Home improvement is a great way to make your home more enjoyable, functional and attractive. It also can help increase your property value if you plan to sell your home in the future. However, it’s important to be aware of the risks involved with home improvements.
Before you get started on any major projects, it’s crucial to do your research and determine what kind of work is needed and how much it will cost. This will save you time, money and stress down the road.
Start small and build from there — that’s the best way to avoid expensive mistakes. It’s also a good idea to hire a professional for a complete evaluation of your home before any work is done.
A professional home inspection can uncover problems that aren’t immediately obvious to you, such as termite infestations and outdated electrical systems. These hidden issues can lead to costly, long-term damage if not addressed quickly.
Be sure to choose a licensed, certified and insured contractor for your renovation project. The Maryland Home Improvement Commission (MHIC) requires that contractors have a license and an active MHIC license number before they begin any work.
It’s also a good idea to read reviews about local contractors and check for complaints. If you find any negative comments about a particular contractor, it’s better to look for a new one.
Before you start, take measurements of the space you’re working on and create a plan that includes all of your needs. This will help you budget for the entire project, and it’ll make sure your project doesn’t fall through the cracks.
When it comes to home improvements, it’s a good idea to prioritize what will add the most value. Updated kitchens and bathrooms, for example, are typically a safe bet when it comes to increasing your property’s value.
If you want to do something more ambitious, consider remodeling an existing room or adding a new one. If you’re unsure what kinds of changes will give your home the most bang for your buck, consider asking a real estate agent to do an appraisal of your home before you start any renovations.
For those who want to add some style and color to their homes, painting is a smart choice. Paint can make even a dull and tired-looking room feel fresh and modern, and it’s inexpensive and easy to do yourself.
Investing in quality materials is a smart move, too. If you’re putting in new hardwood floors, for instance, make sure to buy high-quality wood. Using the wrong type of flooring can ruin your home and affect its value.
It’s also a smart idea to get estimates from local contractors and compare them to the price you pay for doing the work yourself. Once you’ve figured out the costs of doing the work yourself, you can decide whether it’s worth the effort to do it yourself or to hire a professional.
The bottom line is that homeowners are spending a lot of money on home improvement. And that spending is fueled by several factors, including the economy, growth in homeowner equity and rock-bottom interest rates.