Sunday, November 29, 2009

Remodeling Versus Selling Your Home, Which is Best?

Should you sell your home, or make do with what you have? Should you consider making a move to a larger place, or contract to have an addition built to your present home? Such decisions are not simple to make, and will require time to consider. Money, time, and the present real estate market will all play roles in whether or not you decide to put your home up for sale, due to age or size. However, one should also note the option of remodeling your present home instead of finding a new one.

Is it better to remodel your present home than try to find a new one? There is no cut and dry answer to that. If it is not imperative to leave your area, but are contemplating a sale to make room for a growing family, perhaps a simple home renovation should be considered as well. Here are just a few reasons why remodeling your current home may be a better investment:

Remodeling may better for your budget. Think about what is involved in selling a home and buying another one. You have to have your home appraised for a good selling price, and maybe you'll hire a Realtor to help with prospective buyers. Meanwhile, you have to look around for a house comparable or cheaper in price than what you are asking. Your house may sell quickly or it may linger, depending on the market. If you are able to sell, though, it may not be as easy to find a house you want. Depending on where you live, a new mortgage may lead you to tighten your belt for a while until you are able to get payments under control.

When you remodel your current home, however, the budget differs and may work to your advantage. Most times, it does not cost as much to renovate a home than buying a new one outright, and most contractors and construction companies offer different ways to finance a home improvement project.

With remodeling, you have control over what you want. So the bathrooms and the kitchen in your present home are outdated. Buying into a new home may give you newer appliances and fixtures, yet you may not immediately find what you want in a new living place. When you consider renovating what you have, however, you are in control of the decor, and not subject to what you are offered elsewhere. Contractors may offer suggestions with regards to fixtures and cabinets, but ultimately when you remodeling you have more freedom in designing the home of your dreams.

Remodeling can improve the value of your home. If you decide not to sell immediately, you can still consider a renovation job and apply that work to a future sale. Updated fixtures, floors, and cabinets are definitely more attractive to a prospective buyer who will not need to hire help to renovate once the papers are signed. Plus, the more improvements are made, the better the asking price.

Whether you decide to sell or renovate, make sure you take all options into consideration. Your home is your place for comfort, and a renovation job can make it more so.

Kathryn Lively is a freelance writer specializing in articles on Virginia Beach home repair and Virginia Beach window replacement.

Friday, November 27, 2009

What is Barrier-Free Remodeling?

If you have spent a good amount of time searching the Internet or the Yellow Pages for a contractor, you may have noticed a few ads proudly proclaiming the company's ability to do "barrier free remodeling" on request. At first glance, this term might not mean anything significant, but to thousands of people seeking to improve the quality of their home life, such a contractor can be a blessing.

"Barrier Free Remodeling" refers to home improvements and renovations designed for handicap accessibility. Homeowners confined to wheelchairs or walkers, or who need assistance with home appliances will know that barrier free structures are helpful and allow them to move through a space without obstacles. Examples of barrier free remodeling may include the following:
  • Wider doorways to accommodate wheelchairs
  • Handles affixed to bathroom and bedroom walls to assist in moving from bed to shower to bath and back
  • Cabinets placed at specific heights to allow for easier access by people in wheelchairs
  • Other special fixtures like raised toilet seats, shower benches, or wheelchair ramps

Finding a Barrier Free Contractor
Take note that not every contractor you interview for a special project may specialize in barrier free remodeling. It is important to make sure, if you are looking to renovate your home to accommodate handicap access, that the contractor is aware of what is needed. Any such improvements made to a home must adhere to guidelines set by the American Disabilities Act, so as you interview contractors find out if they are knowledgeable about what is required. It is also a good idea to consult with other homeowners who have had similar work done to learn more about whom you should contact for your job. Take the time to research eligible contractors before making a decision, as this is definitely a job that should only be done once, and done correctly.

Kathryn Lively is a freelance writer specializing in articles on Virginia Beach home remodeling and Virginia Beach home repair.