A perfect time for home improvements

By Angie Kendel

As we slowly reopen our businesses and get back to a more normal routine, many of us are reluctant to make big changes.

The last few months have been a real shock to the system that many of us never believed we would experience in our lifetimes. This has left many of us a little uncertain of what lays ahead.

During times of uncertainly, many homeowners are reluctant to make big changes. Let’s face it, human nature dictates we stay with the known rather than risk the unknown. This means many of us who were previously thinking of moving may be thinking of staying put for a little while longer, playing the “wait and see” game. Who knows when or if the second wave of COVID-19 will hit and how bad it may be? So we choose to sit tight and wait it out. This may lead us to look at ways to make our current home that much more comfortable if we must remain a bit longer.

Doing critical updates can improve your property value for later when you do decide to sell. This is the perfect time to do those updates and build additional equity in your home! Something simple like paint or flooring and a basic re-decorating of a room or space can boost your well being after months of isolation — and increase your home’s value. An extensive gut and re-do of a major space like a kitchen, bathroom or basement will add significantly more value to both your current personal enjoyment and your property value when you sell.

Kitchens are the hub of the home.  Over the last few months, they may have also become our school and workspace. With families spending so much more time in their homes, inevitably the issues with the space become so much more annoying!

After 25+ years renovating homes, there has rarely been a space I could not improve on. It may require removing a wall, or simply creatively re-configuring a space to make it larger or more functional. There is always a solution for every problem!

The options for updates range from basics to a complete redo. A basic update may be flooring, countertops, backsplash and appliances. Perhaps painting the cabinets is an option if the floor plan works and you do not have the budget for new cabinets. This option can give you a completely updated look at a fraction of the cost! If you have the budget and you want an open concept that requires removing walls, this will certainly add the best value to your home in resale.

If you do decide to take this route, you want to ensure you work with a professional contractor and pull the appropriate building permits. Critical design elements become important details that can make or break a project.  Work with a professional who has a history of successes.

Bathrooms and basements are a close second for major updates. Bathrooms typically use the same space but may be reconfigured for a more functional design. Any space that works better and is updated will add value to the home.

Keep your materials selections current and blend with the colours in the rest of the home. We typically see more tile surrounds in the bathtub or shower. A rustic look is very popular in renos right now. Black fixtures and hardware are very common and add to that rustic feel. Barn doors are also in very high demand right now and are available in many different colours and finishes. 

Basement updates can be as simple as paint and flooring, or a complete gut and re-do. Older homes that only have one bathroom on the main level benefit from adding a second bathroom in the basement. This may require removing concrete and running new plumbing and drain lines, but the payoff for a fully finished lower level and a second bathroom is huge when it come to resale of your home.

Updates are well worth the effort and investment when it comes time to sell your home down the road.

Many homeowners are reluctant to do updates once they decide to sell.  It’s almost an emotional disconnect from the current home that prevents homeowners from wanting to “invest” anything in their current home once they’ve decided to sell it. However, no one knows what the market will be like over the next while.  If your home does not have any updates and the others selling in your area have been updated, your home will not sell for the same higher price as the updated homes. It could also take much longer to sell your home, often at a discounted price.

It is always less expensive for homeowners to do upgrades now and sell an updated home than to have buyers discount the cost for those same upgrades from their offer. Updated homes sell faster and for a better price — in any market!

I can be reached at angie@katreno.com or through our website at www.katreno.com