Real estate and Renovations

Elizabeth Hayes is a realtor at Sotheby’s in Cambridge MA and she helps us understand what to look for if you’re hoping to buy a house that needs a major renovation. She also talks about how much to renovate in order to sell your house. 

Episode Recap

  • What to look for if you are hoping to find a fixer-upper
  • When should you not buy a house that needs a renovation?
  • Should you renovate before you sell your house?
  • Sustainable and environmentally friendly features are attractive to buyers
  • Vinyl might not be as desirable as it once was
  • Get your house checked out by a design professional before you buy it to get an idea of what renovations would be possible at the house

Learning from the mistakes of others

  • Spiral stairs are a renovation regret
  • Open plan might be a renovation regret

About return on investments

About this episode’s guest

Elizabeth Hayes has worked in real estate for over a decade. She first represented Boston area homebuyers, sellers and mortgage lenders as an attorney. Since 2006, she has focused exclusively on the sale and marketing of residential properties as a real estate broker. She brings a great deal of professional and personal experience to bear as she helps her clients successfully navigate the home buying and selling process. Elizabeth works hard to merit the trust her clients place in her and she strives to ensure that each transaction is as seamless as possible in this very competitive market. She has a reputation for negotiating with tenacity, tact and good humor, a skill she honed while serving as a Boston Assistant District Attorney for five years. And after having renovated and decorated a number of properties, Elizabeth has a wealth of first-hand knowledge and she loves helping her clients envision how they might bring out the best in the home they are contemplating buying or selling. Elizabeth is a graduate of Indiana University. She also lived in Paris and Strasbourg, France and is fluent in French. She currently resides in Watertown with her husband, Chris, and two terriers.

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Thanks to Ray Bernoff, the editor of the show.

The music is Blueberry Festival Footrace by David Fisher and performed by Hanneke Cassel

Cover Art by Sam White

If you need architectural advice, contact me through my website at

Email questions for future episodes to [email protected]

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