When homeowners consider remodeling projects, they almost always think about the return on investment for these projects. How much value will they add to their home? Which projects will hold their value over time? Will the homeowner get their investment back when they sell their home? Are they going to over improve their home and end up being the most expensive home in the neighborhood? Perhaps if you want to make an investment in your current house, look at home improvement remodeling companies like these at karinrossdesigns.com/lees-summit/.
Louis Weiher, owner of Carmel Builders in Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin, has a distinctly different outlook on remodeling that he shares with his clients. He says, “I hear all the time from people we speak with throughout southeastern Wisconsin: ‘I’m not sure I’m going to get my money back on my remodeling project.’ And for some reason in our industry, there are a lot of companies afraid to state the truth, which is that remodeling projects, similar to home ownership in general, may not be good financial investments.”
For example, consider a homeowner with a $400,000 house looking at a $100,000 kitchen renovation. After the remodel, the home will increase in value, but it is unlikely to be worth $500,000. Says Louis, “If it’s a kitchen remodel in the Milwaukee area, the returns vary but they are somewhere in the neighborhood of 60 to 75 percent of the cost. The homeowner has to realize that the whole value of the project may not be captured. But the homeowner should also think about what they gain by having that brand new kitchen. They’re going to get experiences; they’re going to have the ability to host large events, have their extended family over for meals. In terms of their daily lives, perhaps each day will be better because they and their spouse and kids will have a special and comfortable place in the morning to interact and have breakfast.” So the choice to remodel ultimately becomes a quality of life investment more than a financial investment.
Home-ownership has always been synonymous with the American Dream. But as Louis points out, it’s never been about how much money you make when you eventually sell your home. “Owning your home as part of the American Dream is about providing your family with a secure living space”, he says, “it’s about the experiences and memories you achieve when having a home to call your own.” Remodeling, he counsels, should be thought of in the same manner.
Investing in one’s home is a matter of prioritizing what’s important to the homeowner and what they value in terms of quality of life. “Everybody’s different. For some people, a quality life is about traveling. For others, it’s having a second home or owning a luxury vehicle. If that’s the case, you should probably accept your house the way it is, because you really want to spend your extra money elsewhere.” Homeowners must first consider how much of their money they want to spend on their home relative to their other priorities.
Louis says that remodeling works well “for people who love their current homes, their current neighborhoods, or both. It’s best for people who want to stay where they are.” So if you don’t love your home or neighborhood, best to look elsewhere than remodeling your existing space.
Louis says that homeowners who wish to remodel should be committed to living in their homes for more than a few years. He cautions, “If you’ve only been in your house for a short time and don’t plan to stay there long-term, more than likely remodeling is probably not a good idea.” Louis counsels these homeowners that it is best to postpone a remodeling project and instead use the money to purchase a home they want to live in for a long period of time. “Remodeling a home you’re only going to be in for less than five years is generally not recommended because you’re not only not going to get the money out of the remodel but you’re also not going to get to experience the enjoyment of living in your remodel space.”
Ultimately, homeowners need to understand that they may not get every penny back on the remodel as an investment. Says Louis, “When I talk about remodeling, I don’t talk about it as this great financial investment. It may not be. But most people don’t live for financial investment. At the end of your life, you don’t sit down and tally up how much money you made or what your best investments were. You ask: Did I live a good life? Was I happy? Did I see my kids grow up? Did I have family experiences? Am I glad I remodeled because now that my kids are grown, I have space for my kids to come home with the grandkids?”
So if you’re thinking about remodeling, make sure to think about the value of the experience beyond just a financial investment. Says Louis, “If the homeowner is focused on what the remodeling project gives them in terms of experience and desired quality of life, it will guarantee that they get that value out of it.”
Don’t hesitate to contact us about your potential remodeling project!