Home improvement is a popular pastime for many homeowners. It can include projects that are done for aesthetic reasons, such as a fresh coat of paint or a new deck, as well as upgrades to improve functionality, such as upgrading kitchens or bathrooms or replacing worn carpeting.
Home improvements can add to a home’s overall value and can increase the chances of selling it at a higher price or in less time than expected. However, it’s important to be aware of how much certain home improvements cost and which ones will pay off the most when it comes to resale or property tax deductions.
The popularity of television shows like Fixer Upper and This Old House has inspired many homeowners to take on renovations that can enhance their living space. For example, adding a sunroom or an outdoor patio can give the family more room to hang out and entertain guests. In addition to creating a relaxing and enjoyable environment, these types of home improvements can also increase the value of a property.
Other reasons for completing home improvement projects are to repair issues that cannot be ignored, such as a leaking roof or an electrical problem. These issues can pose a serious risk to the safety of the family members and the structure of the home. In these cases, it is necessary to make the repairs as quickly as possible in order to avoid costly consequences.
Increasingly, homeowners are choosing to renovate their homes in order to stay more comfortable and to add features that will appeal to prospective buyers. For example, a master suite with its own bathroom and walk-in closet can significantly increase a home’s resale value. However, a homeowner should be cautious when it comes to making improvements that are not in keeping with the style of the neighborhood.
It is also important for a homeowner to select the right contractor for the job. Ideally, the contractor will have experience with the type of project being completed and be licensed in the applicable jurisdictions. In addition, the contractor should be insured in case an injury or damage occurs during the work. The contractor should provide a written contract for the work, which should detail an estimated timeline and payment schedule as well as specific details about the materials to be used, including brands and types.
According to a September survey by NerdWallet, almost three-fourths of homeowners who have undertaken home improvement projects in the past two years say they were able to pay for them without tapping into savings or going into debt. And 80% of those who reported doing such projects in 2020 said they stuck to their budgets, compared with 76% who responded similarly in 2018. For those looking to start a home improvement project but are not sure where to begin, NerdWallet has tools to help homeowners estimate how much certain projects will cost and which will have the most return on investment.