Jamaican News, February 15, 2918 (Mckoy’s News) — New Home Construction
As a homeowner, keeping track of the current trends in new construction is just plain common sense. With a better knowledge of what buyers want in new homes, it is easier to determine how to make an existing home more attractive. After all, even people who do not plan to sell anytime soon make improvements, and they want to ensure a good investment. How might homeowners look to patterns in new construction to determine their next big project?
Air Conditioning: Everyone Likes to be Cool
The technology for air conditioning has been around for many decades. However, it took quite a while for the preference for this home feature to become the norm for new construction. In the 1970s, a little less than half of the new homes offered the cooling technology. By 2016, home buyer preferences were clear: Buyers want to feel that sweet, sweet chill, with all the dehumidifying benefits that central air conditioning also provides.
New Home Construction: Central air has the benefit of effective cooling at virtually any high heat, without the view obstruction of a window air conditioning box. Homeowners who lack central air in their homes might consider having it put in. Homes that already have central heating can usually sustain central air without a lot of invasive installation work.
Bathrooms: The 1.5 Is a Dying Breed
The idea of the six Brady children fighting over access to a single bathroom is a concept that began losing popularity rapidly in the 1970s. These days, home buyers looking for a viable space tend to look at homes with 1.5 baths about as they would bell-bottom jeans and a tape deck: outdated and out of sync with the modern household. People who want to impress might consider at least two bathrooms, and potentially more if it makes financial sense.
Homeowners should also understand how bathrooms are typically classified for real estate purposes. A full bath has a toilet, sink, shower, and tub (often a prefabricated shower/tub combination). A three-quarter bath may have a toilet, sink, and shower. A half-bath sometimes called a “powder room,” only has a toilet and a sink. New homes often offer a half-bath for short-term visitors, plus a full master bathroom and a full second bathroom for any other inhabitants.
Bedrooms: 3 or More, Skewing Toward More
The average household size has decreased somewhat since the 1970s. Although fewer members in a household put less pressure on bedroom size, home buyers still expect to have plenty of rooms to spread out. Decades ago, homes with three bedrooms made up about two-thirds of new homes. Nowadays, the average new home is evenly split between three and four bedrooms.
New Home Construction: The number of bedrooms plays a significant role in a home’s appraised value, so homeowners should carefully consider any upgrades that might influence the number of bedrooms. Adding a bedroom onto a home may cost a lot of money, but it may help smaller, older homes to compete in the current market. Although some regional trends encourage people to consolidate small bedrooms into one larger room with a walk-in closet, this might not be the most practical investment for most homeowners.
Exterior Materials: No Wrong Answers?
New Home Construction: A proper exterior for a home is so dependent on the climate and weather of a particular region, not to mention the style preferences of the area. Wood used to be more popular, but with a more complicated upkeep, newer homes are less likely to use it. The introduction of vinyl siding in the 1990s made it one of the most likely choices, due to its relatively minimal cost and a decent lifespan. Brick is still a strong contender since it is easy to maintain and looks great but generally requires a larger initial investment. Fiber cement is steadily growing since it is hardy and can mimic other siding types. In the right climate, stucco is an ideal choice that can last a lifetime. Since there are so many fair options, homeowners should look at trends in their area to get a better sense for which exterior might yield the best long-term return on investment.
Keep an Eye on New Home Construction
As with all real estate trends, current homeowners should keep their eyes open, but avoid acting too quickly. Those who are worried they need to get in with the tiny home trend might be able to remember when larger and larger homes were all the rage years ago. Fads come and go, and homeowners should not feel compelled to completely reinvent their homes every few years to suit what everyone else seems to be doing.
New Home Construction: on the other hand, people who live in a home for many years will usually make at least a few improvements over that time. They should aim for upgrades with the longest staying power. Existing homes–even older ones–that offer many of the same amenities and conveniences that buyers of new homes receive will typically retain their value and sell faster when put on the real estate market. When in doubt, look to the local competition for a few clues. After all, buyers have the final say in what improvements are most valuable.
Homeowners generally want to keep a home that would be easy to sell if need be. However, they should also remember that the best homes have well-reasoned and practical upgrades, rather than simply all the improvements possible. People who are planning to sell a home within a couple of years might ask a local real estate agent for the best ways to invest their money for a future benefit.
Justin Havre REALTOR®
Justin Havre & Associates
8820 Blackfoot Trail SE, Suite 115, Calgary AB T2J 3J1