Tuesday, 20 April 2010

What do you want to get out of your home renovation?

Due to the recent mortgage rule changes and the upcoming HST we are seeing a large upsurge in properties for sale and consequently sold on the market in the GTA. This seems to be a good time to talk about motivations to renovate on a larger scale. We are not talking about renovations such as painting or refinishing the floors to personalize the space or mandatory ones such as electrical rewiring due to existing knob and tube wiring – we are talking about the larger renovations that will increase your property value.

The timing and motivation of these renovations really depends on the length of time you want to stay in the house.

Let’s say you want to live in the house for about 5 years, i.e. relatively short term. In this case it would be best to add bathrooms and powder rooms, do kitchen makeovers or add extra bedrooms and open concepts, before you move in. As even the best renovation processes are disruptive, can be lengthy and somewhat stressful, it is best to tackle them before you get too comfortable. By the time you want to sell the house again your home has increased in value, you had the benefit of a great and comfortable space to live in for the better part of 5 years and therefore your return on investment should be very favorable.

The best time to get a designer in to prepare for the renovation is even before you close on the sale. Hence you could have your building permit drawings ready to submit just after the property is yours.

New windows, external cladding, even basement renovations could be done after you moved in as they are often less disruptive. These renovations still give good value, but less than the major renovations listed above.

On the opposite scale in case you want to live in the house for a very long time, then it will be best to live in the house for a year or so to see and plan your renovation with great care. In this case you are designing and renovating exclusively for yourself and the increase in property value is nice, but secondary. Yes, your renovation will be disruptive just after you got comfortable in your new home, but taking the time to plan the renovation you want will give you a lot more satisfaction in the long run.

Martina Ernst
Wo-Built Inc.
Wo-Built: Turning Your Dream Home Into a Reality (Again !!!!)Wo-Built: Renovations and RecessionWo-Built: Getting Your Home Ready for Resale

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