Home Improvement 101

Home improvement

Home improvement is the process of improving and remodeling a home. These projects can be done to increase the value of a home, make it more functional, or simply to improve the appearance of a residence. Home improvement projects can be expensive, but many have a good return on investment and add to the enjoyment of the home.

During the pandemic, Americans invested heavily in their homes. This renovation spending spurred an interest in DIY projects. Popular television shows such as Bob Vila’s This Old House helped to fuel this newfound fascination with DIY.

Some homeowners renovate for resale purposes, while others do it to create a better space for their family. The reason for a home improvement project can affect the result, but it’s important to remember that the most important reason to remodel your home is to improve its comfort and function. It’s not uncommon for homeowners to spend more time in their renovated homes than they do in unimproved ones.

A primary suite with a bathroom and walk-in closet is one of the most desirable improvements that will increase a home’s value and make it more appealing to potential buyers. However, homeowners should weigh the benefits against their own comfort and lifestyle before committing to such an extensive renovation. If you are renovating with resale in mind, talk to your real estate agent about the expected return on investment.

Most homeowners will have to take out a loan to pay for some or all of their home improvement projects. This can lead to debt, which reduces the amount of money you have available for other uses. It’s better to save for your projects and work with contractors that accept cash payments when possible. This way, you can avoid paying interest and can make sure your home improvement project is paid off before you sell your house.

Some home improvements are purely cosmetic, while others can boost your property’s energy efficiency and lower your utility costs. Adding a water heater, replacing windows, or installing insulation can help you save on heating and cooling bills while making your home more comfortable for your family. Some of these improvements also have tax advantages, as they can be deducted from your income taxes.

When planning a home improvement project, make sure you research and compare local contractors. Find out which contractors have the best reputations in your area. Ask for references from previous clients and see pictures of their past work. It’s important to find a contractor that has liability insurance in case a worker is injured on your property. You should also check whether they are licensed to work in your area, especially if you live in New York City, Suffolk, Nassau, Westchester, Putnam or Rockland counties. Licensed contractors will have identification badges and are insured against a work-related accident. If you’re working with an unlicensed contractor, you could face fines and other penalties. Also, if your project is more complex than you can handle, hire a licensed general contractor to do the work for you.

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