TEAM Metrowest
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Posted by TEAM Metrowest on 3/27/2019

Doing a home improvement or renovation is a great way to add value to your home while learning something new. If you decide to DIY, you can enlist the help of your family and learn together.

But, when youíre taking on a task youíve never done before, thereís a lot that can go wrong. You might go over budget, or the project might take significantly longer than expected. Sometimes we start jobs that we donít have the expertise (or permits) to finish and have to call in a professional sinking more time and money into what was supposed to be an inexpensive renovation.

To help you avoid some of these common pitfalls, weíve provided these tips for running a successful home improvement project so you can focus on your renovation and not on the headaches that come with it.

1. Know when to call the experts

Undertaking a do-it-yourself project can be fun and rewarding. However, some tasks are better left to the professionals. Plumbing and electrical mistakes, in particular, can be dangerous and costly if you get it wrong. You donít want to disregard the safety of you, your family, and your belongings just to save money on hiring a professional.

2. Call the best expert for the job

Call multiple professionals for a quote before accepting an offer.

If you received what seems a very low quote for a job, make sure to call other experts in the industry to see how much they would charge for the job. Getting an unusually low offer could be a sign that the contractor will rush the project or use cheap materials.

Alternatively, if you receive a quote that seems too high, the contractor may have a busy schedule or might not really want the job, so theyíve offered you a price they donít expect you to take.

Regardless of who you choose, see if you can find reviews and testimonials to make sure youíve selected a contractor who is professional and has good customer feedback.

3. Aim high with your budget

When homeowners take on a renovation, they tend to underestimate the costs. To avoid being shocked by going over budget, estimate what you think the total costs would be and then at another twenty percent. That twenty percent could account for damaged building materials, mistakes, or last-minute changes and customizations--all are frequent on DIY projects.

4. Donít work without a design or blueprint

Even for simple home improvement projects, itís best to start out with a plan. Having detailed measurements and drawings to refer to will help you avoid costly mistakes. Weíve all felt the temptation to ďeyeball itĒ when working on a project--taking the extra few minutes to measure and refer to your plan will save you time in the long run.

5. Relax and focus on the results

Home improvement projects can be a source of frustration for many families. If you arenít an expert, itís easy to get angry when things arenít going as you planned. If you find yourself frequently hitting a wall-literally or figuratively--step back from the project and refocus on the end goal, improving your home for years to come.




Categories: Home improvement   renovation   DIY  


Posted by TEAM Metrowest on 9/12/2018

Many buyers are searching for a home with an attached garage. It helps to keep cars out of the sun, rain, and snow. An attached garage allows you to walk directly from your vehicle into your home without worry. 


Garages used to be detached. These structures offered many benefits to homeowners that seem to be forgotten. As cars became more popular and larger, families began to own two cars at their properties. When this became common, so too di the attached garage.  


While an attached garage is seen as a luxury and often a necessity, the good points a detached garage have shouldnít be overlooked. 


Attached garages can be converted into living spaces. This affords you as a homeowner much more room without the need to move. Homeowners can then build a detached garage for storage or the placement of a vehicle. 


Other Advantages To Detached Garages


A detached garage adds character to a home. Many buyers complain of tired suburban architecture, where the garage often becomes somewhat of a focal point for the front of the home. Detached garages can be more pleasing to look at.


Youíll also have a bit more wiggle room as to how you design your home. If you build a detached garage, it can be placed at an angle on the property. The garage can also be hidden in the backyard, or designed to look like a smaller version of the larger house. A path can even be built through the yard to the garage to bring a design to the entire yard. 


Another advantage to a detached garage is that toxic fumes from your vehicle wonít get into the house. Homes with detached garages can often receive green points for environmentally friendly building practices. Thereís also less of a risk posed to you and your family for things like carbon monoxide poisoning. You canít leave a vehicle running very long in an attached garage without that risk.   


A detached garage also affords the possibility of adding living space above the garage. It can be a great play space for kids or a game room for adults. You can even build a home office in the upstairs portion of the garage. The area will indeed be quiet if placed strategically. If the attached garage is new construction, you can run wild with it. The design is up to you and the possibilities are truly endless. 


While many buyers search for a home with an attached garage, detached garages can have many pros and allow great flexibility to you as a homeowner.           




Categories: Buying a Home  


Posted by TEAM Metrowest on 3/7/2018

The bathroom can quickly become one of the most neglected rooms of the house. Sure, we need to clean it often. We certainly use it often enough! We probably never think to update the bathroom in small ways. Thereís many quick things that we can do in the room that allow us to refresh the room without a total overhaul. 


Add A New Mirror


Adding a new mirror not only will brighten the room, it could make a small bathroom appear larger. A new medicine chest with a mirror attached is also a great option that helps you to stay organized and keep medicines and other essentials hidden from plain sight. Adding lighting to a mirror is another bonus that will add some function and a new element to your room. Place a mirror strategically for a room that looks larger.    


Add Some Fresh Paint

A fresh coat of paint in a room can work wonders. You can update the color of the space and completely transform it by adding new matching shower curtains and accessories. 


Make Sure Your Cabinets Are Functional


Itís not practical to have storage in your bathroom that you canít use. If you have things stored in the bathroom, be sure that you can actually get to all of the items. If you need to install pull-out shelves or baskets for easier access, do so. If your bathroom looks nice, but isnít very easy for you to use or find anything, itís not working for you.


Update The Tile


While this sounds like quite a project, installing tile isnít too hard of a DIY. You can buy types of tile that basically are a no-brainer to install. With the right measurements, there wonít be a ton of cutting tile and filling in the cracks. The most difficult part of this project could actually be removing the old tile. 


Change The Light Fixture


Just this one simple change can actually make your bathroom look like a whole different room. Choose a light fixture that will have a dramatic effect on the room and match the desired style.


Replace The Countertop


Bathroom countertops donít get quite as much attention as kitchen countertops do. The truth is that changing the area of the bathroom countertop, along with anything else you choose to do, can really have an impact on the room. You donít need to find an expensive material. Just pick something that will go with the room and that you love. 


Refinish Cabinets


Any cabinets that you may have in your bathroom could be refinished to breathe life into the room. Itís fairly simple to refinish cabinets that arenít in tough shape. All youíll need is some sandpaper and fresh stain for the wood. If the style permits, you could even repaint your cabinets for a new appearance.





Posted by TEAM Metrowest on 1/24/2018

If youíre looking to increase the value of your home before you sell, there are certain things that you can do to attract buyers and get a high return on your investment in your home. Thereís only so much time and money that you have to invest in your home. You will be purchasing a new place most likely and will need some capital for that. Read on for some tips on how to cheaply and efficiently make some quick improvements to your home. 


Stage Your Home 


You donít have to create a significant expense to make changes to your home. If thereís one thing you should know about selling your home, you should make an appearance. Clear out the clutter in your home. Then, take some time to stage it. No one who is touring your home should see your personal papers, childrenís toys, and celebrity shrines. Think minimalistic when it comes to the things that need to be in your home when itís put on the market. Having a clean house can make all the difference in selling your home.


First Impressions Are Everything


A mess never makes a good first impression. If things appear in disarray around the property, itís going to deter interest in the home. Make sure the yard looks presentable. Add some plants to the outside of the house. A simple clean up can make a big difference in the property. 


The Kitchen And The Bathroom Are Points Of Interest


People pay particular attention to the kitchen and bathrooms of a home. One reason for this is that these rooms are particularly expensive to renovate. At the very least make sure that these rooms are clean. If you have the time and funds to replace tiles, or replace the sink, definitely complete these projects. 


Donít Try To Take On Projects Yourself


Itís important to recognize what you can and canít do. Hiring a professional to complete your projects can make a big difference. If you donít have a grasp on home renovation procedures, an improvement can turn into a nightmare. It could end up costing you more money and time in the long run. 


Hire A Real Estate Agent


Hire a real estate agent to help you sell your home. Real estate agents understand how to price and market a home for an optimal sale. Fees for sellerís agents are very reasonable and worth it if you want a good price for your home.  


As you can see, there are many simple ways you can get more value out of your home when you head to sell it.            





Categories: Selling Your Home   Real estate  


Posted by TEAM Metrowest on 12/13/2017

Many new homeowners are eager to begin renovations on their home to make it fit the beautiful picture they have in their mind. Unfortunately the aesthetic improvements, while important, are often prioritized over important structural and functional repairs that should be made first.†The key to making smart financial decisions for renovating your home is to have a good budget and to stick to it. Home improvements are one of the few expenses that people often forget to budget for, alongside car repairs and emergency medical expenses. If done properly, however, a budget will help you prioritize your repairs so you'll spend your time and money wisely. In this article, we'll explain how to budget for home repairs in a way that works for you and your family.

Understanding your†money

To budget for home improvements, you first need to budget for other things in your life. Use an app or website like Mint or You Need a Budget†to get a better understanding of how you spend your money. For some, budgeting for home improvements may mean cutting back on other spending areas. Fortunately, these apps break down all of your purchases by categories and help you spend less each month.

Ranking your renovations

If you're dying to update the†bathroom but the†roof†needs to be redone, you should call the roofers first.†Some home improvements are a ticking time bomb: deteriorating roofs, poor†insulation, HVAC issues, water damage, and safety concerns like fire hazards†are all problems that need to be addressed first on your budget. Some will save you money, others could save your life, but all of them are more important than adding closet space in your bathroom.

Estimating costs

Do your research when it comes to the the cost of repairs and home improvements. Once you have a ballpark figure, add it into your budgeting app as a new item on your budget. There is a general rule, when budgeting for home repairs, that you should set aside 1% of the cost of your home for maintenance and repairs each year. However, there are many other factors involved in how much it will cost to upkeep your home like the age of the house, the weather in your area, and how well-maintained the home was before you bought it.

Sticking to your budget

Everyone starts with good intentions, but keeping a budget isn't easy. Thankfully, it has been made much more manageable with the help of apps and websites that link right to your bank accounts. To stick to your home repair budget, make sure you sign up for reminders on your spending and progress. If you're keeping a budget the old fashioned way (pen and paper), put reminders on your calendar each month to check if you're spending too much on home repairs. Another key to successful budgeting it to make sure everyone in the house is on the same page. If your significant other plays a role in home repairs, go over your budget together. This will help you keep one another accountable and set priorities that work for everyone.







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