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7 Projects that improve your home’s resale value

A good rule of thumb is to focus on aesthetics when it comes to integrating more of your personal tastes, because these can be easily changed with a coat of paint or minor work. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t make other, more significant changes to enhance your home.

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Photo courtesy of Mitsubishi Electric Cooling & Heating

Even if you have no immediate plans for leaving your home, it’s a good idea to approach renovations with resale value in mind. Upgrades that are likely to appeal to future buyers protect your investment while also improving your enjoyment of the home.

One key to a successful renovation is figuring out how to personalize the space without making it so customized that it’s not attractive to other potential owners. For example, eliminating a bedroom to create a giant walk-in closet may help achieve your dreams, but losing that bedroom can be a major hit to your home’s value.

A good rule of thumb is to focus on aesthetics when it comes to integrating more of your personal tastes, because these can be easily changed with a coat of paint or minor work. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t make other, more significant changes to enhance your home.

These renovation ideas – which include both cosmetic touch-ups and more labor-intensive suggestions – can help boost your home’s value.

Open space
Older homes were often designed with a boxy, formal layout that is less conducive to most modern families’ needs. Today’s open floor plans offer functionality for everything from keeping an eye on the kids while making dinner to entertaining guests. This type of floor plan can also make small rooms feel larger and invite more light into darker parts of the house.

The most cost-effective way to create an open space is to remove non-load-bearing walls (load bearing walls help support the roof; while they can be removed there’s typically quite a bit more time, labor and expense involved). Removing a wall may not be that complicated unless you encounter plumbing or HVAC ductwork that needs to be relocated. You’ll likely have some electrical outlets to move, and both the floor and ceiling will need attention to remove lingering signs of the former wall.

Color change
Although paint is one of the easiest ways to personalize your home, it’s also one of the least expensive, simplest ways to improve its value and appearance. A fresh coat of paint, inside or out, can create an appealing illusion of newness no matter the age of your home. For maximum resale value, stick to neutral tones so future buyers can focus on envisioning the place as their own, without the distraction of your own vibrant choices. If you don’t like the thought of boring beige, consider adding accent walls for pops of color that can be easily changed down the road.

Climate comfort
Not every aspect of home improvement is visible at first glance like a fresh coat of paint; some value-boosting upgrades are more behind the scenes. One example is climate management. If you renovate a space that needs better climate control, or if you add a new room where extending the existing ductwork is impractical, a split-ductless HVAC system may be the perfect solution. The ductless design saves HVAC contractors time during installation, therefore saving homeowners money.

Adjustable lighting
A room’s ambiance can be completely transformed with lighting. For multi-purpose rooms, an option like dimmer switches lets you customize the lighting to fit the use, which can vary throughout the day. A well-lit living room is essential for a large gathering or a small group gathered for game night. That same space can be equally inviting for an intimate conversation or a casual movie night with the lights turned down low. One of the best parts is minimal experience is needed to swap out standard switches for the more versatile dimmers. Plus, in today’s technology-driven world, there’s an app for seemingly everything – including lighting. Homeowners can control the ambiance from their phones by installing smart lightbulbs and lighting strips.

Grunge-free garage
Even though a garage’s functionality is the top concern for most buyers, a dingy, unkempt space can be a real turn-off. One way to instantly brighten and refresh the space is an epoxy coating on the floor. Applying the coating is relatively easy and once dry it helps prevent unsightly stains and damage in the future. Combine that with a thorough sweeping, wiping down walls and other surfaces, and organizing the clutter to create a more inviting space you can utilize to the fullest.

Understated elegance 
Features like crown molding and other wood accents such as chair rails are elegant upgrades that can elevate a home’s value with a relatively modest investment. An office or dining room is the perfect place to introduce these design elements to add a bit of formality to the space. You can also find crown molding in spaces like the living room, with the molding coordinating with built-in shelving flanking a fireplace. While getting the angles and fit just right is hardly a beginner’s endeavor, it’s a project that can pay dividends in the long run.

Better bathrooms
Many homeowners approach a bathroom upgrade with big projects in mind, like swapping out the vanity, replacing the tub or installing tile flooring. However, it’s possible to make a noticeable impact with much smaller changes. Simply updating bathroom fixtures and fittings such as shower heads, faucets, towel racks and lighting can transform the space with minimal effort and far less work and expense than a large-scale renovation.

Learn more at mitsubishicomfort.com.

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Home Care

Top 3 ways to check for hidden leaks

Uncommon and hidden leaks are the ones that tend to sneak up on homeowners and wreak a lot of havoc.

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Photo by Dan Smedley from Unsplash.com

Four Seasons Plumbing, a family-owned and -operated plumbing company serving the Asheville and Hendersonville areas, understands the toll that slow leaks and difficult-to-spot plumbing issues can take on a home. This summer, the company is offering homeowners tips to identify leaks early and take action before they result in costly damage.

“Uncommon and hidden leaks are the ones that tend to sneak up on homeowners and wreak a lot of havoc,” said Max Rose, owner of Four Seasons Plumbing. “It often takes noticing a water bill that’s higher than usual or finding a visible puddle on the floor to begin asking questions, and there could already be a lot of damage by that point.”

Max and the team at Four Seasons offer these tricks to help identify potential water leaks:

  • Check your water meter: Start by turning off all appliances in the house dependent on water, such as faucets, dishwashers, washing machines, etc. After waiting for an hour, monitor any changes to the meter. If the meter continues to change, you may have a leak in your system that could require the attention of a licensed, insured professional.
  • Add food coloring to your toilet tank: Toilets account for a considerable amount of water usage in the home. By adding food coloring to your toilet tank, you can monitor the bowl to see if there is any seepage from the tank in-between flushes. A leaking toilet can run unnoticed, and it can significantly impact a water bill with time.
  • Look for discoloration on ceilings and walls: By keeping an eye out for any browning or discoloration on ceilings and walls, you can be proactive in identifying leaks before they become detrimental.

By intentionally setting aside some time to practice these few simple steps, homeowners can save themselves thousands of dollars in repairs in the long run. Leaks can go unnoticed for weeks, months, or even years, resulting in costly damage to a home’s structure.

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Home Care

Add storage and seating to your patio

According to landscape designer, Doug Scott, storage is something a lot of people forget about when designing an outdoor living space.

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Photo by Sonnie Hiles from Unsplash.com

Whether you’re grilling, gardening or simply lounging in the backyard, it’s important to have the tools, supplies and equipment you need close at hand. Unfortunately, finding a convenient place to store everything is a challenge many homeowners face.

According to landscape designer, Doug Scott, storage is something a lot of people forget about when designing an outdoor living space.

“Whether it’s gardening tools and supplies, outdoor furniture cushions, or a random collection of toys, almost everything we do outdoors comes with stuff,” Scott said. “And it’s not always convenient to go back inside and get those things.”

Scott has partnered with Exmark on a new Done-In-A-Weekend Projects video that shows homeowners how to build a dual-purpose outdoor storage bench that offers convenient on-patio storage. It also provides comfortable outdoor seating for family and guests.

“It’s really the best for both form and function,” Scott said.

While it’s possible to build the exterior of the outdoor storage bench from several wood options, Scott said untreated cedar is a good choice, for several reasons. It’s attractive and is naturally rot-resistant, so staining or painting the storage bench is an option, not a requirement.

The interior of the storage box is built from a combination of plywood, pine boards and decking board, secured with a combination of wood screws, wood glue and exterior construction adhesive.

Scott said the outdoor storage bench is a project that most folks can complete in one to two days, but he recommends enlisting the help of a friend or family member, which can cut the project time in half.

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Home Care

Modern kitchen and bath upgrades

Modernizing your spaces isn’t just about the aesthetic, although that is a major advantage, especially when it comes to resale value. Updating your kitchen and bath is also an opportunity to introduce new technology and enhancements that improve the function of these high-traffic rooms.

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Upgrades happen for all kinds of reasons, but one of the most common purposes of a home renovation is to make essential spaces like kitchens and bathrooms more modern.

Modernizing your spaces isn’t just about the aesthetic, although that is a major advantage, especially when it comes to resale value. Updating your kitchen and bath is also an opportunity to introduce new technology and enhancements that improve the function of these high-traffic rooms.

Modern styles simplify everyday living and can make contemporary entertaining more enjoyable. The sleek lines of modern design lend themselves to a clean look, which is supported by hidden features that make organization easier.

Smart Technology

Although the idea of a connected home isn’t new, technology is steadily improving. This means smart features are now often more affordable, easily integrated into the rest of your home and available to help manage a wider range of household items.

In the kitchen, you can add smart technology in numerous ways, from appliances and climate control to lighting and window treatments. For example, touch-to-open and push-to-open doors and drawers create a sleek, modern design while opening and closing with either a push or touch of a button for convenience.

Similar diversity is available in the bathroom, where you can incorporate connected health and fitness monitors, touchless toilets, mirrors that double as information centers, towel warmers and even showers that automatically adjust to your preferred temperature.

Paint

Changing the colors in a space is one of the most effective ways to transform the decor, but the walls aren’t the only place where paint can make a big impact, especially in rooms like the kitchen or bathroom, where the cabinetry can make a bold statement.

Black is a hallmark of modern design and installing cabinetry with a black finish can instantly upgrade a room. To create visual interest, consider incorporating accent cabinets in a coordinating finish. For example, you could pair Wellborn Cabinet’s Midtown wall cabinets finished in Matte Ebony with upper center cabinets finished in Putty Oak. An island in Bel-Air can incorporate both dark and light tones for a cohesive look.

Decorative Range Hoods

An exposed range hood is a trendy look that can add sophistication to your kitchen. Treating this functional element as a statement piece gives you another place to showcase your style and create a sleek and modern look. If your hood is covered, consider making the cabinet door a focal point with a material such as back-painted glass.

Multi-Purpose Sinks

While your sink has some obvious functions, you can upgrade the space for even more practical use. Some of the latest sink design innovations include built-in features such as cutting boards, colanders, bowls, drying racks and compost areas. In addition, motion activated wastebaskets with separate compost or recycling containers provide hands-free access to reduce unwanted messes.

Touchless Faucets

Public restrooms aren’t the only places you can benefit from a touchless faucet. At home, the feature may come in handy when your hands are full or filthy. An automatic water flow is convenient and can help keep germs and grime under control. For the most on-trend, modern look, coordinate your faucets with other bathroom elements finished in gold hues, such as a laminate veneer vanity in a high-gloss gold finish.

Cabinetry

Collectively, cabinets are the biggest component of most kitchens. Since kitchens tend to be the hub of the home, it’s important to maintain a homey feel while adding the luxury of modern features. Using warm colors, gold-toned hardware and sleek door styles can deliver a glamorous yet welcoming design.

For example, Wellborn Cabinet’s Aspire Full Access Frameless line features flat moulding and flush lines to create a thoughtfully integrated flow throughout the kitchen. A Morristown door in the Smokey Walnut finish and Serenity metal doors in Sand Gloss Glass marry heirloom quality and contemporary finishes for a beautiful and functional space.

Free-Standing Tubs

A luxurious soaking tub is a top demand for many homeowners, and trends are moving toward free-standing options that create a focal point in an oasis-like bathroom. You may be envisioning an old-fashioned claw-foot style, but there are numerous modern takes on the traditional version that can fit seamlessly into your modern design scheme.

Wood-Look Flooring

Natural wood floors were once the gold standard, but thanks to improvements in the quality and appearance of laminate and vinyl products, you can find alternative flooring in even high-end homes. Laminate and vinyl planks give the same look as wood (or stone, if you prefer) to complement a modern aesthetic, usually at a lower price point and with greater durability over time.

Find more ideas to modernize your living space at wellborn.com.

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