Well, I've been clearing off my desk and finally got down to a nice story from the New York Times of 4/19/09: How Consumer Expectations about the Home Have Changed, and How They Might Change Again.
We all know that today's consumer wants a family room adjacent to a kitchen, wants two baths upstairs, and wants a master of a certain size--few of these amenities were typically available when our homes were originally built. We know the average home size has increased substantially.
The story talks about the exit of Home Depot from the Expo experiment,about the eco-renovators who focus more on green stuff than green performance (I think I'll go crazy if I hear about another $1200 side table cum polished ancient forest wood chunk). They also discuss, in a nutshell, the notion that "No one ever said, 'I want one sink instead of two.'"
But I am noticing more modest renovations, and outside of Piedmont, a tremendous amount of cornere-cutting in the slap-dash house flips these days. Three years ago, homeowners felt like their investments