September is all about change. It’s back to school time for families, and the beginning of a new season full of changing colours and steadily dropping temperatures. Before you know it, the holiday season will be here – first Thanksgiving, then Christmas and other winter holidays.
Now, look around your house. Is there a project you’ve been putting off, or something you’d like to change before hosting your next big family gathering? If you’ve been thinking about renovating your home, now’s the time – let’s get you ready for the holidays!
Renovations and real estate often go hand-in-hand. Sometimes, homeowners decide to renovate a property in order to sell at the best possible price. Other times, they buy a fixer-upper and want to turn it into their dream home (or at least get rid of that old wood paneling in the basement!).
I’ve been renovating homes for a long time, but in more recent years, I decided to take on a new role as a licensed realtor. This wasn’t to replace my renovation business – more so, it’s to enhance my full service offering. It’s been a great experience, and I can’t wait to share it with more clients.
The benefits of working with a realtor who is also a contractor
Realtors will often give an opinion on what can be done with a house – removing walls, upgrading the kitchen, adding a bathroom, etc. This is great, but when your realtor is actually an active contractor, it’s a whole new ball game. I can tell you what’s possible and also what it should cost and how long it should take to complete. I’ll identify load-bearing walls and discuss how they can impact your design plan. I’m able to offer suggestions you may not have thought of, explain how renovations impact the value of a home and also offer budget-friendly solutions. I’m not just trying to sell you a house – when I work as a realtor, I strive to find the best solution for your family, and that includes discussing and pricing out potential renovations.
When you invite someone into your home to complete a renovation project, there’s a lot of trust involved. My team and I understand this, and we take our position very seriously. This isn’t just about the quality of our work and craftsmanship – that’s important, but it’s only one element involved in hiring a contractor. There also needs to be a good working relationship that’s based on transparency, communication and respect. Homeowners need to know what’s happening at all times and understand their options. They should also feel comfortable in their homes, no matter what stage a reno is in.
While every homeowner’s aesthetic is personal and unique, there are a few design trends that are arguably better left in the past. (Remember when sponge paint was a thing? The 90s were a wild time for interior design!)
One thing people often call me about is popcorn ceilings. While they aren’t the worst thing you could have in your home, they’re something many families want to get rid of in favour of a smooth, clean ceiling. It’s not uncommon to remove a popcorn ceiling during a major renovation, but oftentimes, people want to know what’s involved in doing it as a stand-alone project. The good news is that it’s usually much less complicated than people expect – and often, more affordable.
Many of our clients come to us with a clear vision for their kitchen renovation. One look that’s incredibly popular right now? White, bright and full of beautiful marble – and we’re definitely on board with making this happen. Not only is it on trend at the moment, it’s a classic, timeless look that you’re unlikely to regret in the years to come. That said, my team and I often have some suggestions when it comes to materials – namely, how to get this look at a great price and with durable, lasting results.
The look you want
Common requests for this style involve carrara marble and calacatta tile – natural stone options that are largely white with lovely grey veining. There’s nothing wrong with using either of these materials – both are high quality and visually appealing. However, there are additional options that should be explored before making a final decision. I’ll help talk you through this part of the process – what do you want visually, and what does your family need in terms of function? Do you have young children? How much time do you have to clean and maintain your countertops, and what else do we need to know before moving ahead? Like all design decisions, it’s not a one-size-fits-all scenario. Custom is everything, so this type of conversation is where we get started.