How to Prioritize Updating Your Home
Have you recently purchased a home that wasn’t ideal — you were glad to get it! — but need to make some changes to make it more your style? Or, have you decided to stay put and finally make some updates, to take advantage of the equity you have in your home? If your to-do list is long, and you’re wondering where to start, check out these trends reported by Houzz and Thumbtack.
- Kitchens come first. Whether it’s a mini makeover or a full gut, kitchens are at the top of many homeowners’ lists. The kitchen is the heart of the home, and it offers the best return on investment among home improvement projects.
- Because we are traveling again and visiting friends and family, smaller spaces, such as guest bathrooms and guest bedrooms, as well as powder rooms and laundry rooms, are on many lists.
- Updating or creating a home office is not quite as popular as it was a couple of years ago. Most homeowners already have completed this project, or are going back into the office.
- Open floor plans aren’t going away. Homeowners still are knocking down walls to open up their space. Better sight lines, increased functionality and easy entertaining are some of the many reasons to remove a wall or two.
Warning: Only a licensed and experienced contractor, architect or structural engineer can determine if a wall within your house safely can be taken down. Parts of the wall may need to be opened up to determine whether the wall can be removed. Expect additional costs if the wall is load-bearing, as supports (beams, pillars) must be added.
- Smaller projects, such as TV mounting, ceiling fan installation and replacing light fixtures, are quick jobs to complete. Color changes, such as interior painting and wallpaper removal or installation, also commonly are found on to-do lists. If you’re short on time, these projects might need to move to the top of your list.
- Master bath remodeling and tile installation are perennially popular on project lists. Perhaps you have a leak, or you want a bigger shower. Expect this project to be pricey, but worth it.
- Popular exterior projects include landscaping, tree trimming, fence and gate installations, exterior painting, concrete installations, deck or porch remodeling, gardening, play equipment construction, gazebo installations and sod installations. These projects can enhance curb appeal and raise the value of your home.
Many people prioritize interior over exterior updates, and others, vice versa. Whatever your preference, consider that some exterior projects are best completed seasonally.
- New floors are a part of almost every interior update. You might be adding family-friendly luxury vinyl planks to your home, or soft, stain-resistant carpet to your bedrooms. If it finally is time to refinish your beat-up hardwoods, today’s floors are functional and fabulous.
Pro tip: If you’re considering removing textured ceilings, or taking on another messy project, the time to do it is before you paint and/or change out flooring.
– Elisabeth Stubbs is one of the owners of Enhance Floors & More, one of Atlanta’s top-rated flooring dealers, located in Marietta.