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The Best Rooms to Renovate

Last month, we shared five tips for buying a fixer upper. Now, we want to take a closer look at tackling those updates after you find your perfect home.

When it comes to home renovations, clients are often confused about where to start. Is it best to update important living spaces, like your kitchen or living room, to get them done? Or should you start with hidden rooms, like a powder bathroom, to ensure that gathering spots remain usable for longer?

First, let’s consider the best rooms to renovate in your home if you’re handling the renovation on your own.

For more mild renovations — like painting and flooring updates — you may want to tackle them by yourself. If so, develop your plan of attack based on your need to live in the house during the remodel. To move forward most efficiently, divide your project into sections and move through adjacently. Resist the temptation to jump around, as it may prolong your renovation project!

Additionally, start with your highest priority (usually the kitchen – more on that below!). That way, if you lose motivation or run out of money, you still tackle the most important room(s). You may also choose to focus on the big repairs first and then move into the cosmetic updates. Seeing the end results of those major renovations will help motivate you during any challenges that arise and push you to keep going.

Now, let’s look at the best approach if you plan to hire a professional contractor.

For a more extensive remodel, you’ll want to follow the order determined by the specialists. For instance, in most cases, plumbing and electrical work is completed together. If your general contractor asks for your preference, you can suggest an inside-out approach: Start with the inside (think the mechanical features in the walls) and work towards the outside (like cosmetic finishes).

It’s also important to remember that, if you’re under a time crunch, a professional will always work faster than what you can achieve on your own. They know what smaller projects can be done simultaneously. Plus, a full crew can accomplish more during each work day.

Most homeowners agree that their kitchen is the number one priority when it comes to home renovations.

After all, this is the room where you spend most of your waking hours. Whether you’re enjoying breakfast before you leave for the day, baking cookies after school, or eating dinner together as a family, people often consider the kitchen to be the heart of the home. Because of this emotional connection, it’s important that this room is functional, inviting, and organized, reflecting the overall feel of your home.

Before beginning your renovations, consider what you most need to rejuvenate your kitchen. Do you want entirely new cabinets? Or do you think a coat of paint and new hardware will do the trick? Do your appliances all work, and do they match? If not, which ones need to be replaced? What about the overall layout? Do you want to add an island or new section of cabinets for more seating and/or storage? Not only will your new kitchen look great, but it’ll also make a big difference in resale value if you decide to sell.

Before we close, let’s consider one final tip for home renovations.

Remember that working in the wrong order can lead to catastrophic problems. If you mess up, you may risk wasting time, money, or both on making repairs to already-completed projects. Bigger mistakes may require bringing in an expert — which is a good reason to hire a professional in the first place! Ultimately, working through your renovation in a methodical, sensical way will save you time and money and lead to better results.

Let The Urban Dog Group help you with your real estate needs. Contact Christine Elias at

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1 Comment

Hey, thanks for the blog! I've been on the lookout for something like this. I reside in Dubai and work at Talentmate, one of the reputed UAE free job posting sites. My home state is Florida, where my family resides. We own a house there and are planning to renovate it. Your insights on renovation have given me some great ideas; I was completely clueless about it before.

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