Making an Investment in Your Home

Good Design

As many of you know, I am knee-deep in an entire house renovation at our farm in Hood River. Like any project or any venture for that matter, I’ve learned things that were new to me. Investing in your home will do that.


My husband and I have renovated dozens of our own homes and have participated in the renovation of hundreds of properties for clients over the years, and no two are alike. However, a few guiding principles remained the same for me in each of those projects for making a good investment.


Renovating any part of a home, let alone a whole house certainly brings budget challenges and the need to make financially sound decisions and make edits to stay within budget. However, I always feel that there is a way to achieve a super high-end look while not compromising quality and design.


Here are a few things that I never skimp on, and I have a hard time spending more money.

Good investment No.1 : Tile

There are thousands and thousands of tile options out there. There are also thousands of places to purchase the same tiles. For the tile in the lower level at our farm, I found a beautiful dark grey oversized tile with a slight texture and modeling. Knowing that I wanted to shop around to find the best price, I stopped in Home Depot with the sample I saw at one of the tile showrooms.


Home Depot had the same tile at half the cost of the same manufacturer. The only different thing was the name it was listed.

Even better than the price was that Home Depot had available stock for the 1600 square feet that I was doing. Making this trip saved me $4,800 and weeks of waiting for the tile to arrive. Home Depot and Lowe’s often sell lovely wall tiles too. Spending more on an accent tile is a way to get a high-end, custom look without breaking the bank. It’s better to make a good investment when you’ve shopped around.

Good investment No. 2 : Backsplashes

Backsplashes are where you can splurge on tile or stone because the general area is, in comparison, much smaller than tile for your floors or countertops for your kitchen. In addition, you can bring in some great design details with color, pattern, and texture at this stage.

No. 3: Cabinetry

Cabinets need to last. Choose wisely. If your budget allows for investing, I would suggest using solid wood frames with wood interiors. If there are budget constraints, I would still use a solid wood door. A quick and not so expensive upgrade is hinges. Having soft, closed hinges and door slides makes a huge difference in function and wear and tear.

No. 4: Hardware for cabinets

Door handles and pulls come in so many shapes and sizes. There are a lot of great places to purchase these at a discount. However, cutting corners on cost does not mean you have to skimp on style.

No. 5: Lighting

While I do think it’s worthwhile shopping around to find the best prices, I believe spending extra on lights is a good investment. Lights can be statement pieces. Although I am known to pop into Home Depot to buy a basketful of light fixtures to refresh a listing, I like to spend time looking at different makers for unique light fixtures for my projects.


A great way to find options is to select a few images that you see online and then search for other fixtures utilizing keywords that you would use to describe the fixtures that you initially found and were fond of it. Order a few and see how they work in your space. Be sure that you can return the ones that you do not use. Watch scale. I would say that light fixtures might be the number one thing that new buyers change in a home as lighting upon purchase of the house can be very basic.

Follow along on Instagram as I share more about my love of home and design. You can also read a few of my past blogs to read more about tips for good design and making a good investment for your home. 

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October 19, 2021

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