Home improvement is any kind of renovation or repair that adds value to a residence. This includes anything from paving or resurfacing your driveway to installing an entire new kitchen or bathroom. It also encompasses gardening, lawn care and any improvement to a swimming pool or gazebo. Home improvements are usually taxable, but you can often avoid paying the sales tax by filing for a home improvement exemption with your local department of finance and taxes.
If you are thinking of improving your home, it is important to do some research before hiring someone to perform the work. It is a good idea to only work with licensed contractors that have business references and have been checked for complaints against them. Additionally, it is a good idea to ask for proof that the contractor has liability and worker’s compensation insurance.
In addition, all home improvement contractors should be registered with the state and have a valid license to do work in your house. In order to register, contractors are required to pass a test on home improvement law and general business competency. In Maryland, a contractor’s registration number should be preprinted on the contract with any home improvement project.
One of the most popular home improvement projects is adding an extra bedroom or bathroom. This can be a great way to increase the value of your house and make it more livable for family members and guests. However, it is important to keep in mind that this type of renovation will be a significant expense and will require some planning before beginning the project.
It is also important to consider the resale potential of your home when making any major changes. Adding an extra bathroom or bedroom may not be worth the cost if it will not improve your chances of selling your home in the future. It is a good idea to talk with a real estate agent before investing in any high-end home improvements.
Smaller, less expensive projects that can have a big impact include refreshing shower areas with new fixtures and paint or replacing dated vanities and toilets. New lighting can also make a huge difference in the look of your home. Replacing dated windows with energy-efficient options can also be a good investment that will pay for itself in lower utility bills. Another simple project is updating switch plates and adding decorative touches such as crown molding, baseboards or corbels.