Trulia Community - Advice from neighbors and local experts

Find Your Community
We couldn't find that location. Please try again.
Get Expert Advice

Remodel & Renovate in San Diego : Real Estate Advice

  • All2K
  • Local Info150
  • Home Buying962
  • Home Selling105
  • Market Conditions78

Activity 23
Mon Oct 19, 2015
Susie Kay answered:
Mon Oct 5, 2015
Nancy Bergman answered:
You can estimate about $35 /50 per sq ft without the bathroom.
With an estimate, I can speak from personal experience, I did a 5x5 bathroom remodel with subway tiles, custom shower, and everything new cost me $7K. I also did a luxury bath with a separate jetted tub and shower, split sink, the works - I did it for about $15K - $20K.

I would also check with permitting and labor cost. It will vary.
Good luck.

Nancy S Bergman
Realtor - Cal BRE #01893550
Windermere Homes and Estates
14677 Via Bettona #120
San Diego, CA 92127
Cell (858) 617-9449
Email -
... more
0 votes 1 answer Share Flag
Thu Apr 30, 2015
Gary Birtles answered:
Hardwood flooring is definitely more desirable, but laminate flooring is a good alternative. There are perks and negatives to both materials. Price is definitely a factor in why one would choose laminate flooring. Hardwood flooring would probably increase resale value though. ... more
0 votes 26 answers Share Flag
Tue Mar 17, 2015
Arpad Racz answered:

Some buyers also have the heating ducts cleaned.

All the best,

0 votes 7 answers Share Flag
Thu Feb 5, 2015
Sarah Smith answered:
Make sure the lawn & plants are trimmed away from the house. With the drought I have noticed buyers looking to homes with little or no lawns. Native plantings are very popular. Clean windows always help and if the screens are tattered remove them. Of course touch up any chipping or peeling paint/stucco. Good luck! ... more
0 votes 8 answers Share Flag
Tue Dec 2, 2014
John Arendsen answered:
Right now San Diego County as a whole supports Accessory Dwelling Units (ADU's), granny flats, casitas, room additions and in some cases garage conversions. However, you really need to start with your local building, planning and zoning department. But be sure you also consult with your HOA as many developments, especially in Poway, have CC&R's that address parking in the streets or driveway for extended periods of time. ... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Mon Nov 25, 2013
Sinead McAllister answered:
If you are just remodeling and not adding, there is a chance that you will not be reassessed. I would need to know the specifics of your improvement. Otherwise, it depends on what area you are in. Daniel is correct, a good average is 1.25%, although it could be higher or lower, depending on your location.

​Sinead McAllister-Clifford
Real Estate Broker/ Realtor®

McAllister Homes Real Estate
Residential Sales & Property Management
License 01366009
858-205-5215 CELL EMAIL
... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Tue Oct 8, 2013
Hector Gastelum answered:
You need to do plans, get them approved by your Homeowner's Association first, then the city. Hire a professional licensed & bonded Contractor/Plumber to do the work
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Mon Aug 5, 2013
John Reeves answered:

Here are the Top 3 projects that can bring parts of the home up-to-date or add living space:

Replacing exterior siding with upscale fiber cement. The most cost-effective thing you can do to your home this year is to replace old siding with new, higher-end fiber cement.

Replacing an entry door with a mid-level 20-gauge steel door is an inexpensive upgrade at $1,238 on average, but it pays back handsomely and greatly improves curb appeal.

An attic remodel is the cheapest way to add space and a bathroom within the house. A basement remodel is the next most cost-efficient way to add living space, although code requirements for headroom and exterior doors make that project more complicated and more expensive.

Feel free to get in touch with me anytime if you have questions at all.

J. Reeves
... more
0 votes 23 answers Share Flag
Thu Jul 11, 2013
John Arendsen answered:
If you're not doing minimal infrastructure retrofitting or replacement i.e. plumbing, elec. gas, etc. you and your not dealing with any load bearing walls you're closer to $100/sf depending on your options and upgrades, i.e. flooring, fixtures, custom windows & doors, extravigant upgrades i.e faux finishes, crown molding, wanes coating, etc. If you are dealing with load bearing walls and/or major structural retrofitting and extensive infrastracture upgrades it could get to $200+ very easily. ... more
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Wed Apr 24, 2013
Toby answered:
As far as 203k contractors go I have used mayfield renovation for our second story addition. They knew the 203k process and gave us a very reasonable estimate.
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Wed Apr 3, 2013
Chad Basinger answered:
Without all the facts, one can't make an informed decision. Thus, it is imperative that all the facts are known and what the ramifications are for each "major" item that is noted. Keep in mind that what may be "major" for one party, may be "minor" for another. As a business professional representing buyers and sellers, my job is to advise my clients on the facts, point out the pros and cons, get them in touch with certain experts if applicable and answer any of their other questions or concerns. Ultimately, it is up to the buyer or seller how they would like to proceed.


Chad Basinger, REALTOR®, CPA, CFP®
... more
0 votes 7 answers Share Flag
Mon Jul 16, 2012
Deborah Garvin answered:

As already mentioned, there is really no way to provide an estimate by square footage without knowing the specifics of the project. Everything from windows and doors to siding are going to impact the costs.
The amount of work required to pour the foundation could be very simple, or need major excavating.

I agree with getting several bids; however, the lowest bid is by no means the sole criteria for hiring a contractor. How are you financing your intended project? Have you thought about using an FHA 203K loan? Without a doubt, it is the least expensive way to finance construction costs. I would be happy to clarify the product and process for you, if you have any interest. Best of luck to you!
... more
0 votes 6 answers Share Flag
Thu Dec 22, 2011
Reo Prep Vendor Management answered:
Hello John, not sure what the intent of your post is. We are actively involved in the real estate industry and we are in need of a few additional roofers/estimates in what appears to be your area for a few of our customers including real estate agents and a few asset credit unions in the San Diego area.. If you would like to refer one of your roofers that would be a benefit for them. ... more
0 votes 4 answers Share Flag
Mon Oct 17, 2011
John Arendsen answered:
You can take all the guess work out of it by contacting: Kari Arendsen. She's one of the top high end interior designers in California and is located in the Cedros Design center in Solona Beach. She's done many projects all thoughout the highend neighborhoods of San Deigo and has an un blemished reputation. Kari is just finishing a major remodel in La Jolla and would be more than happy to preview it for you.

You may also want to contact: Chad Arendsen is equally recognized as a highend general contractor and has works on kari's projects regularly. They are a great brother and sister team and both live and work in Solona Beach and cover all the high end neighborhoods.

Lastly, if you have not purchased a home yet please feel free to contact us at: 760 815-6977 or check out our very user friendly website below. We would love to help you locate your La Jolla home if you have not yet selected one or are not already committed to another broker/agent. Good luck and enjoy your La Jolla home.
... more
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
Thu Dec 23, 2010
Davide Salafia answered:
Overall, you can see more return on the kitchen and bath. However, if you think about it those rooms have the most expense too. The cost of materials to make us those rooms are much more expensive. The trick is to find materials at a lower cost that still provide an updated look. You'd be surprised at some materials that are clearanced just because! ... more
0 votes 6 answers Share Flag
Mon Dec 20, 2010
Kazem Zomorrodian answered:
Condo conversions are very tricky.
The developers did what was asked by the agency that approved the conversion.
The best way I know is to look at the approval resolution by the city that approved the condo map and see how restrictive they were.
They are all a case by case situation.
As an engineer which worked with agencies to create those maps I can tell you that, it is a bargaining game. City wants something and the developer can do so much based on the estimated selling price. So usually there is a compromise beyond the minimum mandatory standards.
If you have some technical back ground or understand the planning process you can go to the city that approved the map and ask from the planning Dept to give you the condition of approval and read through it. Also ask for the community comments at the hearings, if they have it. Some times you can find why some things were done based on those comments. Then you might want to go to the Engineering and Building dept.
If you need help you can call me at 760-845-3093 or contact me via my e mail

Happy Holidays
... more
0 votes 2 answers Share Flag
Mon Dec 20, 2010
Amanda Mitchell answered:
Another suggestion would be to become approved for the FHA 203k loan repairs and renovations!
0 votes 3 answers Share Flag
Thu Jan 14, 2010
David answered:
Great answers here! I believe if the cost of remodel is over $500, a permit is always required.
0 votes 5 answers Share Flag
1 2
Search Advice