Is there anything you'd never, ever do to your home? As you can imagine, after years of writing, I have received my fair share of home decor and renovation comments and questions. One of the most frequent inquiries I receive is from people who want to know if there's anything I wouldn't do to my house, because of resale.
There is nothing I would never do to my home in the name of resale and if you look at my home, you can see that it's true. I don't follow trends, I never play it safe with my decor and I get called on it all the time.
The warnings come from both from online and print publication readers and real life friends.
You know resale is very important to keep in mind when renovating and decorating.
I can't believe you painted that whole wall red! Big mistake. That will turn a lot of people off.
You don't have stainless steel appliances in your kitchen?? Everyone wants stainless today. Plus, you chose laminate countertops over granite or marble or solid surface? Why would you do that? That will cost you in the long run.
You painted a small bathroom, with no windows a very dark color? That will not stage well.
You put in a pool? Are you crazy? No one wants a pool anymore, it's so much work.
You converted your fireplace to gas? People like wood.
How will you ever sell this place?
Oh boy. If I listened to all those voices, I would be living without color, with appliances I hate, a fireplace I could not turn on and off at the flick of switch and instead of floating around on my giant sunflower with my family in ninety degree heat, I would be sweating my tail off on my patio.
Um, no thank you.
You see, I live here. Now. I don't care about what will show well, stage well or sell well. When the time comes, I will do what is necessary to right the ship.
And by that, I mean clean it up. That's all.
Yes, I know that today's buyers want move in ready homes. I get it. It's a far cry from my own real estate shopping days when vision was a necessity and location was everything. They don't want to renovate or even repaint and frankly, some can't see past the current owner's decor.
But I can't live my life like that, in anticipation of what some fictitious buyer may or may not find appealing at some undetermined point in the future.
So I do as I please. It's my home and I don't care if I am going to live here for two years or twenty two, I want to be comfortable.
And I have been. Surrounded by a lot of loud colors in small rooms and a very wet backyard.
Ah, but if there is one thing I have learned as I sink deeper into middle age, it's never say never. I have eaten crow too many times over the years and apparently I am going to do it again.
Turns out there are actually three things I would never, ever do to my home in the name of resale.
And one of them does indeed involve paint. Can you believe it? Paint - the most innocuous renovation tool and the easiest thing to change.
It made the never list.
This weekend, while I was staring at my stained and beaten up bedroom wood floor, annoyed by its awful state, I started brainstorming ways to mask the damage without the whole dusty sanding and smelly varnishing nightmare. We never did it when we moved in, because I needed a sanctuary while living through the rest of the renovation with toddlers. Plus none of the other floors needed sanding, so we passed.
I am not a perfectionist and while others may have thought the floor's condition was something they could not live with, I have mostly ignored the messy spots.
Well, for whatever reason this weekend, they became glaringly clear to me and I actually considered painting the floor for a split second before I thought...ah, that's it! That is the one thing I would never do to a house.
Now, I love the look. ADORE it to be honest, but most don't, and while for the new owners sanding and staining are going to be necessary anyway, the paint will get in between boards and be very difficult to remove. The damage from stripping and sanding to fully remove several layers of paint may be so extensive, it could necessitate the entire floor being replaced and to me, that crosses the line.
We're not talking about a few gallons of paint and primer to cover a red wall or swapping out bisque appliances for stainless.
Remedying this would be a huge job. So nope. I pass.
I would never paint an interior wood floor. Wood floors are a huge asset, to both buyers and the bank.
And you don't mess with the bank.
This thinking led me to contemplate my other "nevers" and I came up with only two more. They may seem like common sense, but I have seen both of these things done many times over, in my own neighborhood, on home shows and websites and I think they are always a huge mistake.
One is removing a bathroom. Yup, people do it all the time. They take two small back to back baths and combine them into one large master or a larger Jack and Jill style for the kids. Once you remove a bathroom you automatically lower the value of the house and that's not something I'm willing to gamble with.
The other, number three, is removing a bedroom. Again, I have seen it happen over and over. People turn them into dining rooms or dens, combine two rooms to make a large master or a walk in closet. I understand, you want to live in the house and enjoy it your way and obviously, I say, go for it.
But not this way.
Decorate the spaces as such, remove the doors, temporarily at least, but leave the walls, the windows and the chance to put it all back together when moving day comes along.
When we were ready to sell our first home, we had it appraised. The number was too low for us to move, so we decided to renovate and make room for baby. We added to the front of the house, turning the old kitchen, which had a walk in pantry, into a third bedroom with a closet. Our tiny investment changed our home from a two bedroom to a three and literally doubled the appraisal price of our home the day the construction was complete.
It did not appreciate over time, the few square feet added didn't matter much, it was simply the addition of the third bedroom. The comps on a three bedroom were just higher.
This principle obviously works in reverse.
What a buyer choses to pay or make an offer on based on decor and amenity details is totally different than what a bank decides your home is worth.
That's my "never" line in the sand.
Although keep in mind my never say never rule.
It also works in reverse.
Have you seen stenciled wood floors?
Boy, they're pretty...
What's on your never, ever list?
Sign up for email and follow the fun.
Tips, tricks, crafts and giggles delivered straight to you!
Sharing with Between Naps On The Porch