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“Do you think it’s wise to start a remodeling project this year? If so, why? If not, why not?” Before I get to my answer, I just want to let you know that I posted this question on our Facebook discussion page. I’d love to get your thoughts. You can post your comments here on the blog or click on the question to post on Facebook.
I think 2010 is a great time to undertake a renovation because interest rates are low and the recession has caused the cost of labor and materials to go down. It’s not unrealistic to assume that you’ll get quotes that are far less than they would have been before the economy tanked.
I believe the housing market in the Bay Area will rebound. It won’t go back to the crazy appreciation we saw during the bubble, but I think it’s reasonable to expect a slow and steady increase in values as the economy strengthens.
Why live with a bad floor plan or lack of space? Remodeling is the perfect solution if you love your location, aren’t planning to move anytime soon, and have access to funds. It can improve your home’s functionality, give you the space you need, and add value.
Considering a renovation? If you haven’t undertaken a remodeling job before, it’s hard to know what to expect. The first phase is to define the scope of your project and gather information. Let’s say your master bedroom is cramped, you don’t have enough closet space, and you’re sick of your tiny outdated master bath. So the scope of your project would be to enlarge your master bedroom and bath and create a walk-in closet.
You’ve made a few sketches of what you’d like, but they weren’t to scale and you can’t draw anyway. You realize that you need a designer, but because you don’t know what it will cost to build, you’re hesitant to move forward. At this point getting bids from remodeling contractors is a good idea. They’ll meet with you, look at the existing space and take measurements, and discuss the potential cost of various options. These meetings will result in bids on your project that you can compare and, if the cost is manageable, choose a contractor. Then the design, planning, and permitting process begins. You’ll also need to secure financing. Allow a few months for the entire process. I’ll go into more detail in future blogs.
Spring is coming. I found a good list of tips to keep your home in top condition.
There are those who claim that we don’t get real winters in California. While we may not experience the snowstorms and freezing temperatures that are common in other parts of the country, our winter rains can cause serious damage.
To avoid costly repairs and keep your home looking its best, your gutters and downspouts need to be in good shape to function properly. Check that they are clear of debris and securely attached. The area where the base of the foundation meets the ground should be graded so that water drains away from your home. Water from your downspouts that dumps out in this area can cause deterioration, mold, mildew, and other problems. Attaching flexible downspout extensions is an inexpensive solution. They’re available at most home centers. Another option that has the added benefit of conserving water is rainbarrel. Rainwater flows into the barrel from your downspout and then can be used when needed to water your garden. It’s an old-fashioned favorite that’s coming back into vogue. The 21st century version has spigots to attach a garden hose or a drip irrigation system.