There are a million stories in Seattle about great remodeling projects that increase the livability and value of a home. I’ve written a few myself over the years.
Rarely does anyone write about what you should NOT do when remodeling a home. One caveat here, what plays in Peoria does not necessarily play in Seattle, Bellevue or Redmond. Every area of the country has different styles, so remodeling trends will vary according to the region of the country. So if you live in the eastern suburbs of Seattle, such as Bellevue, Redmond and Kirkland, this post is for you!
This post was inspired by an email I received from George Rinehart of Rinehart Inspections. We’ve added to his list because of some remodeling mistakes we’ve seen in homes over the years. Unfortunately, we’ve had to tell some sellers their homes may be worth less because of a remodeling mistake.
Here are the top ten remodeling mistakes:
- Eliminating the garage.
- Eliminating one bay or a 1/2 bay of a two car garage.
- Adding a sunroom.
- Taking out all the grass in your yard.
- Taking down a fence that encloses the backyard.
- Reducing the number of bedrooms by enlarging one or turning one into a closet.
- Installing different color carpets throughout the house.
- Eliminating windows.
- Taking out a bathroom to increase another room’s size.
- Eliminating a laundry room and moving it to the garage.
The elimination of a garage to increase living space is a perfect example of a remodeling mistake. Not having a garage can easily be a $25,000-$30,000 reduction in the asking price for a home. Even with the price reduction, many buyers won’t even look at a home without a garage. Not having the garage keeps many buyers from walking through the front door. A laundry room is another thing most people want, so to eliminate one to increase space for something else is usually not a good idea.
Ultimately, every home is salable for a price, but some of the changes listed can be expensive, not only for the cost to do the remodel, but also in market time and the ultimate sales price for a home. Many of the above changes may work for you as an individual or family, but not for the next home owner.
There are other costly remodeling mistakes. Can you think of any others that could “cost” a home owner dollars when selling their home?