Tag Archives: home renovations

Home Improvements: Renos that boost your R.O.I.

Renos that boost your R.O.I.

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Renos that boost your R.O.I.

Illustration by Rachel Joanis

So, you’ve decided to sell your home. That means you’ve also likely tossed around the idea of a home renovation to yield the best possible profit. Here are four home renovations that yield the highest payoff.

Kitchen

It’s the beating heart of the home. This is the most-significant and most-expensive room to renovate, but it also gives you the highest return on your investment. There are a few reasons for this. Kitchens are a pain to renovate, from the inconvenience of functioning without a kitchen for weeks (or months) and the effort required to coordinate or complete the work. That means buyers are often willing to pay a premium for a home with a brand-new kitchen. Always choose quality over quantity – a cheap or poorly done renovation can decrease your home’s value.

Bathrooms

Much like the kitchen, bathrooms are difficult to renovate, and many homebuyers will pay extra for the convenience of having it done for them. Spa-inspired bathrooms are a common upgrade in older homes when the bath was considered a utilitarian room versus a feature space. A bigger, brighter bathroom with custom elements, such as vanity and countertops, unique tile work, fabulous lighting and extras like a steam shower, make-up area or a meditation zone can bring in the bucks on resale.

Income suite

An income suite is a biggie – especially in pricey urban housing markets such as Toronto and Vancouver. Young homebuyers often look to tenants to help them pay off their hefty mortgage, and multi-generational households can reside together with greater cost-efficiency and privacy. Look at secondary suites for rent in the area to get a feel for what those units look like, and how much they rent for. This will be a great selling point for your home.

In the current sellers’ market, a fairly-priced home shouldn’t stay on the market for too long. Every homeowner is looking to get the biggest bang for their buck, and the quickest possible sale – which translates to even more money in your pocket. Work with your realtor to determine what renovations make sense in the current marketplace, and for some tried-and-true advice on how to get everything done.

Tips

Here are some more tips to help sellers keep their eyes on the prize:

  1. Renovate for your target buyer, not for yourself. Your realtor can advise you on the types of renovations that will resonate with buyers in your area, and of the kind of home you’re selling.
  2. Work with an experienced contractor who’s familiar with the type of work you’re planning. Check out their portfolio, ask for references and contact them.
  3. Before any work begins, ensure your contract stipulates precisely what work is being done, what materials and products are being used, the budget and the timeline for completion.
  4. Do it by the book. Don’t try to save on costs by skipping the permits or taking shortcuts in the work. This will only end up hurting your bottom line, not helping.

Heather Hadden, Principal at Hadden Homes, notable top real-estate professional in GTA is focused on providing comprehensive full-service real-estate support for all new and existing homeowners.

Making you love where you live once again.


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Enhance the value of your home renovation with skylights

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Enhance the value of your home renovation with skylights

With home renovations on a steady and constant increase, the question always surfaces about how best to spend your renovation dollars. While it’s true that kitchen and bathroom renovations, as well as “curb appeal” will yield a good return on your investments; you should not discount the importance of natural light in your home. Maximizing light not only enhances the esthetics of a space, it increases the home’s resale value and quite simply – it also makes us feel better to see the great morning sunshine. We love the look and feel of an entire wall of windows that lets in beautiful rays of light and a fresh breeze, however, windows are not the only means of natural light for our homes. This is one of the reasons you should consider adding a skylight to your home renovation.

We all have those areas of our home, the space over our staircase, or a bathroom perhaps, where light struggles to reach. Perhaps you’ve been thinking about turning your attic into a third floor living space. Whatever your particular situation is, consider adding a skylight or sun tunnel to these darker areas of your home, and let the sunshine in.

In tight quarters, the added benefit of a skylight over a sun tunnel is that it allows you to introduce not only more natural light into a room, but it also helps ventilate the space so you can “breathe” better. Windows are without a doubt, designed to let in the natural light and circulate air throughout a room; however, hot air rises, and so will any toxins or pollutants in your home. Incorporating skylights will improve the air quality of your home – and the vast amount of added natural light is a wonderful feature.

To maximize the benefits of skylights, you need to consider a few important details; the first is the placement in your home. A skylight is not a window, though some often think the two are interchangeable. Windows are designed to limit the glare of high-angled sun in the summer and to catch the low-angled rays of sun in the winter. Skylights tend to do the opposite, so it is rather important to consider the placement of the skylights on your roof, as well as the orientation of the sun around your house. Though we desire maximum natural light, you may also want to consider the option of Velux blinds to preserve your furniture and flooring. Also, consider the selection of appropriate skylights for your space so that you can ensure this design feature is maximizing its full potential on the interior of your home; be it the size, style or operation method, (yes, skylights open) understanding the options will help ensure wise design choices.

Whatever you decide, skylights add an architectural element to a room while bringing the outdoors in and adding a burst of natural light.

For more information, go to velux.ca

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Another survey says!

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Another survey says!

In July, Houzz released its annual home renovation report. Here are some of the key findings:

  • Clients consulted with an average of 2.5 contractors or builders before signing a contract.
  • More than half (56 percent) of all Canadian homes surveyed reported undergoing renovations in 2017, spending a median price of $16,000.
  • Kitchens remain the most popular room to renovate (28 percent), followed by bathrooms at 24 percent.
  • The average spend on kitchens was $3,750 for small spaces and $12,000 for any that were 90-sq.ft. or larger.
  • The vast majority (80 percent) of owners are seeking cash deals. First-time homeowners are the group most likely to seek payment by credit card.

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Industry Expert: Prepare to Succeed

Industry Expert: Prepare to Succeed

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Industry Expert: Prepare to Succeed

by Bryan Tuckey

Preparation is key to managing disruptions during renovation

Almost every renovation project will come with some disruption to the homeowner, but there are a number of things that you can do to minimize the disarray.

Some people don’t want to live in an active construction site and opt to vacate their homes and live elsewhere for part of, or the duration of their renovation. However, for most people, living elsewhere for several months is not financially viable, so they must find ways to live in a home under renovation.

Planning ahead and preparing your home, your stuff, your family and yourself, are important steps you can take to minimize the disruption.

As part of the overall planning of your renovation project, work with your renovator to devise a project plan that best accommodates you and your family, and always be sure to work with a professional RenoMark renovator.

BILD created the RenoMark program in 2001 to help homeowners differentiate professional renovators from underground contractors. RenoMark renovators abide by a Code of Conduct, which includes providing written contracts that carry at least $2 million in liability insurance and offer a minimum of two years warranty on all work. You can find a RenoMark professional at renomark.ca.

Photography: bigstock.com
Photography: bigstock.com

Talk to your renovator about your household’s daily schedule, any vacations that you have planned, or any special circumstances that need to be accommodated so that they can be factored into the work plan and schedule for your project. That way, particularly disruptive or messy parts of the project, such as refinishing hardwood floors, can be arranged for when you are away or can make alternate, short-term living arrangements. And busy on-site work times can be aligned with your family’s schedule so crews won’t be hammering away while you are trying to feed your kids breakfast.

Make sure you discuss which parts of your house will be impacted by your renovation project. Depending on factors like plumbing and wiring, your renovator and work crews may need access to more than just the immediate area being renovated.

Clean out the areas that will be impacted by the renovation and consider temporarily removing valuables such as art, from other parts of your home that could be impacted by vibration. Depending on the scale of your project, you might want to rent storage space nearby, or bring in a portable storage container. If you are storing things in boxes, be sure to label the boxes with an inventory. That way when you need something, you can find it.

Make a plan for how you will live in your home while it is under construction. Kitchen renovations can be especially challenging. Figure out where your temporary “kitchen” will be and what you need to make it work for your family.

Plan and stock up on meals that can be easily prepared in your temporary kitchen. Look at how you might be able to utilize your small appliances and your BBQ when you don’t have access to your oven. You will likely be without running water in your short-term kitchen, so make sure you consider how you will clean up after food preparation and wash dishes.

When you encounter trying moments, and you probably will at some point when you are living in a home under construction, just think about how great your remastered space will be or what it will be like to cook in your new kitchen.

Bryan Tuckey is president and CEO of the Building Industry and Land Development Association and a land-use planner who has worked for municipal, regional and provincial governments.

Follow him on Twitter @bildgta, facebook.com/bildgta, and bildblogs.ca.



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Special BILD EVENTS

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Special BILD EVENTS

Five Steps to a Successful Renovation for your Home or Condo
Are you planning or do you have questions about renovating your home or
condo suite? Don’t miss this FREE seminar – “Five Steps to a Successful
Renovation”.

This presentation features two experienced, professional RenoMark™
renovators who will provide the five steps you can take to achieve a
successful renovation. Hear from professional renovators who work in
the renovation market every day and get the tools to help you renovate
with confidence.

Whether you are making modest changes or transforming a space into your
dream home, renovating can be an exciting and rewarding experience by
taking the time to plan the project carefully.

Plan to attend:

Doors Open: 6:30pm
Time: 7:00 – 9:00pm
Location: 20 Upjohn Street, Toronto (York Mills and Don Mills Road area)
Space is limited
FREE PARKING

Click on the date below for more information

May 16, 2017

June 20, 2017

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Storage planning is the key to a successful home renovation project

Storage planning is the key to a successful home renovation project

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Storage planning is the key to a successful home renovation project

by Jason Siebenga

Spring has arrived and it’s time to tackle the home renovation project you’ve been planning all winter long.

You also may have noticed a lot of friends and family are taking on home renovations, and that’s for one reason: as house prices continue to rise in several Canadian real estate markets, many homeowners are choosing to upgrade instead of buying new.

As a result, we’re not only seeing an increase in dollars being spent on home renovation projects, but we’re also seeing a rising number of people needing an on-site storage solution while a renovation takes place.

At BigSteelBox, we’ve seen it all when it comes to home improvement. Some homeowners prefer to do everything themselves. From knocking down walls, to putting up drywall, and completing DIY projects, many take pride in taking on a big project. On the opposite end of the spectrum are the homeowners who put all the control into the hands of designers and contractors. Aside from choosing tiles and paint colours, they aren’t interested in the getting their hands dirty and prefer to leave it to the professionals. What we’ve found is that the majority of homeowners are somewhere in the middle.

Regardless whether you are a DIYer or not, every renovation project poses one question: “What should I do with my belongings while the renovation is taking place?”

At BigSteelBox we provide homeowners with a convenient, flexible way to store their belongings any length of time. A steel storage container is delivered to you, which you can either keep on your property, or have stored at one of our secure locations.

We’ve been helping Canadians execute their home renovation projects for almost 20 years. After everything we’ve seen, we’re always happy to offer a few tips on how to make a renovation go as smoothly as possible.

Plan ahead to reduce stress during and after your home renovation

First and foremost, do your homework. Assess what sort of condition your home is in before the renovation begins. Since you’ll be emptying out room(s) in your house, you’ll need to figure out how long you’re going to be displaced.

Be aware that even if you empty out rooms thinking it’s only going to be a couple of weeks, those weeks can turn into months, and you could be storing your belongings longer than anticipated. This means that items you thought you could go without for a few weeks, you’ll now need to access.

The option of storing your items right outside of your front door means you’ll always have easy access to them, resulting in less stress over the long term. In addition, knowing your belongings are secure and protected from the elements means they will be clean and ready to move when it’s time to put them back into your home.

Determine your storage needs and declutter

Before your renovation begins, take stock of everything you’ll need out of your home during construction and determine how many items you’ll need to store. Most homeowners don’t realize how much stuff they have accumulated over the years. When it comes to clearing out a room, many are overwhelmed by how many possessions they actually have.

When your storage container arrives on site, a good rule of thumb is to only store what you plan on keeping. That way you’re maximizing your storage space and increasing efficiency. In addition, taking inventory is a great way to declutter your home and ensure every item you have is one you truly want.

If certain decorative items or furniture won’t fit in your new design, look at selling or donating them. When the renovation is complete, you’ll be amazed by how much more space you have.


Maximize the space in your storage container

A storage container can serve a number of purposes during a home renovation. Firstly, it’s a great place to keep household items safe and clean during construction. Additionally, if you’re doing the renovation yourself, the storage container can also be used to store tools and equipment. These items are often expensive and having a secure place to store and protect them is important.

Once you’ve moved all of your belongings into storage, it’s important to keep them organized. This way you can access them quickly and easily during and after the renovation. When it comes to making sure your space is organized, we can provide tips on keeping it in order and even provide brackets for shelving inside your container.

Now your tool belt is loaded with tips and storage solutions, so you’re ready to get to work. Whether you have the power drill in hand or plan on kicking your feet up and watching someone else do the work, the question of what to do with your belongings while the renovation takes place has been solved. Happy renovating!

Jason Siebenga is the president of BigSteelBox. The company has been offering Canadians a better way to move and store their belongings since 1999. By bringing the storage to the customer, BigSteelBox has eliminated some of the most stressful aspects of moving and storage.

bigsteelbox.com


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Industry Expert: BILD - Weathering a Winter Reno

Industry Expert: BILD – Weathering a Winter Reno

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Industry Expert: BILD – Weathering a Winter Reno

by Bryan Tuckey

Best practices to ensure a winter renovation proceeds smoothly despite cold weather challenges

Winter might seem like an unusual time to undertake a renovation but with the right knowledge and a bit of preparation it can be a great time to add value to your home. Although we are at the end of this winter season, keep these helpful tips top of mind and ensure a future winter home improvement project proceeds as smoothly as possible.

“The secret to a successful winter renovation is good planning and working closely with your renovator,” says Sam Lapidus, RenoMark renovator and chair of BILD’s Renovation and Custom Builder Council. Talking to your renovator in advance about potential challenges can help you save time and money in the long run. Snow and cold weather are two of the biggest factors in a winter renovation and they require precautionary measures so nothing is left to chance.

Major renovations often require you to move out of your home for a few weeks. To ensure that your contractor has easy access to and from your home, you’ll need to make arrangements for shoveling snow and salting steps in your absence. Some renovation companies may offer the service but you’ll need to discuss it in advance. It may come at an added cost, so make sure it is noted in your renovation contract.

Photography: Bigstock.com
Photography: Bigstock.com

When you move out of your home it will likely cool down significantly, even if the heat is still on. This increases the chance of water freezing inside your pipes, which could cause them to burst. To minimize the risk, have a plumber heat the water line coming into your house or call your municipality to shut the water off at the street side.

Homeowners doing a winter renovation in semi-detached houses or townhomes need to be mindful of how it may affect their neighbours. These types of homes have shared walls, and if the temperature in your home drops significantly, it can affect the comfort level of those living on the other side of the wall. If the shared wall is not properly insulated, talk to your renovator about installing some temporary insulation to prevent heat loss. This is another issue that should be discussed in advance as it may result in additional fees.

Special precautions may be required when renovating homes with flat roofs. Major renovations or additions may compromise the structural durability of the home. Snow can build up on the roof, and if your home is not structurally finished, it may not hold up the weight. For an added fee, your renovator can have someone shovel the snow or have an electrician install a specialized heater. After the renovation you can choose whether to remove the heater or leave it to prevent snow permanently.

It is very important that your contract outlines the full scope of work and all associated costs. Avoid renovators who urge you to forego a written contract. It’s a sign that you are not working with a professional. Verbal agreements make it hard for you to hold your renovator accountable for sub-par work and you will not have a point of reference if there is a conflict over payment.

Make sure you always work with a professional renovator. There are hundreds of them across the GTA. A good place to find one is at renomark.ca—home of the national RenoMark program. All RenoMark renovators agree to abide by a code of conduct, which holds them to a number of obligations. In addition to providing a written contract, they offer a minimum two-year warranty, are covered by at least $2 million worth of liability insurance and carry all applicable licences and permits.

Your home is your largest asset so it deserves a pro, no matter what time of year it is.

Bryan Tuckey is president and CEO of the Building Industry and Land Development Association and a land-use planner who has worked for municipal, regional and provincial governments.

Follow him on Twitter @bildgta, facebook.com/bildgta, and bildblogs.ca.


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Home improvements to add value to your property

Home improvements to add value to your property

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Home improvements to add value to your property

Realty Biz News

Whether you’re looking to move house or simply upgrade the home you’re living in, adding certain features or fixing particular problems, can add value to your property. So, it’s worthwhile spending a bit of time researching all the options, from simple, cosmetic makeovers to structural repairs, extensions and renovations.

This guide gives you an overview of all the factors, including internal and external options to consider. It also tells you the top five fixes you can do for under ($200), as well as the five improvements that will add the most value to your home.

http://realtybiznews.com/home-improvements-to-add-value-to-your-property/98737824/


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Five tips to help plan a home renovation

Five tips to help plan a home renovation

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Five tips to help plan a home renovation

MoneySense

New year, new renovation budget.

Now, before you go off on a rant about how foolish it is to renovate a home, stop. Not every home renovation project is a good investment — nor it is a good use of disposable income. But not every remodel project is a bad idea. That sort of black and white blanket statement just isn’t helpful, particularly when we all know someone who renovated and sold their home for top dollar.

http://www.moneysense.ca/spend/real-estate/renovations/5-tips-to-help-plan-a-home-renovation/


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Home improvement trends

Home improvement trends

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Home improvement trends

Ottawa Citizen

With mortgage qualification rules becoming stricter and potential housing bubbles emerging, home renovations are at the forefront this year. By the middle of last year economists expected renovation spending to rise. With strong demand and low supply, renovating seemed like a safer, more affordable option, as opposed to purchasing a new property.

The TrustedPros Team has collected data from over 2 million users regarding budgeting habits, home renovation trends and contractor expectations. They’ve compiled the data and now know how homeowners planned to spend their money.

http://ottawacitizen.com/life/homes/home-improvement-trends-of-2016


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