Joyful House exterior by Mihaly Slocombe

Renovation hacks: Forever home vs. investment home

In Features, Spaces, Stories by Nicole Fuge

by Jenny Vanderhoek

So recently we looked at Really useful renovation tips mamas need to know, and now that you’ve set your budget and sought professional advice, it’s time to make a decision about whether you’re renovating your forever home, or simply renovating an investment property/five-year home.

Here are a number of renovation hacks you need to take into account to ensure you get the best return on your investment property or create the home of your dreams that you’ll want to live in for years to come.

Joyful House yellow living area

The open-plan layout and happy-inducing colour palette of this abode has forever home written all over it.


1. Make it family friendly

If you’re planning on starting a family sometime in the future, it’s important your home renovations are family friendly. For example, you don’t want a home that’s filled with stairs because trust me, baby gates are a massive pain and the less stairs you have, the better.

2. Functionality is key

Functionality is vital, so for example, try and have all your bedrooms on the same level. You don’t want to be running up and down the stairs at 3am when your baby needs you.

3. Home is where the kitchen is

Your kitchen and living areas are the heart of your home, so it’s worthwhile spending a little extra cash on good-quality kitchen benchtops and appliances that will last and grow with your family.

Joyful House yellow home office

A light and airy space, we could imagine spending all day in this welcoming home office.

4. It’s not the end of the world if you go over budget

While sticking to a budget is important, it’s also important to know when building your forever home, going over budget is ok. After all, what you’re building is going to last you for at least the next 10 years.


1. Talk to a real estate agent

If you plan on flipping a home for profit or selling an investment property within 5 years, a real estate agent should be your first point of contact. Sometimes it may not be worth renovating your home as it won’t bring you in any extra money when you sell.

2. Don’t fall into the trap of renovation trends

Be mindful of what’s trendy because what’s in fashion today, might not be tomorrow. Also, the trendier options are the most expensive, with no real return. That’s why it’s important to renovate to what the majority will love, so think whites, creams, greys and accents of blacks.

Joyful House dining and lounge area

Whether you’re working on a forever home or investment property, one thing always rings true: You need to invest in creating great living areas.

3. Spend your dollar on functional living spaces

When renovating your investment/five-year home, think about what’s going to sell best. The majority of people look for beautiful, functional living spaces, so it’s a good idea to spend your dollar there.

4. Keep to your budget

Remember: everything you put into renovating your investment/five-year home needs to be returned when you sell, so stay on budget or you’ll be losing out.

I hope these home renovation hacks help make your next home renovation experience the breeziest one yet.

Images: Joyful House by Mihaly Slocombe. Photographer Tatjana Plitt. With courtesy of Dulux Colour Awards 2018.

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