With new construction on the rebound, more opportunities exist for homeowners to customize homes with unique features that match their preferences. Distinctive homes may have character, but they can create difficulty when selling. Specific, elaborate touches shut out buyers, and limited traffic impedes a sale. Homeowners may covet customization, but a look they love could be a look others love to hate.
Barring that, your home should be your home before you put it on the market. To achieve a custom look without compromising resale value, do-it-yourself architectural details are a safe bet because they can be removed without damaging the home’s structure.
There are several options to consider when doing this, and you don’t have to have a degree in architecture to make an impact. Home improvement stores have a variety of inexpensive pieces and finishes to choose from, so pick what appeals to you to get started.
If you’re a DIY neophyte, try framing. Rather than spend a fortune on framed artwork, create the same effect by trimming out wall spaces with wide and thin pieces of molding. Think of the wider molding as the frame, and the thinner molding as the matte frame inside. Group alternating sizes together for a cohesive art installation that can be taken down in a snap.
Other less challenging DIY installs include shelves, crown molding, baseboards, window or door trim and rosette applications.
For those with more experience, punch up your ceiling with a medallion. Associated with traditional décor, a medallion adds drama, height and visual interest. It can be affixed to the ceiling using adhesive caulk – and it doesn’t have to anchor a chandelier or other light fixture. If traditional isn’t your thing, paint the medallion white for a bright, contemporary twist on a classic feature.
Intermediate DIY-ers can also add architectural elements in the form of cabinetry moldings, cornices and doorway arches.
DIY experts seeking ornate features can go all-out with large-scale installations, including custom millwork like paneling and columns, dividers or sliding screens, and wainscoting or board-and-batten. For the latter, pay particular attention to height – higher installs make a grander statement.
Whether you have a penchant for period architecture or err towards traditional, ensure that the details you add are easily removable when it’s time to get your home show-ready. You (and the buyer who wants to make an offer!) will be glad you did.
Suzanne De Vita is RISMedia’s Online Associate Editor and frequent contributor to the company’s blog, Housecall.