Home Improvement 101
Home improvement is the process of improving or renovating a home. It can include maintenance tasks such as painting and cleaning, as well as major projects such as adding an addition or installing a new kitchen or bathroom. There are many benefits to home improvement, including increasing the value of a house and making it more comfortable to live in.
Since the 1970s, home improvement has been a popular pastime for homeowners. It was stimulated by the popularity of television shows such as Bob Vila’s This Old House and the rise of big box stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s, which offer do-it-yourself customers a wide range of options. Many home-center chains also offer a wide variety of workshops and seminars for DIY homeowners.
There are several ways to improve your home, and some methods are more cost-effective than others. For example, replacing the flooring in a room can increase its appeal and add value to your home. Other home improvement projects that you can do on a budget include painting, re-grouting tile, and power washing the exterior of your house.
However, be careful not to overspend on your home improvements. It is important to get a good estimate from a contractor before beginning any work. Otherwise, you may end up spending more than you can afford and potentially decreasing your home’s value. Additionally, be sure to choose projects that will appeal to prospective buyers. Otherwise, they will not want to buy your house.
The most common way to pay for a home improvement project is through cash from savings. According to the American Housing Survey, this method funded 76% of all home improvement projects in the past two years. However, more expensive projects were often paid for with other sources. These included home equity loans, contractor arranged financing, and credit cards.
Some home improvements don’t increase your property value at all, or even decrease it. For instance, a hot tub or fountain in the backyard might not be appealing to someone else who is looking for a home. Likewise, an overly customized kitchen could be offputting to someone who has different tastes.
When choosing contractors to perform home improvement work, it is best to find a licensed professional. Some state laws require that contractors or subcontractors be licensed by the department of consumer affairs or other licensing authority. A license number must appear on all contracts, invoices, and work orders. Furthermore, all work must be inspected by the local code enforcement agency before it is considered complete. Additionally, the contract should include a detailed warranty.