The fireplace is often the focal point of a at least one room in a home… and the trend is growing to kitchens, bathrooms and bedrooms.

Teeny, my little chug, and I love to curl up next to the warmth and the crackling sounds.

As I was explaining this post topic to a friend I actually got goosebumps explaining the importance of the fireplace in my upbringing. I’d never thought about it before.

I can’t imagine growing up without a fireplace. Where would I stand to take a prom picture? Or roast my first marshmallow? What about my Christmas stocking and opening presents nearby? Heck, we used to make popcorn in the dang thing.

I recently set out to see if remodeling the fireplace is cost effective in the value of your home. Do other people care?

BeFunky_fireplace2.jpgBert Williams is a realtor in Tulsa, Oklahoma, an area of the country where most homes have a fireplace.

He has a story of a fireplace remodel that turned off buyers.

“She had gone in with a Sharpie, a magic marker Sharpie, and covered the entire fireplace with scriptures,” said Williams.

If you’ve never tried to cover a marker with paint…. it’s difficult.

Now, some people might like her taste, but if not, most people aren’t like us DIYers. They want a house that’s move-in ready.

I asked Bert how do you know if your fireplace needs an update? He says if your house was built in the 70s, 80s or 90s, the fireplace probably needs some work.

“The house will begin to start looking dated long before you really notice it.”

If you’re not sure if you need to update it, look around at what you see in other homes. Hotels are a great place to start.

Bert recently updated his fireplace mantel for about $150.

“It’s not really a big project. It will take you some time because you don’t want to rush the finish.”

Click play below to hear how he did it himself and if your fireplace is a good candidate.

Here’s another thing to keep in mind… if you want to sell your home, there might be another area that needs updated first.

“Generally it’s not nearly as important as the kitchen would be in the overall scheme of how the house is laid out.”

Centuries ago fireplaces were huge, but in a different way. I mean huge as in size providing the only heat source in the home.

During a trip last year to Europe, I learned that fireplaces went out of style in much of the world with the invention of electricity.

I’ll never forget the conversation with my best friend in Spain last year (pictured below).

BeFunky_Nuria.jpgMe: “I’ve only seen one fireplace on our tour. At home, most people have a fireplace, even apartment complexes.”

Nuria: “So you light a fire and turn down the heater?”

Me: “Um, no.”

Nuria: “What do you do with the fire?”

Me: “Just sit there.”

Nuria: “What? Why?”

I laughed so hard.

p.s.- Nuria’s on my towel, invading my space. #FunnyEuropeans

Now… every time I start a fire, I think about Nuria and wish she could be there to understand why Americans are so infatuated with the fireplace.

If you’d like to contact Bert Williams, click here. His Facebook page has all kinds of great articles. Bert is also an amazing blog writer. Read some of his posts by clicking the link.