Many homeowners don’t buy their dream home—they create it from the house they’re already living in. Through a major remodel, they can get all the features they always wanted. These renovations often involve changing the floor plan or adding on rooms.

An Open Floor Plan

Today’s lifestyle doesn’t fit well with the design of older homes, which are usually divided into separate small rooms. Instead, contemporary homes combine living, dining, and kitchen spaces for a functional and updated open floor plan.

Remodeling older homes can present a few challenges, however. Some walls are load-bearing and can only be partially removed, or else a beam must be added. Rerouting electrical wiring and plumbing may also be necessary, especially if an island is added to the kitchen.

More Kitchen Space

Many older homes are built with small U-shaped or galley kitchens without much storage or counter space. One option is to eliminate the breakfast nook and reclaim the space for more cabinets and an island with seating. It may also be possible to add space from a closet, garage, or laundry room. 

If it’s not possible to add square footage, you can add more storage and counter space by redesigning your cabinets. Today’s upper cabinets are taller and can hold much more. Vertical dividers and pull-out drawers allow you to maximize the space available.

An Extra Bathroom

If mornings are hectic, with several family members rushing to get ready at once, an extra bathroom can make a huge difference. Even for singles or small families, an additional bathroom can be handy for guests or entertaining.

A powder room (toilet and sink) can be added in a space of 15 or 16 square feet. You may be able to convert a closet or utilize part of an existing room. A full bathroom will take up more room. Using part of a garage or basement are options, though many people will include a bathroom with a room addition.

A Backyard Pool

There’s nothing like coming home on a hot summer’s day and jumping into your own pool. A pool provides exercise and recreation for the entire family. You can teach your kids how to swim and help them learn water safety. Poolside parties are enjoyable for both kids and adults.

Whether you choose to install the pool above ground or in-ground, you can choose from a variety of sizes and shapes to fit the space available in your yard. You won’t need to worry about clearing everything out of your backyard. Concrete pump trucks can reach over obstacles on the property to start pool construction. Once the pool is finished, you can add a concrete surround or deck.

An Owner’s Suite

An owner’s suite is in high demand, but many older homes don’t have them. In a major renovation, an expanded bedroom and en suite bath are high on the priority list. People love having a private retreat from the rest of the home, especially when it’s equipped with a luxury bath and spacious, walk-in closets.

In some houses, adding an owner’s suite may require a room addition; it’s a popular trend to add an owner’s suite to the first floor. This flows nicely with an open floor plan. It’s also an advantage for empty-nesters who are planning to age in place and may not relish the idea of climbing stairs in the future.

A Bigger Garage

Homeowners want a garage big enough for the vehicles, plus storage and a workshop area. In a full home remodel, a larger garage is high on the wish list. The project can be accomplished in several ways, depending on your available space and any local ordinances you may need to meet.

A bump-out addition can give you the extra square footage for a work or hobby area or storage of a lawn tractor, snowmobile, or motorbike. You may be able to add an area in the front of your garage by using driveway space. Converting a one-car to a two-car garage may be possible if you have enough space.

A Finished Basement

A full basement gives you a blank slate for creating extra living space to meet your family’s needs. Many people want to create a home theater room or build an additional bedroom or craft room. Others want an entertainment space with a wet bar and pool table.

Before finishing a basement, check to see that your foundation is sound and there are no potential water leaks or seepage. You’ll also want to assess needs for plumbing, electricity, and lighting.

As you plan a full house remodel, you should prioritize those home features you’ve always dreamed of. This may consist of more indoor space, updated features, and a floor plan that accommodates your growing family and active lifestyle.

Check out this article for more ideas on how to renovate your kitchen!