How much is too much renovation?

Monday, February 22, 2010

As I have mentioned before, when me and my husband bought this house our intention was to do a little "pick me ups" inside and out and sell the thing for a profit. This was going to be our Starter Home, and that was it.

The economy took a turn, housing dropped, and it seems we may be in this house longer than expected. The good thing is that with every DIY project and remodel I do, this "starter home" of mine is becoming MINE. I am loving it more and more! It is feeling more like my home, rather than a project. The bad news is how much is too much renovation when it comes to a starter home?

You got to be careful to look at your neighborhood and the comparables in the area (k, I am NOT a realtor, just pretending right now) and decide to renovate where it counts and where you will get the most return in the end. We certainly don't want to price ourselves out of the neighborhood and lose the money we put into it (haha, like our home is just amazing right?)
However, if you have a way of making a room look like a million bucks in a way cheap way, go for it!!!

So, next is our Kitchen. I am waiting on a little money flow that hopefully comes in March. But I may just get the urge to kick start it some weekend and paint my cabinets white. The kitchen excites me because I KNOW that is the #1 place we should invest in our home and get the biggest return! I am planning on our whole kitchen makeover to be UNDER $2000, but look like a $50k kitchen! can't wait :)

There are so many other things I would love to do- crown molding, new floor, light fixtures, new mirrors and fixtures in bathrooms etc etc etc.... but most likely will leave those things for later.

In the end, through all my little DIY projects I have realized that if it makes my home feel more like home, makes me happy, and fits in the budget it is all good in the end!

Leave a Comment

  1. I definitely know how all that goes. My fiance and I actually bought our house under impression that it would be our "forever home" and we have since decided it is not. So where do you draw the line on remodeling?
    My parents have been in their 1982 home since 1982 and they are putting in $60,000 worth of kitchen/bathroom/dining room work. I can't even imagine...

  2. I am tempted to paint my kitchen cabinets white as well, so am looking forward to your details. We bought our house high and will probably sell low, just like everyone else in this country. That's an attempt at humor in an otherwise unfunny situation.

  3. Paint them! why not, right. I was not going to at first but always wanted to, so now I say "what they hey"!! It will be WAY more of a custom look than it is now! I am excited

  4. I enjoyed reading this post because we are having the same discussion. We bought a "project house" and are in the process of flipping it right side up - it's build like a lodge with the living space upstairs (including kitchen). Apparently there WAS a view of the city when it was built. Not so now. But we were able to buy in a neighborhood that would have been out of our price range otherwise - so glad others couldn't see the potential!

    We're trying to decide what approach to take with our cabinets but buying new isn't in the budget. We did luck out on a beautiful tile for our kitchen. The store was closing and we scored $6s/f tile for $.99 s/f and I can't wait!!!

    As for your floor, we found what we wanted at a local store (Armstrong Cherry Bronze wood), researched online and found it for half the price they were asking at the store. We asked them to price match the online price, they couldn't come close. So then called a local independent store and he matched it :)

    Good luck and can't wait to see what you do!

  5. You've certainly got my attention. I'm ready for you to start on the kitchen immediately because I need to do mine too, and I'll have the opportunity to pick your brain for your wonderful ideas.

    It is so hard to determine whether the financial investment is a wise one -- I just know that I feel happier in a good-looking home, and that is kind of an investment in me, right?

  6. Kristina- thanks for writing! How do you like your floors? I would LOVE to see a picture of them!! And where did you find your amazing deal? I am all for deals!
    good luck on the project house! I know it takes a long time to make it yours, but that is half the fun, right?

  7. I've got my "forever" house (I hope) because we stayed in the temporary house for 10+ yrs which is now a rental but just covers the mtg. It's interesting to watch the HGTV-type shows (we went 10 yrs w/out satellite or cable so I'm just catching up)...shows like "Bang for the Buck" and how people actually remodel themselves out of a neighborhood. Good luck on your kitchen...can't wait to see!

  8. I think you're doing a great job! I really like your blog! Great Ideas!!

  9. We haven't installed the tile yet. We're still in demo mode. The area where the kitchen is going is still stripped down to the studs. I'll share a pic once we install the tile - I CAN'T WAIT!!

    As for the wood floors, I can't remember the name of the store, but will check with my hubby in the AM. I remember is was in Florida and even with shipping, the flooring was SIGNIFICANTLY less than what our stores are asking. The more you buy the more you save kind of deal. The wood we wanted went from $5.50 s/f locally at a large flooring store, to $3.12 s/f online for the quantity we needed. I'll post again with the site info.

  10. AH HA! I found it! Armstrong Grand Illusions in Cherry Bronze is what we ordered. Here's the site

    You can also find pictures of rooms with the wood at the Armstrong website.

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