Posted by: Timothy Ellis (The Tim)

Tim Ellis is the founder of Seattle Bubble. His background in engineering and computer / internet technology, a fondness of data-based analysis of problems, and an addiction to spreadsheets all influence his perspective on the Seattle-area real estate market.

13 responses to “Poll: Which remodel would you do first?”

  1. Blurtman

    Binge versus purge.

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  2. Eleua

    Bathroom sinks are inversely proportional to divorce lawyer utility.

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  3. Peter Witting

    I haven’t done a remodel before, so I’m thinking that a bathroom is a better initiation to the process than a full-fledged kitchen (?).

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  4. whatsmyname

    This seems like a strange question for a bubble blog. I recommend not to do either. It would almost certainly be a violation of your lease.

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  5. softwarengineer

    My Idiot Neighbor Put $100-200K into His $100K Unit

    He did a lot of the labor himself, but still….he better not sell it soon, at best, I see him getting maybe 10 cents on the dollar return, if he sells at the best time in years, NOW.

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  6. David Losh

    Oh what the heck. I’m waiting for my laborers to get here to demo for a couple of projects around the house. We chose to do outdoor living areas, and if I have my way they will be covered from the rain, but it isn’t really required. We already have a large covered area out doors.

    In terms of projects I would want to be clear that remodel projects add to salability rather than having a value. So a good kitchen will sell, and bad kitchen can cost you money in a sale.

    Bathrooms are really pretty easy. People spend a lot on them, but it isn’t like you’re going to be hanging out where you deposit bodily waste.

    The kitchen is more of a challenge because you live there. You want open space, a place to gather, a place that is easy to maneuver. The other thing is that you want it to have a universal appeal.

    The bottom line is you can tile a bathroom, as is where is, and get more bang for your buck.

    A kitchen takes planning, and design. You also want the nice appliances, great tile, or slab, and you can spend that money knowing some one will buy it. Also stay main stream, nothing too kitchy, or special.

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  7. David Losh

    RE: whatsmyname @ 4

    What has happened to bubble blogs is the wealth of information they provide for those who are considering a home purchase.

    There are a lot of warnings in there, but on this particular blog you have Tim Ellis who did actually buy, and in my opinion, he bought well, and with the right attitude.

    I would have never thought his purchase was wise, but it has turned around very well. He has value, with the stated goal of paying the property off.

    Providing information is a good thing. This particular post is timely, because a lot of people are in the process of remodeling with the intention to sell.

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  8. Mike

    RE: Peter Witting @ 3 – Agree – Kitchen is the more important room and therefore, unless you are flipping to try and get out, it goes last. Assuming of course both are serviceable and you’re just looking to do a basic update.

    We need to do both in our house – eventually. We figure the Bath is a lower risk proposition as a learning curve and an easier way to also test out a contractor since we’ll still have another to use while the work is being done.

    Also agree with David in 6 sort of. The Kitchen is where you are going to spend a lot more time living so if you are looking to stay put, but haven’t been in the home for a long time yet, it is better to live with a mediocre kitchen until you really get a sense for how it fits with the rest of the house and your needs. A bath on the other hand is much more likely to just be a mostly cosmetic facelift with a pretty fixed size and layout for the toilet, sink and bath. Kitchen will likely open to the outside, connect to other rooms inside, and has more appliances involved so really need a better sense of what you really want on that before diving in.

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  9. Lo Ball Jones

    I’d skip the remodel, keep the money, and sell now before the whole she-bang collapses (shootings on Eastlake…welcome to SeaTroit).

    Here’s what $80,000 gets you in New Bremen, OH

    Bedrooms:4 beds
    Bathrooms:1.5 baths
    Single Family:2,110 sq ft
    Lot:2,178 sq f

    http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/231-N-Franklin-St-New-Bremen-OH-45869/51303872_zpid/

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  10. Peter Witting

    RE: Lo Ball Jones @ 9

    Of course, you could just go full-Detroit for $15,500

    http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/9115-Sorrento-St-Detroit-MI-48228/88754550_zpid/

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  11. Erik

    I would look at both the bathroom and kitchen and do whichever is cheapest and would give me the most for my money. I did a rustoleum restoration kit on my kitchen cabinets which turned out awesome. Take a look. It cost me $100 and lots of work. Well, maybe closer to $300 after hardware and any materials needed, but still. That is super cheap compared to buying new cabinets for $10k. Major upgrade for cheap.

    http://seattle.craigslist.org/est/apa/3952144062.html

    That top cross beam was done in sheet rock, but looked terrible. I wrapped it in beam board and put trim on the joints. Then I used the rustoleum restoration kit on it and it looks like cherry. This was done a year ago and still looks the great.

    They are particle board and they were painted a grayish blue. I painted them and even put in the wood grain texture look. Turned out great.

    Both my bathrooms have pedestal sinks, but they need a vanity in my opinion. The showers need to be pulled out and tile put in. I would guess to do something nice, I’d need to spend $4000, which I don’t have.

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  12. Erik

    RE: Lo Ball Jones @ 9
    Or you could buy a mcmansion in marysville like SWE for cheap. He will be rolling on the ground in his mcmansion laughing at all the weak minded pundits while everyone else overpaid.

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  13. Lo Ball Jones

    RE: Peter Witting @ 10

    Some may laugh…but this looks like a good working class neighborhood:

    http://www.city-data.com/neighborhood/Warrendale-Detroit-MI.html

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