Making “Home Sweet Home” Sweeter

When the Housing Market Gives Us Lemons - Let's Make Lemonade! Photo credits: Jose Luis Hernandez Zurdo/
When the Housing Market Gives Us Lemons - Let's Make Lemonade! Photo credits: Jose Luis Hernandez Zurdo/

When the Housing Market Gives Us Lemons, Let’s Make Lemonade!

The statistics are staggering and the numbers don’t lie. Whether it’s the sorry state of the housing market or the fact that they just really love their homes, more and more Atlantans are opting to stay in their current residences longer. According to real estate search engine, Trulia – the number of home sales in Atlanta from June 2010 to June 2011 has plummeted sharply by an estimated 80.9% and the number of listings has dropped by nearly 1,000 in the last month alone. While listing prices seem to be slowly creeping their way back up and certain neighborhoods such as North Buckhead and Southwest Atlanta appear to buck the trend at times, it appears we’re still in for a long and bumpy ride for some time to come as the ship struggles to right itself. Shy of the necessity to move for a job relocation or inability to keep up with current mortgage payments, many of us are choosing to stay put and make the best of the home that we loved enough to invest in and call “home sweet home”.

The most important thing you can do is to avoid feeling as though you’re trapped in limbo. Don’t look at it as a house – it’s your home, the place where your children’s laughter rings through the hallways, where meals and memories are shared, and where love and happiness flourishes. Of course, families grow and their needs evolve – so while you may feel tethered to a home you’ve grown a tad weary of, there are some relatively easy ways to spice things up and make that “home sweet home” even sweeter. If you feel as though a move is definitely in your future, you’ll want to invest wisely in any home remodeling projects.  According to the National Association of Realtors’ Cost vs. Value Report for 2010-2011, in Atlanta the top ten remodeling projects that saw the greatest return on investment when it came time to resell included:

  • Creation of an attic bedroom (72.2%)
  • Basement remodel (70%)
  • Deck addition (wood  – 72.8%; composite – 66.2%))
  • Entry door replacement (102.1%)
  • Garage door replacement (83.9%)
  • Major kitchen remodel (68.7%); minor kitchen remodel (72.8%)
  • Siding replacement – vinyl (72.4%)
  • Window replacement (vinyl – 71.6%; wood – 72.4%)
  • Two-story addition (65%)
  • Bathroom remodel (64.1%)

You may find that each of these home improvements can dramatically increase your family’s enjoyment of the home during the time that you remain there, in addition to allowing you to recoup a major portion of the cost when it comes time to move. Replacement of doors, windows and siding can enhance the exterior beauty and curb appeal of the home, while renovations to the kitchen and bathrooms can update the look of the interior. Additions – such as a second story to a one-level home or a deck to the rear of the residence – can add much-needed interior and exterior living space. The same can be accomplished by simply finishing an attic and/or a basement. There’s no need to feel trapped in a home when you can virtually customize it to meet your family’s specific needs and collective personality – while keeping in mind that you are making a smart investment and potentially increasing  your home’s market value.

My company – Highlight Homes, LLC – can help you with every single remodeling project on the list you see above. I’m happy to meet with you for a no-obligation consultation to discuss your family’s needs and develop possible solutions. My team and I can draw up the plans, then make your ideas leap from the paper into your very own reality. We’ve built a solid reputation for completing projects on time, on budget, and well above expectations. I welcome your call at 678.873.9234 or you can e-mail me at What are you waiting for?  Let’s get started!

Making “Home Sweet Home” Sweeter