Thursday, October 24, 2013

Updates and Resale

I am not thinking about selling my condo. Ok, truthfully, I actually think about it a lot- but then I remember real estate fees, lawyer fees, TWO land transfer taxes, and the cost of a bigger mortgage and I stop thinking about it :). I like my little condo and I like that it allows me to save my pennies for travel and lifestyle choices. But regardless, I do know that ONE day I am going to see this little place and I need to make choices for resale. FYI- just last week I passed the 4 year anniversary of living here!! Crazytown.

The problem is this: my condo was built in 2008 and it was the first condo on the block! Now the block is filled with numerous condos and they were all built after mine (duh). Do you know what happened after 2008? Higher end finishes became standard choices. I am surrounded by hardwood, granite, and stainless steel! The main thing I have going for me is that my square footage is actually a pretty good size for the area (a lot of units for sale can't fit a bed and a couch), so that at least works in my favour.

I have also been making updates slowly since I got in here!

1. I painted the whole condo
2. I installed a patio floor outside
3. I updated my bathroom countertop from laminate to a modern cut marble
4. I did smaller updates like shelving, shoe racks, and bathroom fixtures

I also think my choices of furniture and accessories make my home look nice and modern, and in an area with a lot of rented-out units, it "shows" very well.

(I'm sorry, but real photos show computer cords!)
Now, I am aware the condo still needs some updates to make it comparable to other units in the area. I need to take care of that terrible carpet in the front hall, I need to switch out the laminate countertops in the kitchen, and install a new sink and faucet there while I am at it. If I was super rich, I would also update the fridge to a sleeker white model.

Oh, and for the record, I actually like white appliances. They look nice in my white-funitured condo, therefore fading a bit into the background, and don't show fingerprints. However, I know there are nicer, sleeker white fridges out there vs my textured model. But the fridge works great so that seems like a huge waste of money. 

When I was planning my bathroom remodel, I originally wanted to tear out the floor and shower tile and go all sleek and modern in there. Yes, it would have looked awesome and impressed buyers to have a more custom bathroom, but you really have to weigh the cost of updates vs resale value so I opted instead to update the sink area. I need to get this condo at least up to the same standards as my competition and save my monies for big overhauls for my future home.

2013 was the year of the bathroom, but that is almost done, so I think I need to pick my next focus! I am leaning towards figuring out the front hall because the kitchen countertops actually aren't terrible (despite their laminateness). The carpet in the hall though? It is dingy, roughed up by people and cats, faintly stained, and front hall is carpeted and that is bad enough! I live in Canada people, I bring in all sorts of snow and mud.

I also need to work on a better solution for storage in there. The yellow dresser isn't working out for storing my boots, the closet is a huge mess and needs to be better organized, and I think I need a better rug because that one bunches under the door a lot and is faded.

Oh, and new floors!!

New floors come with some complications
- Matching the existing hardwood (do they even still make my floor?)
- Splicing into existing hardwood for a seamless flow
- Getting permission from the board to take out the carpet (oh yes, there are bylaws about carpeting!)
- Paying for the floor (I have heard they aren't free)

Have you ever tied existing hardwood into old? I don't want to have to sand and restain everything (it is engineered, which the internets tells me I'd only get one shot at sanding), because I'd have no place to move all my furniture. I think if I can find the same floor I can have it spliced it to the end of the existing, but I am worried about the installation costs.

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