Tips for Add Value to a Living Room

When renovation and real estate expert Scott McGillivray designs a living room he always keeps ROI (return on investment) top of mind. And the best way to do that? Keep it neutral. “When you’re thinking about return on investment you need to appeal to as wide a range of people as possible,” says Scott. “Color is very subjective and what one person likes, another hates. So to appeal to the masses it’s best to keep the major elements neutral.” This doesn’t mean you can’t still add color and personality. “You can still accessorize however you want – just do it with things that are inexpensive and easy to change.”

Open concept homes are becoming more popular than ever. If your home already has an open floor plan, great, but if not, Scott suggests that knocking down some walls to create an open layout can add value to your home. “The demand for open floor plans is high, so working this type of layout into your renovation plans can add value to your home because it makes it more appealing to potential buyers. You obviously have to weigh the costs, but if you’re considering a renovation, it’s worth exploring the idea.” 

Whether your home is open concept or not, consistent flooring throughout is a good way to help make rooms flow together and make a home feel bigger. “Hardwood flooring throughout is the most common phrase in North American real estate listings,” says Scott, “so if you can afford it, hardwood is a smart investment.” The only time this doesn’t run true is in a basement. “Hardwood floors should never be used below grade. Basements can be damp and they run the risk of water damage. If hardwood gets wet you won’t be able to save it.” If hardwood is not in your budget other types of flooring such as laminate and vinyl can also offer a good return on investment. “In this basement makeover we used vinyl plank floors. They look good and they’re extremely durable.”

Every home needs storage, and sometimes closets and armoires aren’t enough. In Scott’s Reno to Reveal project he had a custom media wall built into one side of the living room to accommodate books, games, and a home bar. “No one has ever complained that a house had too much storage, so I recommend fitting some in wherever you can.” Media walls are also great because they can help to tie in multiple focal points. In this room the television and fireplace were competing focal points so Scott incorporated them into the unit and created a column effect with tile. The result is that the entire wall becomes the focal point with an emphasis on the right hand side where the television and fireplace are housed. The left hand side blends into the surroundings and provides storage and extra seating.