Improving your home during the pandemic

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Home renovations have skyrocketed over the past year. A lot of people are working from home and spending more time there, so they’re now making upgrades.

And contractors are staying busy, even during a pandemic.

Corey Johnson is a builder in Sioux Falls.

“We’ve been busy, yes” Johnson said.

With lots of remodeling projects.

“Fireplaces we’ve done tons of fireplaces; remodeling bathrooms, master bathrooms, everybody is kind of getting caught up and they’ve been living at home and they’re like you know I’m sick and tired of looking at the same bathroom,” Johnson said.

Johnson and his crew have spent a lot of time at Kristi Nordquist’s home since the start of the pandemic.

“My front door was atrocious,” Nordquist said.

Nordquist was so tired of looking at her front door and window because she says they were just outdated.

So she hired Johnson and his crew to replace them along with updating her two upstairs bathrooms with new vanities, floors, lights and more.

Nordquist thought now would be the right time.

“Well I wanted to stimulate the economy, number one, and number two they really needed to get done, they were very outdated,” Nordquist said.

Johnson also rewired the antique light pole that sits outside Nordquist’s home.

According to Porch.com about 76 percent of U.S. homeowners carried out at least one home improvement project since the start of the pandemic.

If you’re thinking about remodeling at your home here are a few tips.

Johnson says first set a realistic budget – it pays to set aside extra money for any unforeseen hidden costs.

Second, he says don’t be too trendy. You may want what’s “new and now” but what’s trendy today won’t necessarily be in style a few years down the road.

“You want to make something last because five years from now things are going to change,” Johnson said.

Johnson says another mistake people make is only focusing on the inside things like kitchen upgrades and additions, but Johnson says if you want to add more value to your home, don’t forget about curb appeal.

“Curb appeal is huge when you are trying to resell your house, people want to see something nice, I want to live in a nice looking house and I want nice quality products,” Johnson said.

And finally, while a lot of people may want to tackle a DIY project, many remodels should be left to the professionals, like Johnson, who has years of experience in building and remodeling, something Nordquist couldn’t agree with more.

“Yeah, no, you don’t want me to do it, by myself,” Nordquist said.

Johnson says if you’re going to hire someone make sure you always get good references and estimates before you start any project.

“We have a lot of good builders in town, a lot of good remodelers a lot of us take pride in the quality of work we do and we are there to make sure things last and if you need warranties, you’re covered,” Johnson said.

Nordquist is pleased with how all of her renovations turned out.

“Fabulous quality work,” Nordquist said.

Johnson says don’t forget about your windows, too, because the biggest energy loss of any home is through the windows.

You can get more tips and information on remodeling your home by visiting the Home Show which is this weekend.

It runs three days this Friday, Saturday and Sunday (February 26-28) at the Sioux Falls Convention Center and Arena. Show hours are Friday and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.