This week’s Q&A column is sponsored and written by Jillian Keck Hogan of Jillian Keck Hogan Real Estate Group and McEnearney Associates Realtors®, the leading real estate firm in Alexandria. To learn more about this article and relevant Alexandria market news, contact Jillian at 703-951-7655 or email [email protected]. You may also submit your questions to McEnearney Associates via email for response in future columns.
Question: What are your recommendations for updating our home with styles that will last?
Answer: I get this question a good bit from clients who are updating homes they are living in and also from those who have purchased investment properties. It is important to personally enjoy what you choose, but it is a great idea to keep in mind your plans for selling/renting down the line.
Your Personal Home
You either just bought a new home or are ready to refresh the space you currently call home — both are so exciting! Making updates to your kitchen and bathroom tend to always improve the value of your home. I would truly look at each space and see if little adjustments could be made versus a complete gut renovation.
In a bathroom you can change out a countertop, vanity, mirror and light fixtures and immediately see the entire space transform. Same could be said for a kitchen with new countertops, cabinet knobs, light fixtures, backsplash or faucets. After a great conversation with our friend Caroline Goree with Madigan Schuler, a Boutique Interior Design firm in Alexandria, she shared that fun wallpaper is a great way to enhance a space and can give it a personal touch.
For future changes you can reverse back to paint for a reasonable price. Caroline also suggests selecting “trend” items in areas that are easier to change out. For example, changing kitchen knobs, lighting and plumbing fixtures are typically less expensive than painting or refinishing the entire kitchen cabinetry. If this is a concern of yours, consider keeping those larger selections simple.
A geometric wallpaper adds a touch whimsy to the powder room of a historic Cameron Street home.
Typically, with investments the owners are working with a larger renovation after purchase. If you are doing a complete gut job, we recommend keeping it simple and neutral.
There are a lot of trends in kitchen and bathrooms right now. If you are looking to sell your home, the large subway tiles are still going strong, along with bright colors, gold accents and an open floor plan. For those who are looking to hold onto the space for years down the road, choosing white in tile work, cabinetry and wall color is a safe place to start. Tenants may change the wall color over time, so keep it nice and neutral as you begin your marketing to rent it.
As for appliance options, there is no need to pay for the upgraded features. You will want to stick with brand names that are reliable and easy to repair. For example, some of these newer products, like front loading washer/dryer, are developing longer term issues like “mold growth” that can become problematic if the tenant is not properly caring for the systems.
Clean lines and a neutral palette allow for decorative touches to make a statement in this Old Town End Townhome.
Keep it simple and keep it clean. Some projects can be completed on your own, especially, paint, light fixture or mirror replacement. If you are looking to retile, paint cabinetry, or do any significant electrical or plumbing work, please hire a professional. Future inspectors can pick up on homeowner work and could put you in a position where you would need to redo the entire project. So, doing it right the first time is always the way to go!
As for design, pick fixtures and tiles that are not the focal point of the entire project. You can use fun art, paint and accessories as features and come at a much lower cost when the next trend comes to town. Enjoy your new space and never hesitate to ask a professional to assist in your decision making!
If you would like a question answered in our weekly column or to set up an appointment with one of our Associates, please email: [email protected] or call 703-549-9292.
McEnearney Associates Realtors®, 109 S. Pitt Street, Alexandria, VA 22314. www.McEnearney.com Equal Housing Opportunity. #WeAreAlexandria
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If you had a chance to enhance a child’s future with a time commitment of less than 2 hours a week, how would you respond? You have that opportunity right now to join over 200 Alexandrians as a reading tutor volunteer with the Alexandria Tutoring Consortium (ATC).
ATC tutors work with one child in kindergarten, first, or second grade in Alexandria public schools who need extra help with reading. Tutors meet with their Book Buddy 1-2 times each week for 30 minutes October-May at school, during school hours. Many struggling readers only receive one-on-one instruction through this program, and it makes all the difference. Last year, ATC served 195 children, of whom 82% ended the year reading on grade level and 96% made substantial reading gains. But the need is great, and we are still seeing learning lags from the pandemic.
This year, ATC plans to significantly increase the size of the program to reach over 250 students and to serve every elementary school in Alexandria. This is very exciting news, but we will only succeed if we can recruit more tutors. ATC trains you, matches you with a child, and provides ongoing lesson materials and support.
If you have been thinking about buying your first home or haven’t owned one in the last three years, THIS IS FOR YOU!
In the DMV area, it can be difficult to save the downpayment necessary for you to get into your own home. We have a solution. The Funder’s Summit!
We have assembled a summit with different municipalities to tell you how to access their funds for your home purchase.
Mark your calendars and join us for the Family Fun Fall Fest on Saturday, October 7, 2023, from 11am – 2pm!
This FREE in-person event will be held at the Shoppes at Foxchase, located at 4641 Duke St, Alexandria, VA