Home Improvement – The Good and the Bad

Home improvement

Home improvement, also called home renovation or remodelling, is the process of upgrading or altering one’s home. It can be done to improve the living environment, increase the resale value or both. Home improvements may be as simple as painting, resurfacing or replacing the driveway or it can be more complicated like installing an addition, creating a garden, building a pool or renovating a kitchen or bathroom.

The most valuable home improvements are those that will make a house more comfortable and functional for a particular family or lifestyle. Kitchens, baths and energy-efficient updates are among the top projects that will boost a home’s resale value. However, some renovations will decrease a home’s resale worth, and it is important to understand these before breaking out the sledgehammer.

A study conducted by the National Association of Realtors found that the most popular home improvement projects are kitchen upgrades, bathroom additions or replacements, basement finishes and deck construction. The study looked at the number of homes that underwent these renovations in 2023 and how those homes performed on the real estate market afterward.

In a time when interest rates are historically low and homeowners are staying put, making improvements to their homes is an attractive option. But, there are some projects that are a waste of money.

It’s important for consumers to research contractors carefully before hiring them to complete a home improvement project. There can be a wide range of prices for the same project, and contractors vary in their quality of work, reliability and ability to meet deadlines. Consumers should compare price, reputation, experience and length of time in business.

Contractors should be licensed to do home improvements in their state. To ensure a homeowner is working with a licensed and insured contractor, he or she should always obtain a written contract for the job. The contract should contain a description of the work to be performed and the materials to be used. It should also include the approximate dates when the performance of the work will begin and when it will be substantially completed.

If a homeowner wants to add a tree to his or her property, it is important that the proper permits be obtained. The local government agency should inspect the work as it progresses and at the final stage to make sure that all aspects of the work are in compliance with city, county and state codes.

When it comes to landscaping, the type of trees selected can have a significant impact on a property’s curb appeal. To maximize resale value, homeowners should avoid planting exotic or non-native plants, which can be difficult to care for and maintain. It is also a good idea to choose easy-care shrubs and trees that will not drop large amounts of leaves. To improve a property’s curb appeal, homeowners should remove or trim any limbs that hang over the sidewalk or street. To reduce the amount of maintenance required, homeowners should consider planting evergreens that do not shed large twigs or branches in the winter and spring.