HGTV's Property Brothers, Drew and Jonathan Scott, were one the star attractions for this year's SHE Expo in Chattanooga. I've never had the privilege of attending one of these Expos before, there were lots of HEs in attendance as well, and enjoyed the experience immensely. It was fun to network with my friends, meet the different vendors, and receive great information from the presentations. There was even a cash bar that my neighbors and sister located in about 0.3 seconds post arrival.
The Property Brothers really didn't say anything that a good and professional realtor wouldn't say to you. It was refreshing, however, to hear the stars speak candidly and honesty in relation to "Real Estate Reality". They are also really easy on the eyes. Wow!
The first myth debunked was the fact that an entire house renovation can be done for a budget of $50k as it appears to be on their show, or even a major one-room renovation. The brothers donate their time and much of their materials are given in exchange for advertisement. It is good to start any project with a good, professional, and realistic budget. It is also a good idea to talk with your Realtor about the payback on investments and what buyers are looking for.
The Brothers also stressed the point of bringing in the professionals and getting it done right the first time, and the importance of pulling the proper building permits. Buyers are savvier than ever and you will be asked if permits were pulled. In fact, that question is on the TN Seller Disclosure filled out be the owners and presented to buyers before an offer is made on the house.
Another good real estate point; in renovations, stick with the classics. An example given was granite; flashy today can mean outdated tomorrow (writes the person with the spruce green cabinets and exotic granite, see below; sometimes, you just need to please yourself if you plan to stay in your house awhile).
They also stressed the point your Realtor will make to you if your house is For Sale; kitchens and bathrooms matter. They are generally on the top of a buyer's "must have" list.
"Make every room have a feature" is wonderful advice. Special houses stand out, and features make houses special and memorable. Think about every room in your house and decide what makes it special; a stained glass window, a magnificent fireplace mantle, a beautiful granite bar, a nice water feature, outstanding tiled shower, etc.
In closing, the best advice of Drew and Jonathan's presentation was to never over extend yourself to buy a home. It may be worth renting a couple of more years to afford your down payment or to afford the monthly house payments. Your home should be your sanctuary and the place you look forward to returning every day. It's a big part of your spirit, your energy, and your general well being and should never be a source stress or anxiety.