For most Americans, the single biggest investment is our home. It is the one place we depend on to protect and secure us for our future. If you’re thinking of remodeling your home, there are many factors to consider.
Many surveys performed by realtor associations, remodeling associations, and similar industry professionals throughout the country consistently show that the best return on a remodel project investment is the kitchen and bath area. According to Remodeling Magazine, a leading industry trade publication, as well as the National Kitchen & Bath Association, the number one household improvement based on cost versus value is the kitchen remodel with bath remodel a close second.
Kitchen Trends home buyers are looking for
When remodeling your kitchen, you should be aware of today’s most important kitchen trends. The following are some of the key items that today’s home buyers are looking for:
- Open Kitchen concepts–kitchens that open up to the family room or great room.
- User-friendly, efficient and energy-saving appliances.
- Easily accessible and plentiful storage areas.
- Good lighting, particularly under-counter lighting.
- Quality craftsmanship in cabinetry.
- Crown and under cabinet moldings.
- Durable, solid surface or natural stone countertops.
- Pullout faucets with built-in water filtration systems.
- Light and open spaces, the more windows the better.
- Flooring that accentuates your cabinetry and countertops.
- Work / preparation islands.
- An efficient “work triangle” (where you can draw a triangle from the refrigerator to the sink, from the sink to cooking appliances, and then back to the refrigerator).
- Seating in the kitchen such as breakfast nook or a bar area with stools
Small changes that can increase the value of your home
If you are on a tight budget and simply can’t completely remodel your kitchen, here are some things you can do to increase the value of your home without spending more than you can afford:
Consider simply repainting walls, perhaps with a textured paint to add to the look and value. You might also want to paint or refinish old or worn cabinetry. If your countertops are in bad shape, why not update them with new material? There are many new patterns that do a great job of imitating solid surface material like Corian or granite. The sink area is also important, so you may want to get a new, larger sink and a more modern faucet with a pull-out nozzle. Finally, one of the easiest things you can do on your own is change your kitchen hardware such as knobs, pulls, faucet, fixtures, etc.
For resale and for yourself, safety is also very important. Utilizing the concept of “Universal Design” will always add value to your home because its principal philosophy is safety, taking into consideration how you are going to use the kitchen today as well as into the future. If you follow the principles of Universal Design, you will open yourself up to a wider variety of potential buyers.
Your Enjoyment + Resale Value
There are many reasons to remodel your kitchen and so many things you can do to increase its value, but don’t forget that remodeling should make your home more enjoyable while you are there! The wants and needs of you and your family should always be of highest consideration, so don’t get too caught up in what buyers might like. If you follow some of the trends I mentioned and keep things classic, you will have the best of both worlds—the enjoyment of your kitchen now and a great return on investment later.
One of the most important things you can do if planning a remodeling project is to do your research and find a licensed, certified and insured kitchen and bath remodeler and designer. Be sure you feel comfortable that your designer understands your environmental and design goals for your project, because this will be a very important partnership in your remodeling process. We also recommend to ask for references of clients who have remodeled in your area.
You can see the hottest trends in kitchen and bath remodeling at Allied Kitchen and Bath’s luxury showrooms located in Fort Lauderdale, where the company has been based since 1984. Celebrating over 33 years in the business, Allied has recently completed its newest design center featuring some of the most beautiful and luxurious kitchen and bath displays, closet systems, hardware, appliances and so much more. For more information call Bill Feinberg at (954) 564-1611 or e-mail bill@Alliedkitchenandbath.com.