As I’ve said previously, K and I are moving back to our home in Oconomowoc, WI. We’re head over heels excited about it, but there are some things we need to do and some things that we want to do. Today, I’m going to talk about some of the projects we have planned and help you prioritize your home renovations.
What we need to do
There are two/three things that we need to do once we move back.
The first thing is to sure up the foundation. Our house is old, really old. The foundation is not as secure as we need it to be, so that’ll be the first thing we do. Get some extra support posts installed in the basement and secure/replace some of the old joists that have seen better days.
The second thing we have to do is insulate the kitchen. I don’t know what the prior owners did (they remodeled the home and flipped it to us), but the kitchen bleeds AC/heat. In the winter, it’s very clear because it’s darn cold in the kitchen. What’s more, the kitchen sink and the dishwasher will stop working if it gets too cold. To ensure the pipes won’t freeze and burst, and make the kitchen more energy-efficient and comfortable, we have to insulate.
The third thing is not incredibly important but should get done at some point. Off of the kitchen is the back door entrance. You enter into a “three-seasons room” and then enter a second door to get into the kitchen. The three seasons room needs insulation as well. Beneath it, we need to lay a vapor barrier on the ground and spray insulation into the floor joists. Now, this is not very important because of the second door. However, more insulation will allow for more utilization of that room.
What we want to do
This list is pretty long, as is the case for most homeowners. Some of the windows need to be replaced, we want to install an island in the kitchen, and we want to remodel the downstairs bathroom.
With regard to the bathroom, the current setup is one full bath and one-half bath. They are right next to each other, but the half bath (in terms of square footage) is much bigger than the full bath. What we would like to do is demo the wall in between and make it one, big bathroom. The price tag for this is a little higher than the other projects, so it’s a little farther down on the list.
How to prioritize
The first three renovations are no-brainers. These need to get done. Securing the foundation is paramount for our family’s safety, the insulation is important to avoid possible water damage and lower heating costs, and taking care of the back porch/three-season room will expand the usable square footage.
You have to take into account a few things:
- Family safety
- Family comfort
- Financial sense
- ROI – Return on Investment
Safety is your number one priority. That’s what makes a home, being comfortable living there. Replacing windows can be expensive, but they will pay for themself over time with savings in utility costs. In terms of the bathroom, it should increase the value of the home, but how much we spend versus how much the value increases is a factor to consider.
Projects and renovations go hand in hand with home ownership. What’s important is prioritizing home renovations so you take care of what’s needed before you tackle what you want.
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