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Thought Bathrooms and Kitchens got all the Home Renovations? Think Again!

13 September 2013

When homeowners think of the different home renovations they can make to increase the value of their home, it’s often the kitchen and the bathrooms that they think of first. Or are they? While it’s known that remodeling these two rooms in any home will up the resale value of a home, and help with the enjoyment of the home while the homeowner is still living in the home, a new survey shows that homeowners are actually starting to work from the bottom up. Meaning that it’s the floors they’re working on first.

It was Houzz that recently took a survey to see what projects homeowners are taking on when making home renovations. And while Houzz is an interior design company based in California, the survey they conducted polled nearly 3,000 registered Canadian homeowners. And the results were a little surprising.

As you can see from the chart above, renovating flooring came in as the first project today’s homeowners are likely to take on, with bathrooms and kitchens falling behind.

“Changing the floor immediately face lifts the place, hence, increasing the value and improving the look of the home,” says Geele Soroka, principal of design at Sublime Interior Design.

But even though Soroka cites increasing the resale value first as the reason why homeowners are starting to rip out their old floors and put in new ones, that’s actually not the biggest reason why homeowners are doing it.

The chart above shows the exact reasons why homeowners are choosing to take their renovations to the mat, showing resale value is not as important to them as simply loving and enjoying the look and feel of their home. So says one homeowner from Caledon East, Ontario, Sarah Jestin. She says that in addition to making her home a nicer place to live, she also did it for financial reasons.

“For us, the floor is simply cheaper to upgrade and a lot easier to maintain,” she says. “Plus the laminate looks great, even helping lighten a room in one instance.”

While cheaper home renos might be good for homeowners though, they can quickly go awry if you don’t do them properly. The same Houzz survey asked homeowners if they were planning on hiring a contractor for the job, and a shocking 76 per cent said that they were planning on making their home renos a DIY project.

But Jestin says that it’s just not worth the aggravation, and she’s right. It’s also not always true that doing it alone is cheaper in the long run.

“Hire a contractor,” she says. “Contractors are handy in problem solving and they receive discounts on materials, so there is not a lot of additional cost in hiring one and there are fewer headaches.”

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