Ready to Renovate? Finding a Home with Good Bones

You’ve probably heard the phrase “good bones” tossed around a lot, whether you’re familiar with real estate or not.

Do any of these phrases sound familiar?

“This house has really good bones.”

“You can do a lot with a home as long as it has good bones.”

“That house is run down, but if you were to look inside you’d see that it has good bones to work with.”

Though you’ve heard it, do you know what it means?

Many times, the phrase “good bones” is used to describe a home that has a solid structure but needs some TLC.

If you’re in the market for a home to remodel, look for one that has these key attributes.

Quality construction

You can tell a lot about how well-built a home is by walking through and determining how it “feels.” A few things you can look for are cracks near stairways or the tops of doors, or any listing or sagging in the structure. Make sure the roof and the foundation are in good shape because they’re the most expensive areas for you to have repaired. Shingles and plumbing are easier for you to replace than a damaged foundation!

Solid building materials

Typically, the lumber used to build older homes is of a higher quality than what has been used more recently, though that’s not a hard and fast rule. Stone and brick that are in good condition are usually a safe choice.

Favorable floor plan

Does the house have a “flow?” Pay attention to how traffic would move through the home. Look for a home with a floor plan that gives you some flexibility yet maintains a balance between public and private spaces. Keep in mind that you can make small changes fairly easily but changing a home’s floor plan is going to be a major undertaking and cost you a pretty penny.


If you can find a home that has unique architectural details, you’re in luck. Exposed beams or detailed molding can be little accents that add personality and can serve as a conversation piece for your guests. Look for a home that doesn’t feel like it’s a cookie-cutter copy.

Natural light

A home full of light seems more cheerful, doesn’t it? A bright and sunny feel is a plus, but you shouldn’t walk away from a home on this factor alone. You can add windows or skylights to bring in more light.

Connection between inside and outside

You want a home that works where it’s located. Do you like the lot as a whole? It’s nice to have a soft transition from indoors to out. You can also do a lot with landscaping to create a sense of continuity from inside to outside.

Room proportions

You may feel like Goldilocks, but you’re looking for rooms that are not too big and not too small and ceilings that are not too high and not too low. A small room with low ceilings can make you feel a bit claustrophobic. A room that’s too big with ceilings that are too high can feel cavernous.

The right fit

Of course, you’re looking for a home that has all the structural and other components that would qualify it as having “good bones,” but you’re also seeking a place that feels right for you and your family. A reputable real estate company, like Corolla Real Estate, can help you find the home that’s the perfect fit for you and your family—good bones and all.