Things to Consider When Planning a Home Improvement Project
Home improvement, or renovation, is a broad term that encompasses the sale of building materials, appliances, decor and other home enhancements, along with the services provided by contractors, tradespeople and other workers. The home improvement industry is a booming one, as a result of homeownership’s increasing importance in the economy.
When you’re ready to undertake a home renovation project, there are a few key things to consider. You’ll want to decide whether you’re planning a do-it-yourself (DIY) or professional upgrade, what type of work you need done and how much you can afford to spend on it.
When deciding on a home improvement project, it’s important to make sure that it will look good once the job is complete. If you’re not sure what type of paint to use or which flooring will work best in your kitchen, for example, it’s a good idea to consult a home designer before making any changes.
Aesthetics should also be considered when choosing the right contractor for your needs. The best contractors will be familiar with the types of projects that you’re hoping to have completed and will have the experience to get the job done well.
The most important aspect of any renovation is to make sure that your home is safe while the project is underway. For instance, if you’re changing the plumbing or electrical system, you’ll need to make sure that there are no hazards that could cause serious injury or even damage the property. Likewise, if you’re replacing or upgrading the roof, it’s a good idea to ensure that there are no leaks and that you have the correct permits and licenses to do so.
Depending on the nature of your home improvement project, you may be eligible for federal and state tax breaks. For instance, energy-efficient upgrades that lower your utility bills can qualify for a tax credit when you sell the house. You can also deduct the cost of capital improvements, such as adding new windows, to your taxable income.
You can find out if you are eligible for any such tax breaks by contacting your local government agency. The agency will be able to give you specific details and advice, or refer you to a qualified professional.
Budget and Savings
The cost of home improvement projects can vary widely, depending on the extent of the work and the contractor you hire to perform it. In most cases, it’s a good idea to set a budget for your project before you begin work and stick to it. If you’re paying for a contractor, you should also have a written contract that outlines the agreed-upon price and payment schedule.
If you’re hiring a professional to do the work, you should make sure that they are licensed and insured. If they are not, you should seek alternative sources of a contractor who is.
A contract should be signed by both you and the contractor before the work begins or any money is paid. It should include the agreed-upon price, a timeline for the completion of the work and any warranties that the contractor will provide on materials or workmanship.