remodeled it last year! But we didn’t even gut the whole thing. With this room we used Updates #2, #3 and #5!! With some small changes like updating the cabinets (we actually kept the cabinets and painted them) along with a new top and plumbing fixtures, it is like a whole new room. And THIS type of bathroom will help sell a house! Check out the entire transformation HERE and find out all of my budget savvy bath remodeling ideas!
Older homes often have inadequate storage space, leading to increased levels of clutter sitting out on the countertops. If you’re tired of stashing your kitchen cookware or your bathroom toiletries on any open space instead of inside the cabinets, check out a one-stop-shop for your home remodeling project . This home improvement company has everything you need for a complete home remodeling project, including several choices of kitchen cabinets that will mesh perfectly with the theme and style of your home.
If you can’t afford brand new cabinets, then I would suggest three mini updates:
Mini Update #1: Paint your cabinets. That is the #1 (easy) way to update dated cabinets
Mini Update #2: Swap out the cabinet pulls (and don’t forget those hinges as well!)
Mini Update #3 You’ve probably known about the first two. But the third is my favorite: add molding to your existing cabinets. Add crown molding or under cabinet molding, or even corbels (if that fits your style). The material is cheap but it makes your cabinets look a thousand times better. Pinky promise.
UPDATE #3: Update Your Countertops (and try Matte!)
Here’s a bathroom I designed for a client, and we used a matte marble countertop. She had a boring, builder basic bath, but with a few updates we turned it into a gorgeous Farmhouse beauty. Check out the entire makeover HERE
Maybe it’s all of the HGTV shows on right now, but potential home buyers are now expecting granite or quartz counter tops. And you better believe it is a selling point when you have them. (Not selling? Stone tops are durable, heat resistant, scratch resistant and just plain gorgeous. Even if you don’t have new cabinets, new tops will make your kitchen updated in a nano second).
While high-shine countertops and appliances used to be the norm, many homeowners are choosing to opt for muted colors and matte finish. If your home is modern and you tend to shy away from flashy features, consider updating your countertops with granite or marble in a matte finish to give your home a touch of glam. Natural stone countertops look gorgeous in any home, and you’ll love that the matte finish is easier to clean and requires less maintenance than their glossy counterparts.
UPDATE #4: Swap out to Hardwood Floors
This is my Living Room and we chose wide plank, hand-scraped hickory floors the color of dirt. Yup, we have three kids and a dog. Enough said. (Love sneak peeks into other people’s homes? Check out even more right HERE…don’t worry, I love to too!)
Hardwood flooring has been a favorite for decades, and it remains at the top of the list for 2017. If your home has carpet installed, spring is the ideal time of year to purge this old material and replace it with new hardwood flooring. Carpet used to be the go-to option for new homes, as this material was the cheapest option on the market back in the 1990s. If you’re ready for an upgrade that everyone in the home is sure to enjoy, choose to have hardwood flooring installed in high-traffic areas of the home.
And I know what you are thinking…laminate and vinyl and more! I’m a huge fan of those products too, but I’ll tell you…future home buyers DO know the diff these days…and they still love the real deal!
If you are remodeling to sell: hardwoods are still a huge selling feature (Watch House Hunters if you don’t believe me!). If you are looking to stay, hardwoods are loads easier to clean and help with allergies.
UPDATE #5: Update that Bathroom
(And if you can only pick one….make it the Master Bathroom!)
Remember when I told you that kitchens and baths sell a house?
The bathroom is a vital part of the home, and you’ll feel like you went to the spa with features like a glassed-in shower, floor heaters, and extra settings on the showerhead. While these features will no doubt be a joy to use while you’re living in the home, they’re also a great way to attract potential buyers if you’re ready to put your home on the market.
So here is my bathroom from my last home:
In our last bathroom (there she is above!) we gutted it but decided to save money by installing a nice acrylic shower unit (instead of tile). However, we added in two shower heads, shower sprayers, and a rainfall shower head. It was AMAZING, and we still spent waaaay less than doing a custom tile shower with custom glass. All you need is one “wow” feature to get your bathroom noticed.
UPDATE #6: Install a Smart Thermostat
I saved the easiest for last.
If you not only want to save on energy bills (but also get the super cool feature of adjusting it all from your smart phone!), opt for a smart thermostat. There are several options available from home improvement stores, and this handy feature is steadily making its way into more households each year. To save money on utilities and reduce your impact on the environment, invest in this technology to learn more about your energy usage habits.
(P.S. This super cool room I designed above uses this technology, it’s just not in the photo!)
When we left on vacation last week, we cranked down our thermostat and easily popped it back up to ideal temp from our car when we were still a state away, so it was plenty toasty when we got home. Gotta love technology.
So there you go, these 6 ways are no-brainers when you are updating your home!
UPDATE #7: Paint, Paint, Paint
It is ALWAYS going to be the go-to. It is pretty darn easy and inexpensive. And there is NOTHING that turns off a buyer more than obnoxious paint colors. (It doesn’t seem to matter that they can easily paint those walls themselves…again, just watch House Hunters and watch the whining start!). So make it easy…go neutral: pale beige or light gray will do it every time.
Have a painting project but don’t know where to start? I got you covered! Here are two FREEBIE GUIDES that break down the different types of paint you can use, plus the second guide breaks down the steps of how to paint different surfaces.
Can you paint laminate furniture?
Is it oil over latex…or the other way?
Don’t worry, these Freebie Guides are yours, along with 24/7 Access to my ENTIRE DESIGN RESOURCE LIBRARY. It is an ever-growing lists of Free Worksheets, Guides, Shopping Lists and more.
I’ll catch you back here next week, when I’m revealing another week of my One Room Challenge Room Makeover! Check back next week and help me count how many of these updates I use in my new room remodel!