Maybe you thought about buying a new house, looked around some, found nothing you liked, and decided to stay put. Now you are thinking about updating your home to make it just right. Here are some great ideas from realtor.com, with the current pandemic in mind:

Upgrade your outdoor space

Most of us are suffering from an acute case of cabin fever these days. It's little wonder that outdoor space has become more important than ever to prospective buyers.
"Even pools are becoming more popular in areas where they weren't before," says Bill Walker, chief operating officer of Kukun, a web resource for home improvements.



That doesn't mean you need to splurge on a new in-ground pool; even a minor landscaping refresh can make a big difference and increase curb appeal. Depending on your budget and your neighborhood, you might also consider adding an in-ground fire pit or outdoor kitchen to maximize your outdoor space.



You can also "get a low-cost outdoor heater and area rug to use the space as an outdoor living room," says Francie Malina, a real estate agent in New York's Westchester County



Create a functional home office or classroom

Many workers aren't heading back to the office until 2021 or even later, which means home office space is at a premium, along with space for kids to log in to their virtual classrooms.
"People need a dedicated space for multiple people to be able to be on calls at the same time," says Walker, who currently works at home alongside his wife, and his kids attending school virtually. "It definitely creates challenges when we all need to be on calls and need space to work.



"Using a guest bedroom as a home office or classroom is a good idea," Walker says. Use versatile furniture pieces - for example, a sleeper sofa.  Most of us host guests in our guest rooms for less than a month per year, and probably even less during the pandemic.



Add separation of space

Since the pandemic, open floor plans are not proving to be functional and may be on the way out.  "Open floor plans are losing a bit of luster," Malina says. "Homeowners are looking for distinct spaces for family members to work or study."  
If your space isn't well-segmented, you may want to create separate spaces by adding barn doors or pocket doors -- or even room dividers for a quick and easy solution.



Having distinct rooms helps to minimize volume from other people's activities, and can also create a different feeling in each part of the house.



"As people are spending more time at home, they want rooms to feel like different environments so they don't feel stuck inside," Walker says.




Add space for a home gym

Many people are forgoing the gym during the pandemic, preferring to work up a sweat from home to minimize risks of coronavirus transmission. That means people are looking for space to house gym equipment, from yoga mats to treadmills and stationary bikes.Your home may not have the space for a fully equipped home gym, but you can still carve out a corner for your Peloton and weights.


Give your in-law suite a makeoverIf you have a basement, an in-law suite is great for multigenerational households, or people looking for a potential source of rental income. 

"With people bringing elderly family members home, [additional dwelling units] are a good option, especially if there is a kitchen and bathroom," Walker says. "Even if this space isn't used for personal reasons, it can be an investment property.




~~Spruce up the laundry room

Concerns about cleanliness and hygiene have been at an all-time high during the pandemic, which means "laundry rooms are more important than pre-COVID," Malina says.People are doing laundry more often after running errands, and many of us have become more diligent about washing our bed linens. Plus, who couldn't use more room for ironing, folding, and hang-drying clothes?

"Having a dedicated space to do laundry is a wonderful luxury, and buyers often want the space to be beautiful like the rest of their homes," Malina says.

Meet with and Enhance Floors Design Consultant and learn more smart ways to make your dream home a reality.

What's New At Enhance

You already know that luxury vinyl wood-look planks have been the "it" floor for years.  Tile and stone looks in luxury vinyl are now super popular as well. These floors are waterproof, so they are perfect for kitchens, bathrooms, and sunrooms. LVT is not cold, hard and loud, does not need grout, and comes in at a lower price point than real tile and stone.   Be sure you take a look at COREtec Stone, Armstrong Alterna and Alterna Reserve, and Pergo Tile Options. Come in and learn more about these great looking floors today.

Design Tip       

Trick or treating will be very different this year. Many homeowners are creating outdoor displays using  hay bales, pumpkins, skeletons, scarecrows. Google "outdoor Halloween displays" for even more ideas. 
 

Here's a fun and safe family event: a Halloween scavenger hunt through the neighborhood.  Give children a list of things to look for while looking at Halloween decorations from a distance. This can be done during the day (no darkness required!) or by car. You can then have a few treats ready for the kids when they get back to the house with their completed lists.

How Much Does It Cost

We have a client that finally (her words) finished her basement. She has it set up as a big great room, two guest bedrooms, and a full bath. She chose a wood look LVP for the flooring. We installed 1060 sq. ft. for just shy of $9000. We had to do a good bit of floor prep and levelling on this installation. (Basements slabs are notorious for not being smooth and flat.) No worries, we know what needs to be done to get the subfloor ready for your new floor.  

I Was FLOORED By Enhance

Julie in Atlanta writes "I love my carpet! I give Enhance an A+. We were pleased. All of their workers were very professional, and we had no problems." Thank you, Julie. You were a pleasure to work with.  Enjoy your new carpet!