Home improvement is the term used to describe renovations, remodeling, upgrading and restoring or modifying residential property. It includes projects such as repairing a leaky faucet, replacing the doors to your home, refinishing your hardwood floors or adding a new window to your bedroom.
It also includes the installation of energy efficient devices, and even installing solar panels or other renewable energy options in your house. It can be a good way to make your home more environmentally friendly while increasing its resale value.
The latest edition of the American Housing Survey, released every two years, finds that a majority of homeowners are spending on home improvements. This is the result of a variety of factors, including rock-bottom interest rates, the growth of older homeowners who have more equity in their homes and a desire to improve the home’s physical appearance.
Despite these benefits, there is a dark side to spending money on your home. Not all improvements add value and not all can help you recoup your investment.
Some home improvement projects actually detract from your house’s value because they are not designed to increase your enjoyment of the space. For example, if you install a patio off of the kitchen but don’t place it in a strategic location and are not sure how to use it, it may be an enticing addition, but will decrease your home’s resale value.
The best thing to do is to hire a professional contractor who will provide you with a detailed plan for the work that will be done and a payment schedule. This way you will know what to expect and you won’t have to worry about misunderstandings in the middle of the project.