While I sheepishly consider myself an expert in the field of remodeling, I would not say I’m the person you want making all your investment decisions. So when a client wants to spend thirty thousand dollars, sixty thousand dollars especially two hundred thousand dollars on my services I want to help them understand that they are making a smart and sound investment. (That’s how AK won the award for MarketPlace Ethics from the Atlanta Better Business Bureau, but we’ll save that story for another day!) This assurance has become even more important over the last 6-8 months. So if you don’t feel like reading the whole article above, let me tell you a little about what it says.
- Americans are expected to spend $217 billion on remodeling in 2009, according to Gopal Ahluwalia, staff vice president for research at NAHB. That’s up from the $210 billion spent in 2008 and not far off from the $218 billion spent in 2007. That’s pretty good, right? Funny we haven’t heard that encouraging statistic on the news!
- Siding replacement and window replacement. This is one of the main reasons AK has now devoted a whole page to this #1 investment decision! Throughout the country, both projects ranked among the highest in terms of “cost recouped,” , according to Remodeling magazine. In the Midwest in particular, that numbered hovered around the 70 percent mark for both projects.
- Kitchen remodel. “What sells the house is the kitchen and bathrooms,” says Ahluwalia at NAHB. Indeed, Remodeling magazine’s “cost recouped” figures bear that out with Midwesterners realizing 66.5 percent cost recouped on major kitchen remodels in the midrange price level—the minor remodels capturing nearly 70 percent.
- Bathroom remodel. Like the kitchen, a house with good bathrooms is gads more saleable than one without. And no, the glorious master bedroom bath is not dead, according to our experts. It just looks a little different these days. Skip the giant tub (few people actually use them and they are water guzzlers). Opt instead for a fantastic body spray shower and a smaller soaking tub, Sevon says. If your budget allows, go for mosaics or stone or fancy tilework in that shower area.
So, in a nutshell, there are still things you can do – and do well – that will be a good investment in your home while also making it more livable for your family in the here and now.