Save Money on a Kitchen Remodel


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Last week I wrote about tips for budget friendly makeovers.  All of those still apply here, but there are also some specific tips that apply only to kitchen remodels that can be of use if you are trying to stick to a budget.

First, in addition to prioritizing, make sure to consider your culinary needs when choosing appliances.  If most of your cooking consists of reheating or calling for takeout, then choosing an expensive, top of the line stove just for looks is not your best use of money.  Another way to save money on your appliances is to skip options and extras that aren’t necessary for your needs.

Additionally, rather than focusing on buying things such as a light fixture or faucet at a discount, do your best to take advantage of savings on your big-ticket items such as cabinets, counter tops, and appliances to get the most bang for your buck.

Another great tip is to mix and match high and low end products for an affordable blend.  For example, affordable cabinets with decorative high end hardware can have the look of custom cabinets, or since the eye is drawn up rather than down, put your money into a beautiful backsplash and scale back on the countertop material.

Another way to save on cabinetry is to forgo custom and retrofit the cabinets that you choose with roll-outs, dividers and other similar items from storage shops for a far less expensive solution than custom work.

Thinking of buying or selling a home in Sussex County?  Give us a call at Cooper Realty Associates and put us to work for you – 302-629-6693.

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3 Kitchen Trends To Avoid


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If you are redoing your kitchen, or even just thinking about it, you may be tempted to update this popular room with some of the current trends.  Some trends, however, should be avoided so that your kitchen will age well and not be outdated in just a year or two.  Here are five current trends to avoid in order to add years to the life of your kitchen:

1.  Farmhouse Sinks.  These popular sinks are beautiful and all over design shows and floor rooms, but these trendy sinks may be outdated in just a few years.  For a sink that will stand the test of time go for something deep and stainless.

2.  Colorful Appliances.  White appliances are trending right now, but stainless is what will last forever.  Because stainless goes with every décor from country to contemporary to traditional, it’s really the best bet for anyone.

3.  Decorative Range Hoods.  Although still trendy, range hoods as a kitchen focal point is waning in popularity.  Avoid it to help your kitchen stand the test of time.

Thinking of buying or selling a home in Sussex County?  Give us a call at Cooper Realty Associates and put us to work for you – 302-856-6434.

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Three Questions You Should Ask Before A Remodel


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Question-Marks

If you are thinking of remodeling your kitchen or any other part of your home here are three questions you should ask yourself before you start anything:

1.  What is the purpose of this remodel?  Do you want a fresh look, completely new function, or a serious overhaul?

2.  What is most important?  Create a list of your priorities in the order of their importance to you before you begin and you will have a much easier time making budget choices in the long run.

3.  What investment can I afford?  Regardless of your personal budget, consider the value of the other homes nearby and the current value of your own home.  Over spending may give you the results you want immediately, but it might not be the best long term investment, so be sure to consider your options.

Thinking of buying or selling a home in Sussex County?  Give us a call at Cooper Realty Associates and put us to work for you – 302-856-6434.

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Three Things To Consider Before Starting A Project


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If you’re thinking of doing any projects or renovations in your home, here are three things to consider before you begin:

1.  Budget.  This is probably the most important aspect to decide on before you begin.  Setting a budget will help you make decisions about everything else from whether to do it yourself or hire a contractor to what materials to choose.

2.  Time Frame.  Once you have a budget in mind, do research so that you can come up with a time frame within which you’d like to see different steps of the project completed.  Keep in mind that the more custom your job is, the longer it will take.  This is especially important if you are renovating a kitchen or an only bathroom, as you will need to make alternate arrangements for day-to-day activities such as cooking/eating and showering.

3.  Work Sequence.  If you’re doing the project yourself, think about the job as a whole and come up with a specific work sequence for your projects.  Sticking to a specific order can save a lot of headaches, cleanup and mistakes.  Always start at the top and work your way down.  Ceiling, walls, and finally floors to prevent damage to newly renovated areas.

Thinking of buying or selling a home in Sussex County?  Give us a call at Cooper Realty Associates and put us to work for you – 302-856-6434.

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Tips for Getting the Best Remodel Bid

Yesterday I wrote about tips for finding a contractor. Today, I am following up with tips for getting the best bid. When you’re planning an addition or remodel, knowing the average costs of the job you hope to do is helpful. One helpful guide for figuring average costs is to judge by the square footage of your space. Generally speaking, for a gut remodel,


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Yesterday I wrote about tips for finding a contractor.  Today, I am following up with tips for getting the best bid.  When you’re planning an addition or remodel, knowing the average costs of the job you hope to do is helpful.  One helpful guide for figuring average costs is to judge by the square footage of your space.  Generally speaking, for a gut remodel, a kitchen remodel falls between $170-180 per square foot, a powder room averages around $130-140 per square foot, a full bathroom averages around $155-170 per square foot, and a family or living room runs about $85-$100 per square foot.  Once you factor the average range for your space, adjust for labor costs in your location (whether they are higher or lower than the average in the nation).  In the Sussex County area, increasing the general estimate by about 30-40% is probably a good average.  Once you’ve done that, you can adjust your estimated cost up or down based on the finishes you desire.  These averages assume mid-range fixtures, but if you’re going for upgrades such as granite countertops or stainless steel appliances in a kitchen or stone tile, heated floors, and soaking tubs in the bathroom, you need to raise your number again, by at least 30-50% depending on the number of upgrades you want.  Once you have a very general idea of the kind of estimate you are looking at, you can adjust your project to fit your budget (consider less updates or skip the gut remodel and replace or refinish what you’ve got instead!).  Then, go out there and get your (minimum of 3!) estimates.  Finally, be upfront with the contractors you choose about your bottom line and they will be able to help you get the most bang for your buck!

Thinking of buying or selling a home in Sussex County?  Give us a call at Cooper Realty Associate and put us to work for you – 302-644-2266!

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