Cringeworthy Home Improvements and Design Mistakes to Avoid

One of the main mistakes Boulder County homeowners make when renovating their homes is getting stuck in the moment without consideration for the resale value. According to an article by, home improvements often turn into home design mistakes for homeowners caught up in the latest fad or trend. Housing experts and HGTV stars Drew and Jonathan Scott shared advice about increasing home value with better design choices. The home flipping duo warn aspiring home sellers from spending too much time on Pinterest instead of using common design sense.

Failing to open up the foyer

If you have a small foyer, it’s easy for the space to look cluttered. Talk to a general contractor about improving the staircase in a two-story home, opening up walls or adding decorative touches. A foyer gives potential buyers the first experience of being inside of the home. A tight entryway with clutter makes the buyer wonder about storage in the home.

Getting hung up on wall coverings

Wallpaper went out of style for several decades, but some designers incorporate wallpaper in bathrooms. Paying a lot of money for designer wall coverings does not mean home buyers will like your choice. Only hang wallpaper if you can afford to replace it before listing your home. In general, avoid large scale wallpaper projects or loud colors.

Opting for a trendy kitchen design

While it’s great to stay on-trend with design, home improvements focused on the latest trend often miss the mark. That’s because some potential buyers aren’t even interested in the latest fads. When in doubt, it’s always better to err on the side of classic. Bold kitchens fade out of favor quickly, which actually lowers your resale value. Some classic on-trend styles include quartz or granite countertops, laminate or porcelain tile flooring, white cabinets, stainless steel appliances and subway tile backsplashes.

Turning a bedroom into a closet

Converting a bedroom into a home office is not a terrible idea in terms of staging, but giving up a bedroom for a closet sacrifices home value. Boulder County home appraisers base their assessment on square footage as well as the number of bedrooms and bathrooms. In most cases, a large closet does not translate into a higher appraised value.

Skipping the open floor plan

Another mistake when it comes to home improvements is close in space or forgo the open space design. Boxed-in rooms make some people feel claustrophobic. Also, a 2,000 square foot home with high ceilings and an open design feels larger than a 2,500 square foot space home with boxed-in kitchens. When making home improvements, enlarge smaller kitchens and add kitchen islands to boost resale value. Closed off and compartmentalized homes work to a point for multi-generational households, but having a shared open kitchen and Great Room still appeals to most people.

Another major sin home sellers commit is leaving rooms dark and dingy with only artificial lighting. While light-color flooring make a space feel bitter, nothing replaces natural light from large windows. Remove old, dusty mini-blinds when staging a home to sell. While heavy drapes help block the sun, they don’t add to the staging efforts. Housing experts point out people get a great ROI (return on investment) by replacing outdated windows and doors. Impress potential buyers with your lower utility bills. Finally, avoid installing wall-to-wall carpet. Modern flooring choices include vinyl plank, laminate, porcelain tile and hardwood. I can help sellers think about how to get the best bang for their buck when it comes to home improvements and staging. For more advice on getting your home in Boulder County ready to list, please contact me.