How to Protect Your Investment with a Quality Remodel

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By: Rachael Boyer

Oct 31, 2022

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Take a look at any news source these days, and it is safe to say that the reporting on the current economy is not exactly painting a rosy picture.

From inflation woes to housing market fluctuations to climbing interest rates - it is easy to get sucked in to a spiral of negativity that seeps into every financial decision you are looking to make. Things that should be exciting become stressful back-and-forth decisions as you try to determine the best financial moves to make in the midst of so much economic uncertainty. A prime example of this indecision is making improvements to your home. It can be easy to slip into the mindset of things being "good enough" and "let's just wait until the economy improves to make changes at home".

But the economy is of course a fluid thing - and depending on the health of the economy to improve you and your family's life at home can be a stressful game of unknowns. Because while things can always get better, they can also get worse! Rather than crossing your fingers and waiting on the economy to meet your needs, we want to help you tackle your home projects by meeting the economy where it is at and making appropriate decisions to better your investment in your home no matter the economic climate.

You don’t need to delay your home projects during an economic downturn, you just need to tackle those projects with an intelligent strategy.

You can absolutely remodel your home and better your investment via a quality project - with quality being the key word in that sentence. Using a two-pronged approach when setting up these projects is key - on the one hand doing what is best for you and your family while simultaneously making changes that increase your home's value.

Who you trust to remodel your home is key to protecting your investment and ending up with a quality result that increases that home value. A contractor who advises you on what choices will better your financial position and create a positive ROI is more important than ever when dealing with overall economic uncertainty.

What is ROI?

ROI = Return On Investment and is critical to a successful remodel project. Ask yourself two questions: What will my remodel do for my family's day to day life? AND What will my remodel do for my home’s value? It is unfortunately very easy to find horror stories about remodeling projects that have caused a negative return on investment - leading to stress and panic as more money is required to fix the mistakes. DIY projects and shoddy contractors are equally to blame in these scenarios. A great example is an attempt to paint cabinetry. It seems like a simply project with lots of YouTube videos that will make you feel like a professional, but the reality is this type of project requires immense skill and training to be done correctly and in a way that will actually stand up to daily wear and tear. Streaky cabinets with brush marks and chips will never be in style, and will certainly never increase your home's value. Cut corners on a finished basement will also come back to haunt you during a home inspection when trying to sell your home in the future.

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Your remodeling contractor should understand - and even advise - how to improve ROI. This should be top of mind for your entire remodel team, as they can help guide you to design and implementation decisions that both meet your family's needs and improve the overall value of your home. It is indeed possible to balance the two, and a skilled contractor will be able to easily provide the quality result you need to love your home from a sentimental and financial standpoint. You may love the idea of purple cabinets, but is that going to benefit your ROI? Choosing ultra-trendy, flash-in-the-pan design choices can negatively impact your home’s value. A contractor and their design team can use those trendy elements in your decor and interchangeable elements vs. recommending incorporating those things into something permanent like your backsplash or your wall treatments.
Your home can still very much be your own while maintaining a level of universality that will benefit you should you decide to refinance or sell.

What Does Quality Actually Mean?

Quality is such a marketing buzzword - with everyone from ride share drivers to sock makers promising a quality experience or product. There are a number of key elements to look for when determining if a contractor can truly deliver a quality result or if they are just blowing marketing hot air.

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1. Looking good does not necessarily equal quality.

Photographers can act like magicians - conjuring up photos that make something look vastly better than what it actually is in real life. From editing programs to forgiving angles, a company's portfolio on their website cannot be the sole determining factor in choosing a contractor to trust your home to. Is there a showroom you can visit that allows you to see their cabinetry, feel a concrete coating beneath your feet, and get up close and personal with their craftsmanship? And absent of that, can you visit a project they've completed to get an in-person feel for what you're signing up for? Examine the material choices. Ask who the team members are. Understand what sets them apart.

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2. Quality experience AND Quality Result

Even if the end result of your project has lasting quality, if your journey there was a roller coaster ride of anxiety - was it really worth it? One of the clients we worked with had built their own home with a contractor - and the end result was beautiful! But because the process was a literal nightmare of empty timeline promises, unforeseen delays, tradespeople inexplicably walking off the job mid-project, and massive price jumps that popped up out of nowhere - it wasn't possible to actually enjoy the home. They sold after just a year and a half because all that home represented was a horrible experience. It is therefore imperative that the contractor you choose can demonstrate up front how they will care for you and guide you through the process - providing quality at every possible level.

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3. It's okay to want a guarantee

Peace of mind is key to enjoying your project process. That's why expecting a contractor to guarantee their work is not a big ask - it's a necessity. Find out what warranties are offered for everything from the appliances installed to the coatings on the walls, and know that a contractor that doesn't believe in the quality of their work will never guarantee a thing.

Understand what you’re getting before the project starts

One of the best ways to reduce stress throughout a remodel, and provide reassurance from day one, is to truly understand the full scope of your project. Being told “We’ll switch our your countertops” is not an accurate representation of what’s occurring at this phase - or what that costs. This one element involves a whole series of steps:

  • Who will demo the existing countertop?
  • Who will install the new one?
  • Who will handle the electrical modifications?
  • Who will handle the plumbing modifications?
  • Who is ensuring the countertops are correctly cut for your new sink?
  • Who is scheduling the countertop demo and install to correctly fit into the flow of your remodel project?

As you can see, there are a multitude of moving parts involved with just one element of your remodel - and seeing how the contractor plans to handle each piece from the start will help you feel confident in both the quality of your project and creating a positive Return On Investment.

Our team at The Authority Companies acknowledges the stressors brought on by a messy economic climate - and understands the initial inclination to delay home improvement projects as a result.

But with over 25 years in the business, we have seen the strength of the overall climate wax and wane, and have guided homeowners through a myriad of projects no matter where the economy stood. We understand what delivering quality truly means, and will always advise on creating a positive Return on Investment for you and your home.

Let's start the conversation around bettering your home for your family and your finances today. Reach out to one of our remodeling experts via this link or by calling 701-936-5610.

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