Home Improvement 101

Home improvement

Home improvement, also called home renovation or remodeling, is the process of improving the interior and exterior of a residence. This may include, but is not limited to, painting, flooring, tiling, and other decorative improvements. Home improvement projects are undertaken for a variety of reasons; personal style, increasing the function and comfort of a living space, or adding value to the property for resale.

Home improvements can be costly, and the decision to do them should not be taken lightly. It is important to research the various options and consult with a professional before making any decisions. A good place to start is with a home improvement magazine or online resource. Also, many local associations specific to home remodeling and housing have publications available. Finally, a search of the internet can provide a wealth of information as well as a list of qualified contractors to perform the work.

In addition to the cost of labor and materials, home improvement projects often require a significant time commitment. This is especially true of larger projects such as kitchens and bathrooms. It is often helpful to have a clear plan and schedule before beginning the project. This will help to keep the project on target and reduce the possibility of unforeseen expenses.

It is also helpful to consult with other homeowners who have completed similar projects. This will give the homeowner ideas and suggestions that will improve the quality of the final product. In addition, the homeowners may be able to share tips that will save money as well as time.

Generally, the best and most cost effective home improvements are those that make the house more functional and attractive. A few examples of these include kitchen or bath remodels, new energy efficient windows and doors, and a deck or patio build. These projects will usually return a high percentage of the investment.

In more cyclical times, it is wise to focus on smaller projects that will enhance the curb appeal of the home. This could include things like fresh paint, landscaping, or adding a fence. It is important to remember that the overall look and feel of a home is very important to most prospective buyers. A well-kept and well-functioning home will always have a higher resale value than an older, rundown or dirty property.

Regardless of the type of home improvement project, it is critical that all work be performed by a licensed and insured contractor. In addition, a contract should be drawn up containing a payment schedule and a detailed description of the work to be performed. The homeowner should also be sure to update their home insurance policy after completing any home improvement projects. This will ensure that they are covered in the event of a claim due to damage caused by the work they have had done. It will also ensure that they are receiving adequate coverage for any increase in value that the project may add to their property.

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