How Can You Tell Your Home Is Outdated?
A Handy Checklist
Is your home outdated?
Trends come and go like the seasons — and sometimes more quickly! Fads fade faster than you can keep up with the “latest and greatest.” When it comes to your home, trends are like guests: welcome, but you don’t want them staying forever. Throw pillows, paintings, linens, curtains… these elements can be easily and relatively inexpensively switched out.
Core features, like flooring, ceilings, fixtures, appliances, and cabinetry, however, can make your entire space feel dated. Is your home showing signs of age? Let’s find out!
Time for a Change?
Shag carpeting, dark wood paneling, and avocado green appliances are easy. What are some other signs your home could use an update?
- Carpet Everywhere. Carpet is a staple in many homes, and for good reason. It offers insulative and sound-absorbing properties, and it can create a warm, cozy atmosphere. That said, wall-to-wall, every-square-inch-covered carpeting often makes homes feel outdated. And let’s not even get started on bathroom carpeting (that trend was big in the ‘90s for some reason)!
To keep your home looking fresh, clean, and timeless, opt for smoother surfaces (e.g. hardwood), and add some color and warmth with area or throw rugs.
A little carpet goes a long way!
- Honey-Hued Cabinets. They’re classic and cozy, right? Well… these golden oldies have seen better days. Trendy in the 1980s and 1990s, honey oak and other warm wood cabinets turn your kitchen into a time warp. Sleek light-stained options (e.g. white, grey) will stand the test of time, create a light, airy space, and provide a perfect canvas for small updates (as simple as new dish towels!) that will keep your home fresh.
See what we mean:
- Beige, Anyone? Beige has a solid track record as a go-to neutral. But if your walls have pink, peach, or yellow undertones, it becomes instantly dated. Cooler neutrals like grey are a crisp alternative. If you do like a warm look, there’s always greige — grey with softer brown tones.
- Popcorn is for the Movies. Oh, that textured ceiling trend! It’s not coming back. Ever. Don’t worry that if you replace this lumpy, bumpy, impossible-to-clean surface with gorgeous beams, coffered ceilings, or — if you don’t have the height — a ¼ or ½ inch of sheetrock, that the popcorn look will return. Your rooms will instantly look larger, brighter, and cleaner.
- Yawn-inducing hardware and fixtures. We hate to pick on gold, but these door knobs, drawer pulls, faucets, and fixtures need to bow out gracefully. Silvers and bronzes are much more contemporary. Unlike popcorn ceilings, though, gold is not going away. If you like the warmth, today’s updates are more muted, less shiny, less brassy, and more enduring in their appeal.
- Appliances Come in One Color: White. White goes with everything. Sure. It’s also hard to keep spotless, and it’s a turn-off if you want to sell your home. Realtor Will Johnson says, “White appliances make a kitchen feel very dated, and is a deal-breaker for many buyers. Upgrading to stainless steel or black appliances can make a huge difference.”
Even if you do not plan to sell, an upgrade will also make a huge difference in your enjoyment of this important space.
Stainless steel appliances make a clean, modern statement
- Lame-inate Countertops. Laminate is an affordable option, but it’s not a long-lasting one in terms of style or practicality. Laminate counters are easily damaged by heat and start to look their age quickly. Surfaces like granite, quartz, concrete, and stainless steel are more durable, easier to keep clean and sanitary, and, of course, aesthetically pleasing.
- “Ohh, That Railing is Certainly… Ornate!” Intricate, statement-making staircase railings were all the rage in the early aughts. It makes a different statement now: outdated. You cannot go wrong with simple, elegant, and timeless.
That’ll do quite nicely
- Lackluster Linoleum. Linoleum was a favorite fifteen to twenty years ago. But like laminate counters, these floors are not made to last. They can add a dreary, grungy flavor to your home. Clear your palate with clean hardwood, LVP, tile, or other top choices.
- It’s inefficient. Part of the enjoyment of your home is knowing it not only looks its best but also performs its best. If your appliances are inefficient or your design features (e.g. some flooring options) contribute to heating/cooling loss, it’s certainly time for an upgrade.
Is your home looking a little tired? Find out with our “Love Where You Live” quiz. Whether you need a little refresh or a complete remodel, an investment in your home’s beauty, style, and functionality will deliver returns you’ll love for years to come.
by Katie Mientka