Home improvement is a massive industry that includes the sale of building materials, appliances and decor. It also includes the services provided by contractors and tradespeople who help to build, install and upgrade homes. The industry is expected to reach excellent growth results in the coming years, especially due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the increased desire by consumers for a comfortable and modern home.
It’s important to choose wisely when it comes to home improvements. Not all projects add value to your home and some may even detract from its resale value. It’s best to consult with an expert before committing to any major upgrades or remodels. A professional can provide you with a detailed list of what improvements will add the most value to your home.
Some of the most popular home improvement projects include sparkling bathroom overhauls, kitchen renovations and basement finishes. These high-ticket home improvements can cost thousands of dollars and usually offer only a 60% return on investment when you sell your home, according to Remodeling magazine’s annual Cost vs. Value Report. Other projects that can increase your home’s energy efficiency and reduce utility bills are adding insulation, replacing old windows and installing a smart thermostat.
A homeowner should always have a written contract before any work begins or any money is exchanged. This is required by Maryland law. The contract should state the date the work will be completed and provide a payment schedule. It should also state the contractor’s name, address, phone number and MHIC license number. Consumers should avoid any contractors who do not have a valid MHIC license number.
When choosing a contractor to perform your home improvements, you should select a firm with a good reputation in the local community. Check references and ask for referrals before hiring someone. You can also find reputable firms through online reviews. Consumers should also make sure the contractor is licensed and insured.
While it’s tempting to renovate your entire home, you should only do so if it will add to the overall value of your property and meet your needs. Adding an extra bedroom, bathroom or living space can help you sell your home later, but it’s important to balance that with your family’s comfort and lifestyle.
If you have a small budget, don’t be afraid to take on some DIY home improvement projects. Painting, re-grouting tile and power washing your home’s exterior can add valuable curb appeal and improve the look of your property without spending a lot of money. It’s also important to keep up with minor maintenance tasks like replacing worn doorknobs, cleaning the gutters and repairing sidewalk cracks. Neglected maintenance items will be discovered by a home inspector and could result in expensive repair costs or, worse, a lower selling price for your home. If you are considering a large home improvement project, be sure to consult with a certified and experienced contractor. They can help you plan and execute the job safely and within your budget.