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Editorial


Front Page - Friday, October 9, 2020

Remodeling can bring joy, higher value




In this low-inventory market, some homebuyers are making changes to their existing home instead of going through the competitive search for their next home. In addition to enjoying your current digs more, remodeling also brings the long-term benefit of increasing your home’s value.

The National Association of Realtors just released its 2019 Remodeling Impact Report, which highlights the projects that most appeal to homebuyers.

This report was conducted pre-COVID in July 2019. Many people began to work remotely in response to COVID, but that should only increase the importance of these remodeling projects.

The report states Americans spend $400 billion annually on remodeling their homes. Nationally, 35% of homeowners would rather move to another home than remodel their current one, while 55% of owners in suburban areas and 52% of owners in urban areas say they would be willing to remodel their home. This jumps to 70% for owners in rural areas.

It’s worth noting that in the current housing market, many Realtors (myself included) are seeing multiple offers on listed homes. This scenario is not unique to Chattanooga, and there’s no guarantee that buyers will land their first, second or even third choice.

With this in mind, an increasing number of consumers are spending money to make their existing property into the home that will have all the features they’re looking for in a new house.

Sure, projects can be measured in cost, but Realtors know there are certain feelings money can’t quite measure. To help gauge those intangibles, NAR calculated a Joy Score for each remodeling project based on the happiness homeowners reported with their renovations.

So, what do the numbers say?

Interior projects with a Joy Score of 10 were a complete kitchen remodel, a closet renovation, a full interior paint job, an individual room paint job, a kitchen upgrade and converting a basement to a living area.

Exterior projects with the highest Joy Scores were a new fiberglass or steel front door, new vinyl or wood windows, and new roofing.

Taking on these projects is often worth the time and investment. When they see their completed project, 74% of owners say they have a greater desire to be in their home, 65% say they experience increased enjoyment in their home, 58% say they feel happy, and 38% say they feel satisfied, with a typical Joy Score of 9.6.

Moreover, 77% of respondents feel a major sense of accomplishment when they think of their completed project.

Are you wondering whether to tackle the work yourself or contract it out? Some remodel projects can be done on your own with a little bit of elbow grease.

According to the NAR’s report, 36% of the owners did the project themselves, 35% hired a professional for all of the work, and 14% hired the labor but purchased the materials. Weigh your options and resources to get the most bang for your buck.

Note that in light of COVID-19, we’re seeing slowness in obtaining supplies and some appliances. In some cases, the cost for certain materials are increasing, as the pandemic has slowed production in the supply chain.

Renovations big and small can increase value. It also makes the property your own. Consulting a Realtor might be a good place to get direction. We’re here for our clients and community. That’s Who We R.

Greater Chattanooga Realtors is The Voice of Real Estate in Greater Chattanooga. A regional organization with more than 2,000 members, Greater Chattanooga Realtors is one of 300 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors. Greater Chattanooga Realtors services Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee and Catoosa, Dade and Walker counties in northwest Georgia. For more information, visit www.gcar.net or call 423 698-8001.