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Old 08-05-2013, 03:23 PM
2,688 posts, read 5,953,655 times
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Get what you and your family like. You're going to be in this house for at least eight years so get what you'll enjoy for eight years. And you may end up staying for longer than that. We stayed in our previous house more than twice as long as we originally anticipated, and thought for a long time that we would move after retirement but have now decided to stay here permanently.

Structural things that you can't later change, or that would be very expensive or difficult to change, are something to look at now.

Also look at things that you would like and would enjoy that can be easily rolled into your mortgage but would be harder to do if you had to come up with a big payment.

But for things like hardwood vs. carpet, colors of cabinets and countertops and appliances, etc., go with what you all like and will enjoy living with. Styles, tastes, and materials change so if you buy something you don't really like just because it's popular now, it might not be popular anymore when it's time to sell and then you'll wonder why you endured it all those years.

In any case, moving into a brand new place is a joyful feeling. Congratulations and good luck!
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Old 08-06-2013, 08:03 PM
Location: Orange Hunt Estates, W. Springfield
628 posts, read 1,724,293 times
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Originally Posted by marie5v View Post
For our house, the main things we wish we had are:

1-hardwood floors
2-finished basement (walkout would be awesome)
3-updated kitchen (countertop that is stone or other upgraded material - cabinets are less important unless the standard cabinets are smaller)

These are also the things that most affect resale value in our neighborhood.

The fireplace is pretty useless, except that it requires maintenance. The window options I would take only if the rooms are going to be dark without them. Personally, I don't care for the bump-out windows. I think a gas range is a must, but not if it's going to be very expensive. Ultimately, if you don't care, I doubt that will sell or not sell your house in 8 years, especially since it's an easy thing to swap out later. The upgraded tile just depends on what the standard tile looks like and where it's going to be. Tile is really hard to change, so if it's a big difference then I'd probably do it, but not if there is not a clear and significant difference in the overall look, and not if it's not in a really visible place. For example, we have a cheap tile in our kitchen and basement. In the basement it's just fine, but I hate it in the kitchen because it has wide white grout lines that are absolutely impossible to clean. So it just looks dirty no matter what I do.
I agree with you almost entirely. Do not get carpet; it's a filth magnet. Regarding gas cooking, an induction range is as good or better according to many. We have such a range and couldn't be happier. A note on stainless steel appliances: In addition to their faddish nature, they easily show finger smears. I know from personal experience. But if you keep up with their cleaning, they look great.
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Old 08-06-2013, 08:32 PM
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Add things you can't do yourself or have done easily. Walkout and bumpouts, gas range, brick front, fireplaces. You'll have more to choose from when it comes to flooring and counters if you do it yourself. Plus you'll get better material for a better price.
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Old 08-07-2013, 06:44 AM
Location: Annandale, VA
5,098 posts, read 4,301,114 times
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The only things you need to do NOW are to purchase things that cannot be upgraded after the house is built. That would be a bump out if available. You can't increase the footprint of a home once it it built on the cheap. After that, the priority should be:

1. Additional full bathroom
2. Hardwood floor

Appliances will NOT increase resale value, because applicancse DEPRECIATE with age. They don't increase value AND you are paying a premium by buying them from the builder. It is better to buy the LOWEST quality lighting and finishes and then changing them out over time with better items.
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Old 08-09-2013, 01:23 AM
23 posts, read 59,957 times
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Thank you for ALL your replies. Your thoughtful replies are helping us decide on the options, IF we choose to go with new construction. We are looking at the numbers, and we may be able to afford more of what we want in an existing home.

I really appreciate your responses.
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Old 08-12-2013, 03:53 PM
109 posts, read 125,939 times
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The previous posters are right. I am having a totally custom (Architecturally designed) home built in BaileysCrossroads right now. We spent most of our extra money on:

Kitchen (Added Bumpout for the cooktop, added columns on either side of the bumpout, 36 and 42" cabinets, Fancy cook top hood, double wall ovens, SS appliances...Frigidaire makes this beautiful fridge Frigidaire PRO Stainless Refrigerator & Freezer Combo FPRH19D7LF FPUH19D7LF on eBay! , Granite, etc etc)
Bathrooms Went with upgraded tile in all of them. All high grade stuff in the bathrooms
We actually spent a lot of money upgrading the outside finishes as well (Architectural shingles, cornice trim/moldings, box bay windows 6 feet wide)

We didnt finish our basement (1800 sq ft) because I can do that after they're done. I also placed the washer/dryer upstairs right next to the bedrooms. We also have a huuuuuuuge master bedroom and a 70 ft walkin closet in addition to a large master bathroom

And when we were designing our house, we definitely knew which things we could do afterwards and which ones we needed to do now. Structural items are the main ones we are doing now, things like finishing the basement can be done afterwards. We also decided to spend a lot of money on the kitchens and bathrooms as I have remodeled both before and did not want to fool around with them again. Painting I dont mind doing. Drywall is ok too. But installing cabinets, tubs, and tile I like to leave to the pros
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Old 08-12-2013, 04:57 PM
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If you choose to have any carpeting in your home, always upgrade the padding even if you don't upgrade the carpet itself. It will wear better, longer, and be more comfortable underfoot.
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Old 08-12-2013, 05:34 PM
109 posts, read 125,939 times
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Good idea Weezy
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Old 08-13-2013, 01:51 PM
Location: VA
203 posts, read 347,001 times
Reputation: 215
Must do's-
Structural upgrades are first. Laundry room on the top floor is a huge deal.
Ceiling fan pre-wires
Finished basement with walk-out (if you have never finished a basement post move-in this might not make sense)
Maple cabinets or similar upgrade
Gas stovetop
Hardwood floors

Cyclical items-
Stainless steel, not such a biggy anymore
Granite counters- especially not uba tuba
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Old 08-18-2013, 01:09 PM
Location: Northwestern VA
982 posts, read 3,101,137 times
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Originally Posted by Nova Mom View Post
Which options would you recommend on a new construction 4 bedroom single family home so as to assure a good resale value?

We currently live in an old small townhouse with below average everthing so, my family would be perfectly happy with the base model on our new home. But, we plan on moving further south in about 8 years when our youngest enters college. There are so many options, fireplaces, hardwood floors, finished basement, upgraded cabinets and countertops, gas range, bumpouts, walkout basement, paint color, upgraded tile, even optional windows in the living and family rooms etc.

Which ones should we include?

I would greatly appreciate you advise.

Thank you.
Choose options that are not easy to do yourself/have a contractor do for you....like windows, fireplaces, additional space/rooms. Paint, washer dryer, flooring you should think about this way: how much do they really cost if you're paying for them as part of your 30 year mortgage?
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