Boy on bench with yellow raincoat
Brie Williams

Making Plans

Cheryl and Mat took their time making plans to update the house. "We lived in the house and analyzed what we needed to change," she says. "When we knew what we wanted, we put our ideas together."

Those ideas included knocking down walls to create large, usable spaces, modernizing baths, remodeling the kitchen, and adding a guest room to the third floor.

After local builders recommended plans that would have cost between $600,000 and $700,000, Cheryl took matters into her own hands. "Suddenly, I was picking out windows, floors, and doors," she says.

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