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Housing and Moving This forum is for anything to do with your house, whether it's looking for a new place to live, completing repairs or if you're packing up your bags to relocate permanently.

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Major Home Improvements - What Do You Prioritize? - July 5th 2021, 06:02 PM

Hi everyone! I noticed this forum doesn't have any threads, so I decided to make one to discuss major home improvements. Not "repairs," per se, but improvements like adding solar panels to the roof, getting the kitchen or backyard redone, etc. My husband and I moved into our home a little over a year ago, and we love the place! I can see us staying here for the rest of our lives (which was not the case with the place we owned for 4.5 years prior to moving). Since we're planning to stay for the long-term, we're thinking about what we want to gradually do over the course of time (some of these projects are, like, 10+ years from now ).

We're in Southern California, so solar panels are a bit of a no-brainer for us based on how much sun we get and how expensive it can be to run A/C in the summer and fall. Has anyone gone through the process of getting solar panels installed? If so, how has that worked out for you? We've got a quote and feel like it's a good deal, but there's still that small part of my brain that's saying, "But you won't know how much you'll save until they're installed, and what if the estimates are wrong?!" I guess the worst-case scenario would be that we break even, so I'm reminding myself to not catastrophize. My brain also starts wondering what will happen 50 years down the road when we're in our 80's and may need to replace the solar panels while living on a fixed income (I guess we just wouldn't bother? Or maybe the technological advances will be so great that there's a cheaper energy alternative at that point, haha.)

We've also talked about eventually replacing the cabinets in the kitchen, expanding the kitchen outward so we can install an island, building a breakfast bar, etc. All things we don't need right now, but they would be nice to have further down the road. Same goes for the backyard... working on the slope so we can plant more trees, that sort of thing. Unlike with solar panels, these improvements won't save us money. They'll certainly increase the value of our home (if we ever do change our minds and decide to sell), and they'll enhance our lives in minor ways, but they're certainly not as high of a priority in the grand scheme of things.

I'm curious to hear from other homeowners and what you're prioritizing, as I'm sure it depends on where you live and what's important to you. If you're not a homeowner yet, then I suppose this discussion thread can be a great place to start getting ideas!

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Re: Major Home Improvements - What Do You Prioritize? - July 5th 2021, 06:17 PM

No idea on the solar panels, but when I moved down here the first thing we did was replace the floors, but the old floors were also dilapidated so Maybe there's something that functionally could be better that you can start with?

Do you ever get a little bit tired of life
Like you're not really happy but you don't wanna die
Like you're hanging by a thread but you gotta survive
'Cause you gotta survive
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