You’d love to have more closet space, but is turning that third bedroom into a shrine for your
shoes really the best investment? Make decisions
that add to rather than detract from your home’s
value. Lazarus recommends having at least one
bathtub in a household and an additional half-bath if you are
planning to sell in the future.
Create Your Space
How can you live through your remodel when you
are living in your remodel? Carve out a work-free
space for your family. Keeping a floor or section
of your home o;-limits to workers will allow you
to keep some semblance of home throughout the
process. Remember to move appliances like refrigerators to
places you can easily access, and keep items you use regularly,
like that co;eemaker, nearby.
How do you deal with the inevitable dust and
dirt that comes with a remodel? Focus on protection. Whether it’s your valuables, furniture
or lungs, being prepared will make for a happier home. Seal o; rooms, roll up antique rugs
and devise a waste removal plan that doesn’t send workers
through the gardens. Lazarus recommends using zippered
plastic sheets, which make it easier to access work areas
without jeopardizing the seal. And most important, know
your construction schedule well so you are prepared for
when the water or gas must be turned o; or when strong-smelling glues or finishes are to be used.
Communication Is Key
Remember, you are driving this process,
so be an active participant and communicate clearly with your contractor,
particularly if you are living off-site
during the remodel. Know there will be
plenty of last-minute decisions throughout that will require
quick answers to keep your project on track. Being available
will not only keep the project moving, but will ensure that the
work meets your expectations. And if you are living on site,
establish expectations with your contractor in the beginning,
including work hours, access to your home and areas such as
restrooms and storage of tools and materials. M
Looks Are Everything
Want to add more value to your home without emptying your
wallet? Focus on your home’s curb appeal — what can be seen from
the street. According to the National Association of Realtors, curb
appeal sells 49 percent of all homes, so if you are in the market to sell,
think about the first impression your home will make on prospective
buyers. Here are three ideas that will freshen up your home quickly.
FRONT DOOR Brighten up your entryway by upgrading your front door. From a
fresh coat of paint and updated hardware to a complete replacement, there are
options for all budgets. And if you want to try before you buy, Home Depot’s
Kathryn Gallagher recommends the store’s Augmented Reality app. “Using your
phone’s camera, you will be able to visually see how thousands of products look in
your living space, including a new front door on your home,” she says.
FRONT PORCH A front porch should be both warm and welcoming, so this is where
a few simple signature elements can add easy inexpensive flair. Try a lantern in
an unusual shape or unique finish or bright-colored pots near the door to set your
home apart. Update your planters frequently with seasonal flowers to keep your
front porch always looking fresh.
FRONT LAWN Creating an inviting front lawn goes way beyond raking up the leaves; it
needs to be neat and tidy to make your home beckon. Whether you go with drought-toler-
ant plants, hardscape or a lush green lawn, the overall look should be well-manicured and
full, with no bare spots or weeds to disrupt the feeling that your home is well cared for.