More Homeowners Are Staying Put, Renovating in 2014, Says New Realtor.com Report

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Sardone Construction has many projects in the pipeline, most of which include homes that are being renovated to be more livable for modern households. (Photo: Sardone Construction)

With more than two thirds of homeowners planning home renovations in the next 6 months, it’s no wonder that contractors and builders are busier than a Realtor’s phone come springtime.

But why are more homeowners planning to renovate? According to a survey from Realtor.com and Move Inc., besides improving a home’s function and aesthetic (32 percent) and preparing a home for the market (22 percent), homeowners also planned to take a sledgehammer to a recently purchased home that needs some work (19 percent) as well as make key renovations to increase a home’s value and build equity (11 percent).

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Budgets for most renovation projects planned before year’s end range from $2,000 to $5,000, with 18 percent of homeowners planning projects totaling between $10,000 and $20,000. Most projects involve the key selling areas of a home: kitchens, bathrooms, and outdoor spaces.

“With 32 percent of consumers planning to spend money on improving the look and feel of their homes, home buyers should think about purchasing homes that require renovations,” said Barbara O’Connor, Move’s chief marketing officer. “By considering these kinds of homes, buyers open themselves up to more affordable options and the ability to renovate their homes to fit their specific needs and tastes.”

Larry Paschall and Stephan Sardone go over plans for Paschall's Casa Linda Forest home. (Photo: Larry Paschall, AIA, HPD Architecture)

Larry Paschall and Stephan Sardone go over plans for Paschall’s Casa Linda Forest home. (Photo: Larry Paschall, AIA, HPD Architecture)

We asked contractor Stephan Sardone of Sardone Construction about the trends he’s noticing in the projects his design/build firm has engaged. Sardone, who primarily works in East and North Dallas as well as the Park Cities, says that more homeowners are renovating to make the most of their home’s existing footprint, making their space work better for everyday living.

“They really just want to come in and make the home to their taste,” Sardone said, noting that kitchen areas and living areas are emphasized as one great space, and more buyers are looking to make their home energy efficient. That may mean adding foam insulation, putting in tankless water heaters, or adding LED lighting, Sardone added.

“They want increased functionality and livability,” Sardone said. Design touches that have become popular include museum finish on the walls, larger slabs of stone, bigger tiles, and open floorplans. A great example of this is Sardone’s latest project, a midcentury remodel on Stanwood Drive in Casa Linda Forest, owned by Larry Paschall, AIA, of HPD Architecture. This home is getting an amazing facelift, with an open kitchen and living area, tons of new windows, and a standing-seam metal roof.

Sardone has plenty of experience converting 1950s homes into modern spaces. He did an amazing job transforming the L Streets showhome at 10229 Linkwood with a soaring ceiling, open living and kitchen, and gorgeous updates in the master suite. These kinds of updates are the ones that clue us in that homeowners are making the most of the home they’re in rather than upgrading or building. Why give up that low mortgage interest rate? Renovating just makes more sense.

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