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Cost-Saving Tips For Your Bathroom Renovation

Cost-Saving Tips For Your Bathroom Renovation

Bathrooms are one of the most popular renovation spots under normal circumstances. With everyone spending so much time at home, updating and upgrading their space, adding value, and also making it more conducive for quarantining, it’s more popular than ever. 

But, it can be extremely expensive. According to HomeAdvisor, “The average bathroom remodel costs $10,528. Most homeowners spend between $6,016 and $15,044. On a large or master bath, you could spend $25,000 or more.”

But you can do it on a budget. Here’s how.

Watch your footprint

You may be envisioning a large, lavish bathroom, but do you have as large, lavish budget? You can keep costs down by going with a smaller footprint. Less square footage means less materials to purchase means less money going out the door. A larger bathroom will likely need a larger vanity, which can be pricier. Additional boxed of flooring, tile, and any other materials you need will also cost you more. Keeping it small may also mean you can find leftover materials at a steep discount. 

Buy what’s on sale

When you’re trying to do your bathroom on a budget, an open mind is your best tool. The Carrera marble you have your heart set on might be a huge budget-buster, but you can approximate the look with the Carrera-look porcelain tile that’s on sale. 

Or, maybe, you end up with something else altogether because you didn’t anticipate that great subway tile on clearance. Material costs can cause your bottom line to swell, but you can keep your budget in line by making smart purchases.

Keep your plumbing where it is

If you can renovate your bathroom without moving the toilet, shower/bath, or sink, you’ll save a lot of mony—and hassle. “The cost to move a toilet or sinks can be $2,500-$3,500 per fixture,” said Torrance, CA-based Bay Cities Construction. “Plumbing can be a significant cost factor in a remodel when a bathroom floor plan is altered. The toilet is the most expensive to move. Connecting the toilet to the existing sewer line can be a bit tricky for your plumber. The sewer-line depends on a slope. The sewer line pipes keep a specific slope to drain well. Another layer of complexity exists if the house is built on a concrete slab versus a raised foundation. Houses with a concrete slab foundation require concrete cutting to relocate new pipes. This can be more time consuming than a house with a raised foundation.”

Go prefab

If you need a custom vanity, your costs can climb into the thousands. But with so many prefab options available, you may not need to consider that type of expense. 

Check the big box stores

Holiday sales several times a year can mean tremendous savings on everything from vanities to bathtubs to faucets.

Don’t be afraid to DIY

When it comes to bathroom vanities, one of the best deals you’ll find will likely be on unfinished products. We found this unfinished, 60-inch double, shaker-style vanity for under $300. A similar white-painted vanity was more than $500 from the same company, so painting it yourself is a good way to save some cash. 

Be on the lookout in your neighborhood

There have been workmen at the house around the corner that just sold. And there’s a trash bin in the driveway of the one across the street. That might mean people around you are renovating. And it’s also possible that they’re getting rid of some stuff you’d be happy to have in your home. You know what they say about one man’s trash…

Check Amazon 

Yes, the same place you buy your underwear and your light bulbs may also be a great source for bathroom items. We found this Delta tub and faucet marked down from $124 to $48 and this Westinghouse brushed nickel, three-light fixture on sale from $78 to $53. 

Think outside of the box

That antique dresser that’s collecting dust in the garage or attic might make a gorgeous vanity, and it may even be something you can do yourself


Go ahead and enter “vanity” or “clawfoot tub” into the search field of your local Craigslist. You may find nothing, or you may find all manner of cool stuff. Just be sure to abide by some Craigslist best practices to keep yourself, and your money, safe.  

Check surplus stores

If you don’t know where one is, Google is your friend. These warehouses have some great bulk deals as well as small-scale bargains you won’t find elsewhere. 

These are the Renovations that Pay Off When Selling

These are the Renovations that Pay Off When Selling

If you’re getting ready to sell your own Fort Collins or Loveland home and are deciding which renovation projects to take on, you may be having a hard time figuring out what’s worth it and what’s not —some renovations are worth more than others, but it can be hard to tell since the potential buyers’ personal preference will come into play as well.

Homeownership is great in a lot of ways—you get your own space that you can customize as you please, you can have as many people over as you want, you can have pets without paying extra fees, you get space to fit more belongings, etc. But homeownership can also be a big burden—you are responsible for any and all necessary repairs, you have to buy tools and equipment to help with maintenance for things like the lawn, you have to pay the cost of all utilities, and so on.

Owning a home has both its pros and cons but even despite the pros, after a while, many people find themselves needing to move. Whether it be because the home is too small, it’s time for an upgrade, there’s a new job is in another location, it’s not worth the cost of maintaining, or it’s simply a good market and the right time to sell, there are a number of reasons that homeowners part ways with their houses. No matter the reason, though, many want to get the most out of it that they can, and that often means making updates and/or doing renovations to boost the value of their home before it goes on the market.

Luckily, there are a few renovations that will generally pay off, and a few that generally don’t. If you’re considering renovations for your house, here are the ones you should move forward with and the ones you should avoid:

Renos That Will Make You Money


If you’re considering remodeling your kitchen before listing your home for sale, stop considering and start doing. While you don’t need to do a full-on kitchen remodel, doing minor upgrades and updates to make it look current and fresh will have a positive impact on your home’s overall value, helping you get more bang for your buck.

Energy Savings

Doing renovations or upgrades that result in energy savings is a good idea when you’re planning to sell your home. Things like replacing insulation, upgrading windows, replacing appliances, etc. will add value to your home and help you get more money out of it when you go to sell it to new owners.


Curb appeal is big for many buyers, and if you have old, outdated, faded siding that you’re considering replacing, you should. New siding can give your house a totally fresh new look and will attract more buyers than you might think.

Front Door

Again, curb appeal has a big impact on buyers and the front door plays a big role in that for such a seemingly small aspect of the house. Replacing the front door is relatively cheap, easy to do, and will have a positive impact on your home’s value, helping you recoup your costs and get more out of your house, whatever the reason you’re planning to sell.


If you have an unfinished basement or a basement that needs some upgrades, then doing those before you list your house on the market is a great way to go. While some people love the potential of unfinished space, many would prefer a space that has potential but is finished so that they can move in, customize it, and start using it right away.

Renos That Aren’t Worth What They Cost


You might want to consider adding a fresh coat of paint, but in general, a full bathroom remodel or the addition of a bathroom isn’t worth what it costs. The average ROI for a bathroom addition is only about 56 percent, meaning that you won’t be able to recoup much at the time of resell.


Having a deck is great and gives you the chance to get outside and enjoy the summer evenings. It’s not something buyers are really looking for, though, so if you’re considering adding a deck as a way to add value, you may want to think twice about it. The money you would spend on the deck could be put towards a more valuable renovation instead.

Master Suite

Everyone seems to think that everyone wants a luxurious master suite, and while that may be true to a degree, when it comes down to it, people would rather pay a good price for a house they like than pay a lot more for just a master suite. On average, adding a master suite costs over $100,000 and only results in a 64 percent ROI, so it’s not a renovation that’s worth it if you want to add resell value to your home.

In Conclusion 

When it comes time to sell your home, there are a number of renovations that you might want to consider doing in order to increase its value and get more money when it’s time to close. Not all renovations are worth the cost, though, so although you may want to remodel the kitchen a bit, adding a bathroom or deck won’t add the same value and isn’t worth the money or time.

Which renovations are you considering doing before you sell your Fort Collins or Loveland home?

Message me if your thinking about selling a Fort Collins or Loveland home at m.me/EdPowersRealEstate

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Ed Powers Real Estate 970-690-3113 ed@EdPowersRealEstate.com www.EdPowersRealEstate.com

Why Would I Put Money into a House I am Selling

Why Would I Put Money into a House I am Selling

I would say this is the most frequently occurring questions professional stagers field every day! On the surface you can certainly understand why the question is raised repeatedly. There are many reasons to support the process of staging a property prior to bringing it to the public for review. Let’s look at a few of them.

Who is Buying?

Whether you know, or believe it, it is true; the buyer will determine IF your house will sell, when it will sell and for what price. You can have your hopes, wants and dreams but ultimately the power lies with the buyer.  A great Staging professional is knowledgeable about which demographic is most likely to purchase your property and will make recommendations with that in mind. The largest property buying demographic today are Millennials. The younger members of this tribe may still favor renting, however once they hit their 30’s and begin to settle down they want their version of a great house.

What they want is move in ready. Why? Pressing student debt is already a worry, they scrape together as much as possible for the down payment and simply don’t have extra cashflow to invest in “fixing-up” the things you couldn’t be bothered to do. The other factor to consider is this group of people do not want to be “DIY weekend warriors”; they want to have fun on the weekends! Also, they don’t have the skills to do the work- and they are not interested in learning how to do it!

You may have finished with this property but to them it is their new home. They want it to look and feel like it from the outset. In fact, research shows they want the feel of new so much most of them are willing to pay more money to get it. What that means to you is this, if you choose to bring your property onto the market “as-is” you risk a) being on the market longer than you want or b) have offers for less than you expect.

Staging is the only service for selling property that has measurable value

Whether the market is hot, cold or indifferent, staging is a powerful marketing tool which should never be discounted because of the outlay of money. If you want to maximize your ROI, why would you not do for your house, what you would do if you were selling anything else! Your car for instance? Wouldn’t you clean, fix and polish it to make it feel new?

The largest investment most people ever make is in real estate. When selling, they want the most money possible in the shortest time for no effort and no money!?? Really who does that? 97% of prospective buyers look on the internet first, which means you need amazing photos to capture interest, to get on the MUST-SEE list. Don’t play equity jeopardy™ with your investment!  Your competition are new houses- yours must look and feel like one too!

Failure to do so will have a millennial moving on. 

Message me if your thinking about selling a Fort Collins or Loveland home at m.me/EdPowersRealEstate

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Ed Powers Real Estate 970-690-3113 ed@EdPowersRealEstate.com www.EdPowersRealEstate.com

How Lenders Set Mortgage Rates

Ever wonder how mortgage lenders set interest rates for their loan programs each and every business day? Wonder why some lenders quote the exact same rate for the exact same program? Maybe why one lender is lower than others? Here’s some insight on how mortgage lenders set their rates each day.

First, note that mortgage lenders set their rates on the same basic set of indices. There are some exceptions, primarily mortgage lenders who issue their own loan programs that intend to keep the loans internally and collect interest on the loan rather than selling the note.

Adjustable rate mortgages and fixed rate mortgages are priced a bit differently. An adjustable rate mortgage, or ARM, is tied to a specific, universally tradeable index, such as the 1-Year Constant Maturity Treasury. Each morning, the “secondary” departments of these mortgage companies look up the current price of an ARM index and then add a margin to it. If for example the index came in at 1.75% and the margin was set at 2.00%, the new rate for that specific program would come in at 3.75% and stay there until the next adjustment.

Fixed rate mortgages, at least for most of them, are set in another manner but also use a specific index. Currently, the index used for most fixed rate conforming loans is the Universal Mortgage Backed Security, or UMBS. This is the index lenders use when setting fixed mortgage rates scheduled to be sold to either Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

Okay, so if most lenders use the same index when setting fixed rates, why are they sometimes different? That can depend upon different factors. Lenders compete for mortgage business in different ways, but they all want to compete based upon a competitive rate. The rate doesn’t always have to be the lowest rate but should be in the ballpark. 

Maybe a customer has a long-lasting banking relationship with a bank and also has quite of bit of cash sitting in different checking and savings accounts. That customer might be offered an extremely competitive rate based upon loyalty of the customer as well as the amount of assets the bank holds. The rate in this instance doesn’t have to be the lowest because the borrower is focused more on trust and relationships than the rock-bottom rate.

On the flip side, for mortgage companies that don’t have such an established relationship, rates take on a more serious note. A mortgage company with less media exposure compared to established banks might need to entice a potential borrower with some very competitive mortgage rates. But again, they set their prices on the same set of indices. 

Sometimes a mortgage lender has taken an aggressive approach and priced their loans very low and suddenly their pipeline is full. They’re overbooked and overworked. Their marketing campaign is working but now their loan processing times have slowed to a crawl. It’s not unheard of for a mortgage company to raise rates temporarily to turn off the spigot. It happens. Lenders certainly want to make a profit, otherwise the mortgage market would dry up, but they want to be smart about it. 

Message me if your thinking about buying a Fort Collins or Loveland home at m.me/EdPowersRealEstate

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Ed Powers Real Estate 970-690-3113 ed@EdPowersRealEstate.com www.EdPowersRealEstate.com

Maybe Quartz Counters Are The Answer For Your Kitchen

Has the tide finally turned on granite? In the last few years, granite has continued to be a popular choice for kitchen counters, but has lost ground to quartz, which is now the go-to for homebuyers and renovators, not to mention design shows and flippers. If you’re getting ready to redo your kitchen or are building a new home, here are all the reasons to swaddle your counters in quartz.

1. Endless options

Whether you’re looking for something super sleek or want to replicate the look of natural stone without the maintenance, you can find it in quartz.

“One of the main reasons quartz has exploded in popularity is due to appearance,” said HGTV. “Quartz has the look of stone while also allowing homeowners to customize the design. While granite offers many options in terms of appearance, you may have to search for the right piece that matches your color scheme. With quartz, the selection process is much easier.”

2. May be better for larger surfaces

The prevailing trend in kitchens today is an open kitchen with a large island. But large slabs of granite to cover an entire surface in one piece are hard to come by, sometimes even nonexistent depending on the size, and are expensive if they are found. More likely, more than one granite slab will need to be used for a large island or expansive countertops. Because quartz is engineered, it can be created in larger slabs. And if more than one slab is needed, seaming them together looks, well, seamless because there is no need to carefully color match natural pieces together as you would do with granite.

3. Easy maintenance

Granite needs to be resealed one a year, which is no big deal for most people. But the daily care required of granite can push them toward toward a solid surface like quartz. “With quartz, cleaning the counter is easy. The quartz washes off with soap and water and looks as good as new. You don’t have to use special bacteria-preventing soaps,” said Leeza Surfaces.

4. No staining

A main consideration for many people when choosing countertops is warding off stains. Juice, wine, or other food and drinks can permanently stain granite. According to HGTV, “Some oils and acids can stain” as well.

5. Scratches and burns

Granite can also scratch and burn, ruining the look. Quartz is scratch resistant and able to handle hot pots without burning or discoloring, although it’s not recommended you put anything super hot directly down on either surface.

6. Cost

Granite can be less expensive than quartz depending on the grade of the stone, but, when it comes to exotic granite, “Quartz is less expensive,” said Leeza Surfaces.

7. Eco-friendliness

“The only way granite ends up in your kitchen is if it’s quarried and that uses a lot of energy. If you opt for a high-end slab from Italy, for example, there will be considerable transportation involved. Try using indigenous stone when possible or visit salvage shops for pieces that can be cut to fit your needs,” said HGTV. “Since quartz is engineered, it can be more environmentally-friendly than granite if you use regionally manufactured stone and local fabricators. This cuts down on the distance the material needs to be transported.”

If that’s not enough to convince you, maybe these quartz kitchens will do the trick.

Message me if your thinking about selling your Fort Collins or Loveland home at m.me/EdPowersRealEstate

Ed Powers Real Estate 970-690-3113 ed@EdPowersRealEstate.com www.EdPowersRealEstate.com