This Year’s Popular Remodeling Choices

By HomeAdvisor

Updated September 22, 2017

Kitchen remodel

There are so many cool things that people can do to their homes it’s no wonder that the popular remodels change from year to year. For a long while everyone wanted a bar. Then vinyl siding, hardwood floors, and now granite. New changes are always on the horizon, but if you want a good return on remodeling investments, going with what’s “hot” might not be a good idea. This year (and pretty much every year before and after), the best remodels are likely to focus on upgrades that will improve appearance or function now and continue to be attractive additions in the future, too.

Returns on Remodeling Investments Come in Different Packages

Before you get too excited about the new trends and how badly you want them, first you need to consider what you really want from your remodel. Returns are great things to think about if you plan on selling, but if your home won’t be “flipped” any time soon, you’ll probably be best served by a remodel you really want rather than one designed to increase property value or impress the neighbors.

That being said, the return on investment remodeling is the bottom line for anyone looking to sell quickly and make a profit. Every one who plans on selling should be aware of the trends that are popular across the country, and what the likely return on remodeling costs is for particular projects.

Staying Power Equates to Better Returns on Remodeling Costs

The biggest returns on remodeling costs are more likely to come for projects with staying power. Identifying the staying power of a particular project, however, is not always easy to do. If you look at the popularity of granite counters, it would be easy to conclude that these were more than just a fad. However, as there are many other counters that offer benefits that are very similar to those of granite, this material may be replaced by something else of similar performance in the future. On the other hand, solar panel installation has also gained popularity at an alarming rate over the past 5 years. Since there are no other materials that do what solar panels do, and this installation ultimately ends up saving money and energy down the road, there’s a good chance that this addition is one that will be a bonus for quite a while. Wondering how much solar panels cost? Review our True Cost Guide for more.

Choose Classics to Boost Return on Remodeling Investments

Function never goes out of style, and the materials that have been found to function well for generations are rarely a bad decision. The return on remodeling costs is often less impressive if the material used in that remodel goes out of style; to boost your cost recovery, high quality materials that have been around for ages are often the best choice. It is unlikely that any homeowner will ever scoff at a genuine brick or stone wood burning fireplace; since quality hardwood flooring hasn’t gone out of style in the past several centuries, the chance of it becoming undesirable in our lifetime is slim. While there are certainly exceptions caused by innovation making a particular home component obsolete (before plumbing, out-houses had some pretty good staying power), such situations generally take a generation or two to be upheld by the population at large.

The Return on Remodeling Costs Depends on Moods and Location

Of the many statistics published every year on particular remodeling projects, none will describe every situation. For every project, the return on remodeling costs is highly dependent on the project’s geographic location, the neighborhood it is done in, and the collective attitudes of the area, too. In the mid-1970’s, a homeowner in the Hollywood Hills might conceivably get a great return on remodeling costs by installing a colored floor that lit up or converting a guest room to a tiger cage. In early-1990’s Seattle, you could probably recover more than your costs by installing a basic recording studio in the garage. To understand what is getting returns in your neck of the woods this year, one of the best things you can do is simply talk to a realtor. In most cases, these professionals are well aware of what’s hot now, what has been hot (and will continue to be hot) for decades in your neighborhood, and what features are best ignored.

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