The renovation craze has taken Canadian homeowners by the throat and wrung many millions of dollars out of their bank accounts in recent years. Yet how many homeowners are profiting from this “investment” in their primary residences?
And since money is cheap, thanks to record-low interest rates, it has never been easier for Canadians to borrow to get that new breakfast-nook addition or backyard patio. But mostly, it’s driven by the premise that thousands spent on new floors and fixtures is an “investment,” as opposed to mere conspicuous consumption. A 2013 survey by the popular home-remodelling website Houzz found that 60 per cent of Canadians cited “increasing value” as the key motivation to renovate…
The dark side of Canada’s renovation boom, July 28, 2014, Macleans.ca
I don’t know about the real estate cray-cray in Toronto and Vancouver, but here in Lethbridge, no one is getting wealthy by ripping apart their kitchen or knocking down walls. Unless you’re a general contractor who knows a LOT about construction AND has an inside track on undervalued homes … then you MIGHT make some money. But now we’re not talking about a primary residence anymore, are we?
Homeowners need only worry about ONE type of reno project when trying to optimize market value:
Read that again but say it out loud so it really sinks in: H o m e m a i n t e n a n c e. Home maintenance matters. Home maintenance is my friend. I’m a home maintenance rock star.
And if you sorta-kinda didn’t do much maintenance over the last few (10?) years, get a home inspection. Better still, get a home inspection no matter what condition you believe your house to be in… or how much maintenance you (think you) have done.
It’s a tough thing for homeowner to square with, but every single home has potential problems. Problems that will crash a deal faster than you can say, “But I didn’t know the roof was shot!”
Watch the video below to learn why renovating your primary residence should be done with caution, and why inspecting and repairing the roof should come first.