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Old 05-16-2010, 05:21 PM
 
357 posts, read 988,247 times
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I would love to hear from anyone who has gone through a major remodel recently. More specifically, anyone who has added a second floor to a ranch style home.

I'd like to know how much space you added, what type of rooms (bedrooms, gameroom, bathroom, etc.) What was your experience like regarding the time it took, the inconvenience, etc.?

We are considering adding on to our ranch style home or moving if it isn't going to be beneficial.

Any opinions/advice/comments would be appreciated.
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Old 05-20-2010, 12:08 AM
 
357 posts, read 988,247 times
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Anyone with experience in remodeling? Your help would be much appreciated.
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Old 05-21-2010, 01:39 AM
 
Location: So California
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If youve got the right neighborhood that can sustain the cost of remodeling/addition then financially it can make sense. It does not make sense in much of the suburbs to add on substantially because you can not get your money out. In more established or coveted areas it can make a lot of sense. And in many cases the investment will be a good one.
As far as living in the house, its possible, but you must be ready for major disruption, dirt, dust, debris, possible rain intrustion, workers in the home all day and sometimes on Saturdays. Taking off a roof and adding a second floor would be near impossible to live in. There is no way to keep the weather out in that case.
As far as design and what to do with the space. That is a personal thing. You need to consider your own needs and what makes sense in regard to re-sale. Bedrooms/Bathrooms are always good, then entertaining space. On the first floor the number one areas to renovate are kitchens/baths and then living spaces.
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Old 05-21-2010, 09:40 PM
 
Location: Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
2,305 posts, read 6,762,830 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mommy24kids View Post
I would love to hear from anyone who has gone through a major remodel recently. More specifically, anyone who has added a second floor to a ranch style home.

I'd like to know how much space you added, what type of rooms (bedrooms, gameroom, bathroom, etc.) What was your experience like regarding the time it took, the inconvenience, etc.?

We are considering adding on to our ranch style home or moving if it isn't going to be beneficial.

Any opinions/advice/comments would be appreciated.
I'll answer strictly from a technical standpoint. Homes are generally built without thought for major expansions upwards. By that I mean the first floor framing is usually not in place to handle the additional loads from a second floor addition. Also, placing a second floor can become expensive if the first floor layout is not conducive to adding potentially needed load bearing walls. The first thing I would do, before spending any further effort or money in any other area, is to consult with a licensed Architect/Engineer. They can perform an initial consultation and review the home to possibly determine what steps would be needed to go upwards for another floor. From there you can obtain more accurate estimates what it would cost and if it is cost effective in relation to selling and buying another home instead.
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Old 05-22-2010, 10:19 AM
 
32,517 posts, read 50,996,385 times
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totally agree with the suggestion to get architect or engineer's informed opinion and that most single story homes do not have foundation to support extensive second floor additions...

that being said--
I think in this market adding a second floor to give yourself more room is fraught with complications--

in most neighborhoods you will not see a financial reward for doing that--NO MATTER where the house is located...even in more expensive neighborhoods because homes are normally built within the min/max sq ft of the original subdivision design--adding a second floor with significant sq ft is going to put that house above the original allowance for the neighborhood--
that means your total sq ft at market price will put your renovated home well above what the comps are for the neighborhood...
people shopping for a home won't want to pay that premium to live there among homes that are smaller/lower priced...
for that price/sq ft they will be looking in neighborhoods where those are the NORM not above the average as your house would be...

and frankly from the homes I saw when I was looking for home several years ago--
there were homes where people added a game room and maybe a bath or bedroom above the garage or to different part of the house--
most of them had the staircase added in awkward location,
they failed to really integrate the design with the exterior of the house that well,
and because they were trying to keep their costs down, the addition looked like what it was--a "cheap" afterthought...
most of the time the renovation really hurt the appeal of the home and was a turn-off--at least to us...

I think that likely was because they got a contractor to do it--vs having an architect do a design first--because that is additional cost...

the first thing I would do is drive through your neighborhood and see how many houses have second floors--
how many homes have added them as additions vs as original--and you can usually tell simply because if it was a tract development, there will be several with the same exterior/floorplan...

if just a few have the additional floors then I think it is a bad idea just from law of averages...
talk to a realtor who has experience in your area--that person is probably the best source of info on if it would be financially viable to do before you go to architect...

you don't want to spend so much money doing an addition that will hurt your resale value
we went through the same thought process--considered adding bedroom/bath to our vaulted attic space two different times--and it was just not a good choice for us without extensive renovations and would have priced our home above the market value in our neighborhood...
we moved...
we did however renovate our house (kitchen/baths especially) after we moved out and when we thought we would be putting it on the market--
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Old 05-22-2010, 10:52 AM
 
357 posts, read 988,247 times
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I appreciate everyone's input.

I think having an architect take a look would be the best idea as well if we were to add a second floor. However, after careful thought and considering my neighborhood, it would not be a good idea at all to add a second floor. There are a few homes in my neighborhood that have a second floor - not additions. However, I don't think it's enough to justify us making that much of an improvement. We would not get much of a return when we sell the home.

We recently renovated a secondary bathroom to a very high end bathroom. It looks great and will definately help to sell the home if we put it on the market. I'm thinking that our best bet for now would be to continue with those kinds of upgrades, especially in the kitchen, as opposed to adding any square footage to the home.

We've been in our home for 14 years and we owe very little. Our mortage is beyond comfortable. That's what makes moving such a hard decision. I like having the additional income that we have to be able to send our children on vacations, to summer camps, participate in the extra-curricular activities of their choice etc. If we just had one more bedroom and or one more bathroom, I wouldn't consider moving at all.

We'll stay put, continue making upgrades to the house and revisit our situation again next Spring.
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Old 05-22-2010, 12:45 PM
 
Location: Austin, TX
16,784 posts, read 43,767,228 times
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I am an architect, in Austin, and have done several home additions and remodels in the last couple of years. I agree with most of what has been said here. However, adding one bedroom and bathroom over a space such as a garage or car port, would probably not be all that disruptive or difficult to do. The moderate increase in space would probably not put your house too far out of the range of others in the area.

It could be worth it to you economically to be able to stay in your current home. Interest rates for home improvements are at record lows right now.

I'm sure you could find a local architect eager to do the work, as business is slow these days. The same is true for contractors and construction prices.
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Old 05-22-2010, 04:53 PM
 
32,517 posts, read 50,996,385 times
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business may be slow but that does not automatically mean that prices are low...
you have to find a good contractor with a lull--and that does not necessarily mean he will quote you a bargain basement price...
the guy we used stays busy--he gave us a good price but not necessarily one that was cheap
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Old 05-06-2011, 05:37 PM
 
32,517 posts, read 50,996,385 times
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this is not Craigs List and not a site to post ads
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