The Best Tips on Renovating and Selling a Home In South Florida
Contributed by Jim McKinley
Renovating a home to sell is a massive undertaking, and there are so many things to think about
according to which state you’re in. For Florida homes, it’s important to be familiar with the
neighborhood, the weather, and state property laws. Having a good plan in place will save you
time, money, and energy and will keep everyone involved in the project happy, so be sure you
figure out the details before work starts.
Here are some of the best tips on renovating a home in Florida.
As with any project, the planning stage is the most crucial and the most fun. Here you can be
creative and really let your imagination run wild. Look through design magazines and check out
shows on HGTV to get some ideas
on what you want the home to look like. There are a ton of
options, so do some research to find out how old the home is and consider making its history part
of the renovations. Many old Florida homes
include tile rather than carpet or wood, so consider
that when you’re thinking about your budget.
About that budget…
Sit down and work on the budget with someone who is experienced in home renovations. You’ll
probably want to pad it a bit just to give yourself some wiggle room, because there’s nothing
worse than getting halfway through a project and realizing you don’t have the money to finish
what you started. Not completing a budget plan could mean you have to abandon your original
ideas to make something else work.
Talk to an agent
Consult a real estate agent to find out what your home’s value is, both before and an estimated
value following the renovation. This is important because you want to know that you’re making
a good investment, and unfortunately, many people don’t do the research ahead of time.
HomeAdvisor lists the best and worst remodeling projects (and other great related advice) here.
A real estate agent can also help you understand the laws of the land; for instance, if the house
was left to you in a will by a family member, there may be probate laws to consider.
Hire the right contractor
Talk to someone who has a lot of experience
with homes in Florida, as the state has very specific
weather patterns that will need to be addressed during building. Hurricanes, heat, and lots of
moisture can contribute to roof damage, mold, and fading paint, so it’s important to have
someone on the job who knows how to work around that.
Think about going eco-friendly
Because Florida is so sunny yet gets a fair amount of rain throughout the year, it might be a good
idea to go as eco-friendly as possible with the renovations. Investing in solar panels on the roof
can really pack a punch when you’re ready to sell, and it will save the buyers quite a bit of
money per year on their utility bills. Rain barrels are also a great idea, but check with city
ordinances first, as some cities have strict laws regarding rain barrels.
Get the legal stuff out of the way
You’ll want to make sure you’re covered no matter what the contingency, so speak to an
insurance agent before building begins and square that away. Your contractor will likely have
coverage, but it’s a good idea for you to have insurance as well. Apply for any permits or
licenses, as well, and contact the utility companies in the area to let them know when you’re
Once construction begins, it’s a good idea to monitor from a distance. Have one contact who is
in charge of everyday operations and speak only to that person to avoid delays and
miscommunication. And remember to make this process as stress-free as possible by making a
plan for as many things as possible. While you can’t think of everything-- during construction,
there’s bound to be a snag or two-- as long as you’re prepared, you’ll get through the renovation
and selling with grace.