Dining Rooms. Who needs them?

Does your home have a Dining Room (DR)? Do you use it?  Unless you have a large family and need to seat eight or more people on a daily basis, you probably only use your DR a couple of times a year.  If you’re like me, you probably don’t do any entertaining for business at your home.  If you do, it’s likely that the entertaining is informal, rather than formal.  If you do formal, business related entertaining in your home, you can stop reading now – you do need a DR!

So, why do you need a DR (or think you need one)?

  • Extended Family dinners on holidays a couple of time a year
  • To store your dining room furniture
  • You think you need one for resale
  • Because you always have had one

At one time these were all valid reasons.  In today’s market, however, a DR has become an unnecessary and expensive luxury.  You still may have some of the needs, but do you really need a separate, dedicated space?

The new home building market has been severely impacted by the troubled, overall housing market.  Prices for existing homes have dropped substantially.  Buyers for new homes are looking for smaller and less expensive homes.  Here are a few of the reasons why:

  • Buyers have lost equity in their current homes so they have less cash to fund a new home
  • Many people have experienced income downsizing because of the weak economy, the poor job market and labor cut-backs
  • While the cost of land and construction labor has dropped, the cost of building materials continues to rise
  • The cost of home heating and cooling continues to rise

New home buyers are no longer willing to buy homes with wasted space.  The Dining Room of yesterday is today’s wasted space.  Today’s new homes must be right-sized for the current market and that means living areas must be flexible and designed to live the way people live today.  Having specialized rooms just for the sake of re-sale is an obsolete concept.

Homeowners thinking of remodeling should consider converting their existing Dining Room into another use:

  • Home office
  • Media room
  • Away room (I need my space room)
  • Study
  • Household command center for mail, computer and printer, bills, file storage, etc.

Most Kitchen eating areas or Breakfast rooms can be remodeled to accommodate all the functions of yesterday’s Dining Room.   Re-making your home to fit today’s lifestyle will make it live better and may also make it more desirable in the current resale market.

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