If we’ve learned one thing from all of those home improvement shows on TV, it’s that homeowners love solving problems. That’s part of the fun: a home is like a puzzle whose pieces you can endlessly rearrange to achieve your lifestyle and financial goals. It’s a canvas for your creativity, ingenuity, and investment savvy. Plus, it’s just really fun to renovate, remodel, restore, and improve your home year after year.
But sometimes it’s hard to see what the solution could actually be. There’s an area or aspect of your home that you just aren’t satisfied with, yet there doesn’t seem to be an easy fix. This is where some homeowners throw their hands in the air and walk away—but perhaps they should look at the problem from a different angle.
Here are five common home design problems, and the solutions that bring results.
1. Not Enough Storage
Even if you consider yourself an exceptionally neat person, you’ll have trouble keeping your place in order if you don’t have enough storage space. This is especially true for entryways, kitchens, bathrooms and wardrobes. Many people also find that their living areas are short on functional storage.
Solution: You can always make do with freestanding shelving units, but in order to make the home more functional on a permanent basis, it’s worth looking into home renovations that build more storage directly into the areas that need it most. Skilled contractors can dream up storage solutions that may surprise you, especially in cramped areas and smaller homes.
2. Insufficient Natural Light
Not all homes have the luxury of abundant natural lighting that floods into every room. When areas of the home are dark, they can become less functional and less inviting. Lamps and track lighting only do so much, especially during the day.
Solution: Solar tubes and skylights are two solutions that can be implemented by a qualified home renovator. They’ll take advantage of the daylight directly overhead and bring it down into the dark areas of your home, without compromising structural integrity.
3. Outdated Kitchen
Is your kitchen stuck in the 1970s? How about the 1950s? What was trendy and chic in decades gone by is literally an eyesore today. No wonder so many people on those house hunting TV shows focus on the kitchen and how they can bring it up to speed.
Solution: We all know that kitchen renovations are expensive, but they’re also one of the smartest investments a homeowner can make. Industry sources report very high returns on kitchens when they’re done tastefully and professionally by a skilled contractor. Even a moderate kitchen renovation can go a long way for current and future owners.
4. Undesirable Floor Plan
Sometimes a property seems to have it all on paper, but when you walk through, the floor plan doesn’t make much sense. Tight corridors, tiny rooms and strange configurations make life difficult.
Solution: Opening up the floor plan is a worthy consideration for many homeowners. A skilled renovator will be able to handle this without breaking a sweat, and many people are pleasantly surprised by the cost. Basic tear downs can run as low as a few hundred dollars, depending on the size and structural details. In most cases, refinishing will be an added cost.
5. The exterior doesn’t do it justice
The interior of a property is perfect for you—a good reflection of your tastes and needs—but the exterior is another story altogether. This is a discrepancy that many homeowners want to address at some point, whether they’re considering a new property or looking to improve their current home.
Solution: Exterior renovations can include new siding, custom trim work, new roofing, doors and windows, gutters, and even additions that add depth and dimension (not to mention square footage) to a home. These projects can make a huge difference when done professionally.
Finding solutions that stick
Each problem you solve as a homeowner makes a difference, both immediately and down the line. Since discerning homeowners want to get the most of their property and its resale value, they want solutions that are solid and long-term. By understanding some of the most common design problems and solutions—and seeking the help of a qualified home renovation specialist—you’ll be able break through those pesky limitations and bring your property to a new level of comfort, efficiency and aesthetic value.