Getting the Most Out of Your Boston Condo Renovation


Although a home improvement project is typically inspired by an owner’s desire to improve his or her living space, a proper renovation has an impact on your condo’s value and is an investment that should last as long as you live in the home.  When it comes time to sell, those invested dollars can either help or hurt your return on investment.  Here are a few tips to ensure that your investment benefits you in the long run.

Think Big AND Small

A condo renovation project is the perfect time to address all of the little details that impact the overall experience of your condo. Perhaps it’s a loose door knob or missing window latch that you’ve been meaning to fix. If you’re bringing in a contractor for a renovation, make sure that these items are on the list. Buyers will have their home inspector review these items if and when you sell, and the issues will annoy you as long as you live in the home if they go unfixed.

Designing Your Condo

When it comes to redesigning your condo, always consult a professional.  Even if you tear every page out of every design idea magazine you find, an experienced perspective is essential for a successful home remodeling project.  Haven’t we all purchased a piece of furniture that we could barely get in the door, and then realized when it finally got in the room that it didn’t fit the space? A building professional who knows the trade can provide invaluable advice to ensure that your project goes according to plan.

Successful condo remodeling in Boston is often about “less is more”.  Focus on small space ideas, storage solutions that remove clutter, and eliminating outdated technology. Looking to the future can help you avoid making building mistakes that won’t stand the test of time. For example, many homeowners are now regretting the armoires that were built for their televisions before the age of flat screens.

Budgeting for Boston Condo Renovations

Budget first. It’s important to find the right balance of investment to quality that you are able to comfortably afford. You may want a $100,000 kitchen and you may be able to afford a $100,000 kitchen, but your condo may only benefit from an $80,000 kitchen. An experienced contractor can tell you what the return on investment will be from your renovation and will guide you to get the most value out of your renovation project.

Kitchens and baths typically change the face of a space the most dramatically, and for that reason, they offer the biggest bang for the buck. Keep in mind, though, that seemingly small items like paint selection can make a big difference. For small spaces, select a monochromatic color scheme to broaden the feel of environment.  Although you may love a certain color like Robin’s Egg Blue, a more neutral pallet will have a broader appeal.

Navigating Building Rules and Regulations in Boston

There is nothing that can take the fun out of a project more than the adversity that skipping the “rules” can bring.  Condo associations, insurance companies, the building department, historic and environmental concerns all play a role in your Boston condo renovation.  Organized management of these regulations should be as important as every other part of your home renovation project, and a contractor’s experience is the best way to make sure you don’t get caught on the wrong side of the law.

Choosing the Right Contractor

There are countless contractors who do condo renovations in Boston.  So how do you choose the right contractor for your project? Start by asking around and requesting referrals from the contractors that you interview.  Do your research online to see the company’s portfolio. If the contractor cannot produce examples of similar projects that they have completed, stay away. There is no amount of savings that can make up for lack of experience, especially in a dense urban environment with complex rules and regulations like Boston. Meet with a few contractors to review your project and see if they have the personality and vision that you are looking for in a building partner.  At the end of the day, there is no one right choice. Here are a few items to look for in choosing a Boston condo contractor:

  • Someone who has experience in the type of work you are seeking.
  • Someone who has experience in your geographic area or building.
  • Someone who has good references from people you trust.
  • Someone who is professional and respects your time and project vision.
  • Someone with the creativity to accomplish your goals in the best way possible.
  • Someone who has a track record of completing work on-time and on-budget.


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