The days are notably shorter, and the weather is somewhat cooler. There are back-to-school ads everywhere, and pumpkin-spice everything is making its annual return. Much as we hate to admit it, another summer on Cape Cod is coming to a close.
If you own a second, seasonal home here, you and your family are probably focused on packing as much fun as possible into each precious remaining summer day. But if you are considering starting a large-scale renovation project of your Cape house once you return to your primary residence, we would encourage you to forgo a little fun to begin the planning process for your remodeling project while you’re still here.
Taking just a few minutes a day now to really hone in on what you need can yield years of greater enjoyment in the future.
A houseful of guests is part of what makes summer on the Cape so much fun. But sometimes it can be a bit much, can’t it? If you’re nodding your head right now, allow us to make a suggestion: Step away from the fun and sit down, preferably several times in the course of a house-filled-to-bursting weekend, and make a plan.
As morning mayhem ensues, forgo your hosting duties for a moment and step back. Watch what your family and friends are doing, and consider what changes might reduce the chaos.
Are mornings all about togetherness, or do people pop into the kitchen at their leisure? In either case, including a secondary work zone in your kitchen remodeling plans can be a game-changer. A “secondary work zone” can be as simple as a coffee bar – a countertop and cabinetry arranged along a wall away from the primary work zone – where guests can fix themselves a cup of coffee.
Not enough? Take your coffee bar to the next level by adding an under-counter refrigerator and a sink. With just these two simple additions, guests can have a bagel with cream cheese, and moms can give the kids cereal and rinse out bowls while you have the primary work zone to yourself for packing a picnic lunch for the beach or prepping the evening’s dinner.
You and your guests have all enjoyed a relaxing day at the beach and are now looking forward to a fun-filled dinner at a local restaurant. Sounds perfect, except everyone needs to shower within the hour.
The easiest, most cost-effective way of increasing the number of showers in your home is to add an outdoor. Already have one? Add another.
The next possibility is to add a full bath to your home or convert a half bath into a full bath by installing a shower. An additional bath will not only be appreciated by guests, it will increase the value of your home.
If you have a first-floor half bath, turning it into a full bath adds convenience, and carving out space for a shower may be easier than you think. Is there a closet in an adjacent room that can be sacrificed? Or can a little-used adjacent dining room be made a few feet smaller? A first-floor full bath also has aging-in-place implications. As we get older, stairs can be a challenge. A first-floor bathroom can make a world of difference in allowing you to age in your own home.
Smaller changes can transform your home in a big way, but if it simply isn’t large enough, it’s time to contemplate more drastic measures. Should that be the case, deciding what your Cape house needs while you’re at it could be crucial. When building a home addition, or finishing rough spaces such as an attic, garage or cellar, right-sizing for both the current situation and the future is always the goal.
Already have enough bedrooms and bathrooms, but there isn’t anywhere for the grandkids to run around on rainy days? Solve the problem by finishing your basement.
Have grown children who spend a week or two with you every summer with their own families? This situation can be trickier. If budget and zoning issues are a concern, creating a bunkroom in the attic can be a game-changer. In dire need of a quiet home office? How about finishing the space over your garage?
If finishing existing space simply isn’t going to suffice, it’s time to think about a home addition. As we mentioned in an earlier blog post, a two-story addition is the way to go. Whether an addition is one or two stories, it only needs one foundation and one roof. Some aspects of the plumbing and electrical systems remain relatively constant when you add a second level.
As we mentioned above, your future needs should be always considered. With that in mind, we would suggest including a full bath in the first floor of your home addition regardless of its immediate intended use. You may not need a shower in your new home office or den, but a first-floor primary bedroom suite may well prove invaluable as you grow older.
Ready to get started on your Cape Cod home remodeling project? Please contact us to arrange a consultation.