Remodeling a Home for Resale – Part 1
“I think we can do it.”
“Really, its all just cosmetic.”
“A little paint…some new fixtures…maybe finish the bathroom in the basement.”
“I would get an office. I could play video games as loud as I want. The boys would be two floors above me!”
Those were T’s, my husband, famous last words. Thankfully, I have a very good memory so whenever he says “NO MORE PROJECTS!” I remind him who’s idea this all was.
Buying our first home. Fixing it up. Make it our own. Then stand in front of said home in scarves, mittens and Santa hats for Christmas/Holiday cards…. An American Dream.
Sounds perfect, right?
The reality of that particular American Dream, like most of the rest of them, is the hard work and all the money that goes into that dream can make or break you. So far, knock on wood, our dream hasn’t broken us. Monetarily or physically. I am proud to say that everything we have done so far we have done ourselves, saving us loads of moolah. We gained some muscle and have learned a lot about home improvement.
The problem is that its not just pulling on some worn out paint splattered jeans, wrapping a bandanna around your head and painting a wall or two. Its not just hanging up a couple pictures and rearranging furniture hundreds of times to get it “just right.” Its not just changing out the world’s ugliest chandelier. Its so much more. When you buy a fixer-upper, there will always be more to “fix-up” than what you originally thought. Those hidden surprises are everywhere.
Our biggest challenge hasn’t been dry walling, building a retaining wall or wiring in new lighting. Our biggest challenge is that we don’t plan on living in this house until we are old and wrinkly. Far from that. T’s job requires us to be “flexible” with our living arrangements…meaning that they move us around – a lot. So when we bought our fixer-upper, we knew it would only be our fixer-upper for about 5 years. Hence. Thus. There in lies. Therefore… our problem. We are not fixing up our fixer-upper for us as much as we are fixing it up for resale.
Every choice we make we make for the future you-have-no-idea-how-much-work-we-put-into-this-house-you-better-appreciate-it family. That is the family who will fill the closet we built in the basement. That is the family who we think about when selecting a neutral toned tile for the entryway. That family haunts us in every decision we make because, we are remodeling for resale.
Remodeling for resale. Does it have to be a wash of neutral? Can it be a place that we can love and call our own and still be marketable in 3 years? Can our colorful style really be reflected in beige and white?
That is the question we are tackling project by project. Next up is the kitchen. Check back and see how we do balancing that family’s needs with ours.