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April 16th, 2014 
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Perhaps you've been feeling the need for more space in your Toronto home, less space needed or maybe just a different space? You've been wondering which solution will best fit your lifestyle and budget best? Here are some ideas to consider...

If you are planning on remodeling your present home in the near future, you're going to want to ensure that when you resale your property you'll be able to regain the money you've put into the renovation/upgrade.

With some projects, you may recoup more than you have spent! Remember that your pay off also depends on

  • Overall condition of your home
  • Value of similar homes in your neighbourhood (or similar condominiums)
  • Rate at which property values are changing
  • Location

 

What to Remodel

 

In addition to making your home more livable and enjoyable for yourself, your renovations and improvements to your property can also make your property more valuable. According to the Appraisal Institute of Canada, your remodel investment dollars pay back at different rates when you sell your home depending on the type of project you choose. This sample job costs, is an estimate on various remodeling projects:

 Remodel Project

 Approx. Cost

 Expected Return 

 Average Payback

 Minor Kitchen Reno

 $3,000

 $2,300 - $3,000

 75% - 100%

 Major Kitchen Reno

 $25,000

 $18,800 - $25,000

 75% - 100%

 Bathroom Reno

 $8,500

 $6,400 - $8,500

 75% - 100%

 Basement Reno

 $10,000

 $5,000 - $7,500

 50% - 75%

 Fireplace Addition

 $5,000

 $2,500 - $3,750

 50% - 75%

 Deck Addition

 $6,000

 $1,500 - $4,500

 25% - 75%

 Window Replacement

 $8,000

 $4,000 - $6,000

 50% - 75%

 Major Landscaping

 $15,000

 $3,750 - $7,500

 25% - 50%

Industry Experts Suggest...

Kitchen

Add workable areas such as islands and cooking stations and aesthetic pleasing appliances such as commercial-quality and stainless steel, stone or man made natural countertops and ceramic, stone or glass tile back splashes. Add space with a breakfast area or walk-in pantry. Add livability with a computer desk, office area or mud room.

 

Bathroom

Add light with skylights and glass block without losing your privacy. Walk-in showers, vaulted ceilings, recessed medicine cabinets add a feeling of space. Add luxury with finishes such as ceramic or stone tile flooring, heated floors and towel bars and stone countertops.

Windows

New windows will also help you save with your monthly heating costs. Prospective buyers view windows as they do other structural items, so failing to update old ones can have a negative impact. Newer styles such as seamless, casements and some of the modern reproductions are very popular. As media and the consumers become more green, monetary and energy saving elements in your home will amount to big paybacks.

 

Before You Plan Your Budget

  • Imagine the new space you want to create and make sketches. It's easier to plan something you can see. Try to visit similar layouts to get a sense of what it feels like. Review lots of different options.
  • Network with other people who have done a renovation similar to what you are considering. Read books, magazines and Web sites, watch instuctional videos. Take notes and ask a lot of questions before you begin!
  • Think Ahead is this renovation intended to add value when you next sell? Pay attention to the market values in your current neighbourhood. Are you trying to accommodate a growing or shrinking household? Try not to personalize your renovations too much so that when you do plan on selling, you don't have a smaller market of interest. Not everyone may appreciate your massive sized bathroom, that has eliminated the extra bedroom!

The Budget Process

  • Figure out your finances, that you plan on spending without straining other budgets and allow for the rule of thumb (going over budget - save an extra 30%)
  • Figure out your debt-to-income ratio. If you plan on borrowing, you need to know whether you can handle the extra debt. (along with possible extra costs)
  • Bring your drawings, budget and other figures to your Contractor, Architect or Designer for them to help you breakdown the costs.
  • If you plan on doing this renovation yourself, you will be responsible for all the project costs for materials, labour, permit fees and so on.
  • Create a timeline to help contractors plan the project and help you budget efficiently.

 

Calculating Your Renovation Budget

 Construction Labour

Including subcontractors. Multiply wages by estimated hrs. for each worker.

Remember payroll taxes and worker's compensation insurance if you do the hiring. 

 $

 Contractor Fees

Fees charged by contractors and subcontractors, such as electricians etc.

 $

 Construction Materials

Nails, lumber, paint, insulation, flooring tiles, plumbing fixtures etc.

 $

 Tools and Equipment

All tools purchased and rented for the project, from hammers to post-hole diggers.

Include safety equipment such as goggles, hard hats, ear mufflers, etc.

$

 Permit Fees

Contact the City Planning Department. Contractors may handle this for you.

 $

Decorative Essentials

Window treatments, light fixtures, cabinet hardware, bathroom and kitchen hardware etc.

$

 Repairs Due to Renovating

Patching the walls after plumbing, wiring, replanting lawn where equipment or garbage disposal has been kept, etc.

$ 

 Cleanup

Trash rental, hauling fees, dumping fees, removal service.

$

Subtotal      

 Contingencies

Include upgrades, changes, supply shortages, weather delays, miscommunication, unforeseen problems that pop up behind walls/floors etc. Budget an extra 30% of your subtotal.

$

Total

 


Your first task will be to create a realistic budget for your renovation, taking into consideration how long you plan on living in your present home. Before committing to this project, you might want to look at properties in your desired location adding your proposed renovation budget to the current value of your home. Now, you will be able to to make the decision that's right for you...move or renovate!

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