March News + Renovations Worth Doing

Spring is in the air(-ish that snow kinda threw me!) and many of us start doing work on their homes now that things have thawed out. Some renovations bring higher value than others, so let’s discuss what they are this month.

Sales are down for February from 2017 numbers, but I don’t think it’s anything more than a long over due correction. Market stats for February 2018 Davidson county are here. Williamson county stats are here.

You’ve heard it before, but it bears repeating. The dollars spent on your renovation does not mean your house will sell for that same amount more than before the work was done. The market doesn’t care what you spent, the market cares if it’s done well, and looks good to the highest number of people. Not fair, I know, but that’s the reality. That means choosing renovations wisely is important if you think you might sell in a few years. If you don’t plan to budge for awhile, you can cater to your own personal whims a little more freely. i.e. unusual colored tile. It can be very polarizing and is highly personalized, so do it for you, just don’t expect others will want to pay top dollar for it.

While overall ROI varies slightly from region to region, across the country, according to RIS media, the best returns on investment are the following:

  1. Attic insulation. Lower utility bills are the winner!
  2. Entry door replacement. A fresh solid door adds curb appeal, as well as security.
  3. Manufactured stone veneer exterior. Who knew?!
  4. Minor kitchen remodel. A little refresh can go (and pay) a long way.
  5. Garage door replacement. See #2 – all the same reasons!
  6. Finish out attic/basement space. Adding habitable square footage under existing footprint.

What about for our region? 2017 reports from show that for the South Central region, the improvements with the best ROI are:

  1. Attic Insulation
  2. Backup power generator. Thanks to tornadoes and hurricanes!
  3. Backyard patio. Milder weather means more time outdoors.
  4. Basement/attic remodel.
  5. Bathroom addition.
  6. Bathroom remodel.


I admit, I’ve been on the go and not cooking as much as I like lately, so I tried to think of what few things I have been making. My sweet potato hummus, which can be eaten as a snack, or light lunch with something else, freezes well, so make big batches at once for the gift that keeps on giving.

1/4 cup cashew pieces, soaked overnight and rinsed.

2 medium sweet potatoes, cooked and scooped out of their skins

3 tablespoons tahini

3 cloves of garlic, blanched in boiling water for 5 minutes

1/4 cup olive oil (if the mixture is too thick, just add a bit more)

1 heaping tablespoon of Trader Joe’s Harissa paste (or to taste – it’s spicy!)

Lemon juice to taste (1/2 to 1 whole lemon)

Salt to taste

Put all ingredients into the food processor or high powered blender until smooth! That’s it. You’re done!

I will eat this will anything! From pita bread, radish chips, crackers, even cucumber slices, it’s good on absolutely anything. I’ve even been known to just grab a spoon when I’m in a real hurry, but let’s keep that between us , OK?


Until next time!