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Caudill Design Group Blog
Monday, February 20 2017
Remodeling Cost vs. Value

Remodeling magazine has released its 2017 report providing homeowners with national average costs of many remodeling projects, as well as expected return on investment. The data do vary by region, but typically the hotter the real estate market, the higher the return on investment; and in case you didn't hear, we are in a fairly hot market area. So, these figures are probably lows for our area. 

Some of our typical project requests, along with national average cost and return if the home is sold one year later are: 

Project Cost Return % of Return
Deck Addition $10,707 $7,652 71.5%
Bath Remodel $18,546 $12,024 64.8%
Minor Kitchen Remodel $20,830 $16,699 80.2%
Upscale Bath Remodel $59,979 $35,456 59.1%
Major Kitchen Remodel $62,158 $40,560 65.3%
Master Suite Addition $119,533 $77,506 64.8%
Two story Addition $176,108 $125,222 71.1%

If those numbers aren't impressive to you, think of it this way: How would you feel about dropping a few thousand dollars on a trip to Disney World, knowing you would get 75% of the money back in a year? Looking at strictly return on investment leaves out the enjoyment you'll receive from your new kitchen or bathroom. You may not enjoy it as much as a Disney trip, but you will enjoy it every day!

Posted by: AT 02:06 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, June 25 2015
Inside the Beltline Makeover Complete!

Remodel and addition of a bungalow in Raleigh has been completed!

Posted by: Rusty Caudill AT 06:37 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Monday, April 20 2015
Inside-the-Beltline Makeover (continued...again!)

It has been a while since I updated my blog about this fantastic addition and remodel.  Things are progressing nicely now that we have good weather! We are currently finishing the drywall inside and working on finishing touches outside. We expect to have our owners back home within four or five weeks! 

Posted by: Rusty Caudill AT 01:43 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, March 08 2015
Inside-the-Beltline Makeover (continued)

Finally, we've had some sunshine and warmer temperatures. We're making good progress toward our transformation goals - just need a couple more dry days...and another dumpster!

Posted by: Rusty Caudill AT 08:16 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Saturday, February 28 2015
Inside-the-Beltline Makeover

Late last year I was contacted by a young couple who owned a 1940's vintage 1072 square foot home in an area of Raleigh that was undergoing massive regentrification. It seemed every time I went to meet with the owners another house had been razed in the neighborhood and construction of a new home beginning or about to begin. We discussed the owners' goals and dreams for their home, and after a few meetings, we had a design for adding 1304 square feet and a total exterior makeover. The only part of their home that was unaffected was their kitchen, which they had recently updated.

I realized that this addition and makeover was going to be a really special project and so I asked them about showing it during the 2015 Raleigh HBA Remodelers' Tour in April. They agreed to open their home to the public during the Tour, but to make the deadline, we needed to move quickly. The owners needed to get their funding in place, and I got the final plans done, engineered, and permitted with the City of Raleigh. By the time we were ready to jump in with both feet, February came along! I was very frustrated that we were ready, and on a very tight schedule, and Arctic blast after Arctic blast came our way, preventing any foundation work from happening. After a couple of weeks of hoping for a break, I had to tell my team and the owners that we would not be ready for the Tour.

Because I can't take advantage of the Tour, I've decided to post pictures and a running update as we progress toward this beautifully updated home. One of the things I take the most pride in is that the home will look like it belongs in the old neighborhood — a bungalow-style home.

So off we go!

Our first step was to remove a front and rear concrete stoop because we were adding eight feet to the first floor across the front, and ten feet across the rear.

At the time of this posting, we have finally gotten our foundation built (between snowstorms!) and hope to begin framing next week. More to come! I hope you enjoy the transformation as much as I will!

Posted by: Rusty Caudill AT 10:07 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Friday, January 16 2015
Best of Houzz Winner (AGAIN!)

Proud to announce this:


Best Of Houzz 2015 Award

Over 25 Million Monthly Unique Users Rated Top-Rated Home Building,

Remodeling and Design Professionals in the United States and Around the World

Raleigh NC, January 16, 2015Caudill Design Group Design-Build, LLC of Raleigh, NC has been awarded “Best Of Houzz” for Customer Satisfaction by Houzz, the leading platform for home remodeling and design. The six-year old design-build firm was chosen by the more than 25 million monthly unique users that comprise the Houzz community from among more than 500,000 active home building, remodeling and design industry professionals.

The Best Of Houzz award is given in two categories: Design and Customer Satisfaction. Customer Satisfaction honors are determined by a variety of factors, including the number and quality of client reviews a professional received in 2014. Winners will receive a “Best Of Houzz 2015” badge on their profiles, helping Houzz users around the world who discover and love a professional’s work to learn even more about that business’ popularity and satisfaction rating among their peers in the Houzz community. 

“We are very proud that the Houzz community and our customers have given us this prestigious award two consecutive years,” said Rusty Caudill, managing member. “We take a lot of pride in pleasing our customers to the extent that they want to tell others about us.”

“Houzz provides homeowners with a 360 degree view of home building, remodeling and design industry professionals, empowering them to engage the right people and products for their project,” said Liza Hausman, vice president of industry marketing for Houzz. “We’re delighted to recognize Caudill Design Group among our “Best Of” professionals as judged by our community of homeowners and design enthusiasts who are actively remodeling and decorating their homes.”

Follow Caudill Design Group Design-Build, LLC on Houzz by clicking here:

About Houzz

Houzz is the leading platform for home remodeling and design, providing people with everything they need to improve their homes from start to finish - online or from a mobile device. From decorating a room to building a custom home, Houzz connects millions of homeowners, home design enthusiasts and home improvement professionals across the country and around the world. With the largest residential design database in the world and a vibrant community powered by social tools, Houzz is the easiest way for people to find inspiration, get advice, buy products and hire the professionals they need to help turn their ideas into reality. Headquartered in Palo Alto, CA, Houzz also has international offices in London, Berlin and Sydney. For more information, visit

Posted by: Rusty AT 10:30 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, January 03 2015
Remodel or Move?

One of the most common questions people ask me is whether it is smarter to remodel an existing house or sell and move to a space more suited to their needs. This is a very good, but complex question to answer, and it often brings up many factors. Some of them include:

  1. value of other homes nearby;
  2. type of remodel or addition;
  3. age of the house;
  4. comfort level of neighborhood;
  5. availability of desired features in an existing house;
  6. return on investment.

We can look at each one individually to help you evaluate your situation and come up with the best option for you.

The “value of other nearby homes” factor brings up that old adage “don’t overbuild for your neighborhood”. While this is basically true, you have to consider that neighborhoods in great locations tend to redevelop with new homes or upgraded homes eventually. If you are in a great location, you might start a trend of improving homes around you, and as we all know, it’s better to the first than the last! If you are in a newer neighborhood or not in a desirable location, the overbuild adage may be words to heed.

The type of improvement you want to make is very important. Simply updating finishes, or a kitchen or bath makeover is definitely something you’ll enjoy. You may not get a 100% return on the investment when you sell, but making your house into a place of comfort and enjoyment should override that concern. If you have in mind a porch or garage addition, again, the enjoyment of the improvement should rule. If you have in mind a large addition that will likely exceed the current value of the house, you should probably re-read the first factor paragraph.

The age of the house is an interesting one. The older the home, the more surprises you will find in a major remodel. You may find that plumbing or electrical needs to be redone, or that the structure isn’t what it needs to be. This may make your improvement more expensive than you thought. However, older homes tend to be in desirable locations, so the improvement or replacement may be worthwhile.

“We love the neighborhood” is something I’ve heard many times as an argument for remodeling. People get comfortable with their surroundings and are hesitant to leave. I understand and appreciate those feelings - I call it putting down roots. If this is how you feel, by all means make your house what you want, and others around you will likely follow suit.

Sometimes what you want is simply not available in the market. The “mother-in-law suite” is probably the most common example of this. A separate apartment for an older loved one is all but impossible to find, and the desire for these spaces will likely grow over the next decade or two, making it a good resale investment.

If all you care about is getting your money out of the improvement a few years down the road, you probably shouldn’t remodel. National statistics show that kitchen makeovers typically return 85% or so, new windows and doors are just below that, and new bathrooms are around 75%. All others fall below that 75% level, so there has to be more justification for the improvement than monetary return. For me, the overriding justification is personal enjoyment. Your home is where you should feel the utmost comfort and enjoyment!

Posted by: Rusty Caudill AT 01:39 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Sunday, October 12 2014
Remodeling Cost Reality Check

Let's face it - it is no fun coming up with grand ideas of worthwhile home improvements only to have your hopes dashed by contractors' lofty estimates. Fact is, a vast majority of homeowners don't know how much remodeling costs these days. To help get those feet firmly grounded, here are a few "average" cost guidelines for you.

Kitchen renovations often are the biggest sticker shock item. If you want to makeover a medium sized kitchen (12'x12'), replacing cabinets, tops, appliances, plumbing fixtures, and adding a tile backsplash, figure on a minimum of $25,000. This would include factory made cabinets, granite tops, mid-range appliances, decent sink and faucet, and tile for the backsplash. Other costs in the total are for electrical upgrades, demolition and disposal. Of course, if your tastes run more toward higher quality, the cost could be much higher.

Bathroom renovation is another popular project that can be higher in cost than expected. If you have tile that was installed back around the 1950's or 60's, it is probably on wire mesh and a thick mortar bed. Demolition of the tile can get expensive, as well as adding layers to make up for the thickness of the bed. A typical 5'x8' bathroom of this vintage can be $8000 to remodel. That includes new tile, new cabinet, new top, new fixtures, new light, and new mirror, but all plumbing remaining in the same location. If you want to move things around, costs go up accordingly. A master bathroom can be higher because of size, tub selection, and an extra vanity. If you have a master bath with tub, shower, double vanity, and toilet, figure around $10,000 for the makeover.

Other areas to be remodeled are less expensive than kitchens and baths. I often tell people to figure on $100 per square foot for most additions, but obviously adding a bathroom will cost more than that. Likewise, updating other rooms with flooring and paint will not be nearly as much as kitchens and baths.

Costs of remodeling projects vary greatly. I don't want to scare you off by saying that the above are minimums. Many of the costs are in your control - things you pick out - such as the cabinets and tops. My best advice is to talk with a contractor with experience and a good reputation to see what can be accomplished within your budget. Caudill Design Group is always willing to consult with you at absolutely no obligation or cost to you!

Posted by: Rusty Caudill AT 08:55 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, February 04 2014
Best of Houzz Winner

Caudill Design Group Design-Build LLC of Raleigh, NC has been awarded “Best Of Houzz” by Houzz, the leading platform for home remodeling and design. The family owned and service excellence-driven company was chosen by the more than 16 million monthly users that comprise the Houzz community.

The Best Of Houzz award is given in two categories: Customer Satisfaction and Design. Customer Satisfaction honors are determined by a variety of factors, including the number and quality of client reviews a professional received i n 2013. Design award winners’ work was the most popular among the more than 16 million monthly users on Houzz, known as “Houzzers,” who saved more than 230 million professional images of home interiors and exteriors to their personal ideabooks via the Houzz site, iPad/iPhone app and Android app . Winners will receive a “Best Of Houzz 2014” badge on their profiles, showing the Houzz community their commitment to excellence. These badges help homeowners identify popular and top-rated home professionals in every metro area on Houzz.

“We are delighted that Houzz has recognized our efforts to far exceed the expectations of our customers”, said Rusty Caudill, member-manager with over 25 years in the residential design and construction business, “and even more delighted that our homeowners felt us deserving of the award!”

“Houzz provides homeowners with the most comprehensive view of home building, remodeling and design professionals, empowering them to find a nd hire the right professional to execute their vision,” said Liza Hausman, vice president of community for Houzz. “We’re delighted to recognize Caudill Design Group Design-Build among our “Best Of” professionals for customer satisfaction as judged by our community of homeowners and design enthusiasts who are actively remodeling and decorating their homes.”

With Houzz, homeowners can identify not only the top-rated professionals like Rusty Caudill , but also those whose work matches their own aspirations for their home. Homeowners can also evaluate professionals by contacting them directly on the Houzz platform, asking questions about their work and reviewing their responses to questions from others in the Houzz community.

Posted by: CDG AT 03:11 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, September 01 2013
Space for Mom and Dad

A lot of the additions that we design and build are to accommodate aging parents, either in their home or at the home of their children. With that in mind, we offer custom designs - such as the "Space for Mom and Dad 3040". It's a traditional design with space for three generations under one roof! If you don't have aging parents, it's great for come-back kids, too! 

Posted by: Rusty Caudill AT 10:18 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email

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Caudill Design Group
PO Box 3066
Cary, NC 27519