7 Current Trends in Home Remodeling

7 Current Trends in Home Remodeling
  • Opening Intro -

    Do you remember the soaring housing market of the 1990s and 2000s? Of course you do.

    Those two decades led to the biggest run up in housing prices we've seen in our lifetime.

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But, it was also followed by a historic collapse that began to show up in 2006 before emerging as the dominant trend in 2008. Four years later and most housing markets have yet to recover with analysts seeing no full recovery before 2013 at the earliest.

Homeowners are still making changes to their houses if they’ve had the good fortune to stay in place and the funds on hand to make some updates. In times past, they looked at their homes as their most important investment and updated accordingly. Today, most homeowners are simply glad to own a home and are managing this asset accordingly. That means home remodeling trends have changed to reflect today’s realities notes the Washington Post.

If you’re planning to stay in place for many years, the following remodeling ideas are worth considering:

1. Open up rooms. Instead of changing the footprint of your house, you can make better use of your space by opening up rooms. This option is especially popular in older homes where smaller rooms dominate. With an open floor plan you have more options for laying out your furniture.

2. Build a deck. Higher gas prices mean that more people will be spending time around their homes this summer. This means that “staycations” will emerge as the dominant way to save money. People who spend more time at home still want access to the outdoors and that means new decks will be added to expand the outdoor living space. Some people will add pools too to round out their outdoor planning.

3. Refurbish the bathroom. Gutting the bathroom can be expensive, therefore a more subtle update can still give this room a fresh look and add value. One area where a major difference can be made and at a price you can afford is with your bathroom tile. The job can be difficult and messy, therefore hiring the right professional to do the work is a must. Get three bids from flooring contractors and check each professional’s references. You may be able to save some money by negotiating to remove debris yourself.

4. Replace roofing. A well-maintained roof is essential for any house and if your roof leaks or looks drab, you’ll want to make this repair or replacement a priority. Keep in mind that shingle prices rise and fall with the price of oil, therefore you could be in for a sticker shock when shopping for a new roof. If your roof can be patched consider that option for now, waiting to replace it when oil prices stabilize or fall.

5. Let there be light. Dark houses require the use of much light and with electricity prices rising, bringing in more natural light is essential. If you’re planning to replace windows, consider expanding the window size in sun-facing rooms to draw in more light. Blinds and shades can help you manage light on those days when heat or cold is an issue. Consider adding skylights if you’re having the roof replaced.

6. Think long term. You may be young and years away from retirement, but any updates you do to your home might include adding features that make it more accessible. Deeply pitched outside stairs can be changed to make it easier for older people to climb and descend the stairs. An accessible shower can make bathing simpler while tall kitchen sinks can be lowered.

7. Pay cash or seek smaller financing. Big equity loans for home repairs and improvement are no longer a priority these days. Paying cash gives you more leverage with contractors, but if you need to take out a loan, then a larger down payment and a smaller loan can work to your advantage. Older Americans prefer not to have a mortgage or equity loan once they have retired.

Of course, if finances are tight, you’ll be waiting to do most any project until a later date. Our homes are still are castles, but they need not cost you a fortune to maintain or improve.

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Categories: Home Renovation

About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Auto Trends Magazine", an online publication. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and weblogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".