I am pretty sure that we get asked that question just about every time we give a bid presentation and go over all the details with a new client. Typically, clients have signed off on that 20 or 30 year home mortgage for the home they bought, so they understand the investment. It’s funny though, when it comes to upgrading, replacing, or expanding their home, folks forget the first rule of home ownership: for many it is the single biggest investment that folks have.
Back to my story, is my (fill in the blank) remodel worth it? Before I can answer that question for my clients, I first need to have a better understanding of what “worth it” means to them. If you don’t know how long you may stay in your home, you cannot even begin to calculate if it will be “worth it” financially speaking. The larger the project, typically the longer you need to be in your home to have it pay off.
Let’s use a kitchen remodel as an example. If you invest around 35K into your kitchen, according to the Remodeling 2016 Cost vs. Value Report (www.costvsvalue.com), you can expect to get just a tick over 80% return on your investment in our geographical area, if you sold your home within a year of completing the project. Historically kitchens and bathrooms have always been the best investments in your home but there are many other smaller projects that according to the report, yields even bigger returns.
“Worth it” can also be in the form of comfort and lifestyle. In my mind, that brings up the old Benjamin Franklin list. My dad taught me about making the list when I was 16; he was helping me choose my first car. At the end of the lesson he said, ok, take a right and we will go home, take a left and we go make the deal. Well, that’s a different story for a different time. Needless to say, it was a good life lesson, I took a right and went home, but at times, I still wonder about that Camaro! Right then and there, I understood the difference between needs and wants, but I sure did want that Camaro!
Now keep in mind when you developing your project, don’t worry about who may or may not want to buy your house down the road. Sure some things can and do make your home less valuable. For example: if you have a 4 bedroom home, and eliminate one bedroom, it can devalue your home. If your trying to decide whether or not it’s a good idea to do a under counter microwave as opposed to built in microwave exhaust over the stove, and you ask me my opinion, I will probably answer that with another question for you. “What does that have to do with the price of tea in china”? Followed by a big smile of course, but seriously, don’t worry about who is going to buy your home someday maybe down the line in the future depending on??? My recommendation for you is to hire an experienced licensed and bonded contractor and do the project the way it works for you and your family’s needs and wants. We have some great contractors in town most of which happen to be part of the Olympia Master Builders as well as friends of mine.