BHD’s Top 10 ways to add value to your home!

Nashville, or should we say Nowville, is experiencing unprecedented growth. Last month, Consumer Reports magazine did a case study of a home in Austin that underwent a $65,000 renovation that raised the home’s value by $142,000. The article said the renovation was smart and strategic but also had a lot to do with the market in Austin, 20% appreciation in the last 3.5 years. It got us thinking about Nashville. After looking it up, we learned Nashville appreciation rate for the last 3 years was 23.5, even more than Austin.

Renovations come in all sizes but at the end of the day, homeowner’s usually have the same thing in the back of their mind— resale value. Are the dollars going in going to generate a return on investment or are they going to fall flat. Sometimes it is a war between renovating for personal use and renovating for resale. Other times, it is a war between making luxury upgrades you will enjoy verses the fear of over-improving and never seeing a return for the work. BHD knows the struggle is real and we are here to help you find the perfect balance. Check out of list of top 10 ways to add value to your home and make sure to read Consumer Reports “8 Ways to Boost Your Home’s Value”!

B H D ‘ S   T O P  1 0  W A Y S   T O   A D D   V A L U E


BethHaley_AB_Buckley-56691. Kitchen –  The big decision with kitchens is whether to invest in a gut remodel or to work within the ex existing framework. Whatever the decision, make sure your kitchen is at the bare minimum clean and functional. This usually means new cabinet fronts or repainting, countertops, backsplash, hardware, lighting, and flooring.  Buyers love stainless steel, hard stone surfaces like granite or quartz, and hardwood.

 

 

 

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2. Floor plan – A lot of buyers crave open floor plans and are eager to buy properties that have already been renovated. When considering your own renovation, think about doing work to open up smaller rooms and how to create a good flow through your home. The range in this kind of work is extensive so talking to a designer will help you see all the options! If you do decide to get into major reno work moving walls, consider making the floor plan suitable for aging in place; In 2040, 21% of the population will be senior citizens and the current housing stock won’t be able to accommodate. Some elements are first floor master suites, non-threshold showers, and widening tight spaces to allow wheelchair or walker access.

 

 

 

 

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3. Bathrooms – Like kitchens, any work done to your bathroom will likely add value to your home. Ranging from the most simple and obvious stuff like replacing medicine cabinets, lighting, countertops, vanity, flooring to the complete renovations, focus on creating a clean, functional space.

 

 

 

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4. Flooring – Get rid of outdated flooring. Old carpet has to go. Linoleum has to go. Refinish hardwood floors. Add hardwood floors. Add tile. Whatever you do, unify the look of your home through flooring. It can make the whole house look bigger and it will do wonders to the overall character of the space.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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5. Storage – Make your storage areas work for you and make sure to add storage areas if you undertake any renovation that either removes existing storage or reconfigures the floor plan. Homeowner’s love dedicated mudrooms, built-ins, pantries, walk-in closets, and other unique storage setups particular to your home. Find the opportunities and capitalize on every nook and cranny available.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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6. Cosmetics – Cosmetics really come down to making your house feel like it has been well cared for. Make sure nothing is broken in your home and nothing screams outdated. Simple fixes like new lighting, new doors, new hardware, new faucets, and even new trim / molding are a surefire way to increase the value of your home. Also, don’t forget to paint, paint paint!

 

 

 

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7. Landscaping – Take care that the outside of your home appears low-maintenance. Add value by replacing part of your backyard with a patio with seating, fire pit, and BBQ area. Make sure the curb appeal of your home is as good as it can be. Replacing the front door, stoop, and steps is a classic way to modify the front facade. You would be surprised what a significant statement those 3 elements make on the overall look! * Photo: Courtesy, Bagnato Architects of Austraila. Photo Credit: Axiom Photography.

 

 

 

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8. Technology – Integrate technology whenever possible. Simple upgrades like USB outlets in bedrooms to programmable thermostats create the feel of a modern, renovated home. Consider creating a focal point in your home by adding a modern, linear fireplace or renovate an existing fireplace. Small investments can result in big returns upon investment when you consider the overall effect on the aesthetic of your home.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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9. Energy efficiency – Make sure your home is as energy efficient as it can be. People love buying older homes but they don’t want to feel like the home is outdated. If you have a crawl space below your house or in the attic, make sure it is insulated. If your windows need to be replaced, look for Energy Star / Low-E coated windows. Buyers are savvy and will recognize the value added. An easy update is to buy new, energy efficient appliances.

 

 

 

 

 

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10. Systems – Everything should be in working order- or in tip-top shape. Either you pay for it upfront and reap the rewards or the inspector finds all the flaws and buyers have leverage in their offer. Try to sell your home without punch list items that need to be addressed, anything from an old water heater to an outdated furnace. Nobody wants to feel like they are buying a house that has been fixed up cosmetically but is still rusty under the hood!

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.consumerreports.org/home-improvement/8-ways-to-boost-your-home-value/

http://www.fortunebuilders.com/nashville-real-estate-market-trends/

 

What it means to be a sustainable designer in 2016

The first word that comes to mind when thinking about sustainable design in 2016 is versatility. As a firm we specialize in sustainable design, yet our interiors aren’t stereotypically “green”. Our resource rooms are chocked full of locally sourced products, green textiles, recycled glass tiles, and reclaimed wood yet you would never know unless you read all the labels. Green manufactured products look just as good as traditionally manufactured products and often times, they outperform. We use green products in historic renovations as well as new construction because of the range of options  and their versatility to fit any design style, from eclectic to artisan to modern. We love the ability to create gorgeous spaces that also happen to be green!

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By designing for the widest range of people possible you eliminate the need for future renovations.  Here we have a bathroom with personality that is both ADA compliant and has a wood-look tile floor with 66% recycled content.

Being a sustainable designer means wearing many hats. You are a researcher, always seeking new products in a rapidly changing industry that give the right look yet are manufactured responsibly. You are an engineer, combining products to increase efficiency and create innovative solutions. You are an educator, taking your research and innovations to work collaboratively with contractors, and clients. Lastly, you are a psychologist, working within the built environment to create beautiful, healthy, positive spaces.

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This bamboo vanity with recycled content glass tile is both sustainable and gorgeous!

We see sustainable design as an evolving understanding of practices and techniques we can use to better serve our clients and the environment. To us, it is staggering that in 2015 the built environment continued to account for 30-40% of human impact on the planet.  While our work is specifically interior design, we see ourselves as part of the equation that can limit the effect our interiors have on the environment. We strongly support historic preservation and historic remodels and completely adore whole house renovations that push us to reconfigure the floor plan to work for today’s modern family, while working within the original footprint of the home. To us, preserving and enhancing what is already there makes sense.

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This gorgeous table and chairs are a great example of repurposing. Sometimes all it takes is a great vintage find, a professional painter and a good upholsterer. Repurposing is one of our favorite ways to work green design into our projects.

BHD’s mission is to help our client’s balance their homes overall environmental friendliness and efficiency with visually pleasing designs. Some might ask how will my project be influenced if I work with a sustainable design firm. Will it cost more? Will my project get LEED certification? Will it be 100% organic?  Will my project look “sustainable”?  All these questions get to the heart of what it means to be a sustainable designer and an experienced sustainable designer can help answer all these questions for you.

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This historic home remodel stayed within the original footprint and yet we were able to open up the space to create this generous kitchen.  The reclaimed floors blend seamlessly with the existing 100 year old flooring.

In 2016, sustainable design is no longer a small niche market. Every year we see more and more companies switch their manufacturing techniques from the traditional heat / burn / treat method to green chemistry. There is more transparency for how products are made, with some companies offering anything from full Life Cycle Analysis, Green Guard Certified. or percent recycled content. Designers, builders, contractors, and architects work in tandem to create integrated systems for the home that ensure the house is energy efficient and low-impact.

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Cork floors are great for aging in place as they are offer soft cushion for the body and they are an easily renewable, sustainable product. Cork is a really good product to use because it is easy to transition to existing flooring. We love that it is stylish too!

Interior design can have a substantial impact on the health of your home and the overall longevity of the planet. As designers we recognize the direct correlation between green house gases, the heat island effect, and climate change. We also know the importance of removing toxins from interior environments and the importance of restoring the connection between the natural world and interiors. We are proud of our commitment to bringing elements of sustainable design to all our clients. Call us when you are ready to get started on your own project!

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An integrated compost station in this kitchen counter made perfect sense for our client and helps promote a sustainable practice. Little details make the difference.

 

ADA Transitions

The best transitions are no transitions. But let’s face it.  We hardly ever have only one flooring material through out our homes.  The best we can do is make the transition as smooth as possible.
The Americans with Disabilities Act sets standards and guidelines to insure public safety and ease of accessibility within a space.  Below is the minimum requirements set for a beveled flooring transition.  This sets a standard from one flooring material to another and insures that the changing of materials does not create a tripping hazard or prevent fluid movement from material to material.

It reads like this:

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And visually looks like this:

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…ummm……whaaaa??

Exactly.

What does this mean in your home?  If flooring transitions are not carefully planned for, it could mean you might have a toe catcher like this.

Below shows a tile/wood combination butted right up to each other.

Tiles of the same thickness can make a smooth transition from on to another in a area like this barrier free shower.

Small metal transitions strips are often used to glide easily from one material to another like shown in this cork to carpet transition.

Another safe way to address area rugs are to inset them into the surrounding flooring material.  This example is shown with hardwood flooring.

Commonly, marble thresholds are used at bathroom floor transitions.  These work best when they are flush with the surrounding materials.  This one also serves as a wonderful clean starting/stopping point for the penny round mosaics.

How fun is this dining are defined by the hexagon tiles?  And the transition…practically seamless!

And lastly, this bathroom tile has an inset of teak flooring that rests above the shower floor drains.  Perfect idea for a seamless no slope shower design!

Hope you have a nice trip and see you next fall!!