Home Improvements Large and Small

English: Home improvements, Stoney Middleton
Home improvements (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

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Regardless if you’re a brand new homeowner, or have lived in your residence for years, You’ve probably considered doing some home improvements.

The reasons people have for improvements to your home are numerous. You may just want to update a couple of things, or you may want to do a total overhaul of your living space, or maybe the improvements are necessary to sell your home or get a better appraisal for refinancing.

Whatever your reason, several considerations should be addressed before grabbing the power saw or paint bucket.

flower bed
flower bed (Photo credit: osde8info)


If you are just sprucing things up a tad, then go for the lesser cost improvement . Landscaping is a reasonably cheap but effective investment. Depending on how much you want to do, this can be a few dollars or a few thousand dollars, but it generally pays dividends when appraisal time rolls around.

Keeping your yard well groomed, adding some well placed flower beds, and planting the right shrub or hedges adds to your curb appeal and shows passers by that you take care of your home. Once installed, landscaping requires regular grooming to keep it looking nice. So, plan ahead for regular yard maintenance.

English: Weekend in a Finnish hot tub. Suomi: ...
Hot tub. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Other Outdoor Upgrades

An outdoor investment that doesn’t always pay off when you sell your home is a pool. The costs involved with pool installation are pretty high, and unless you get the exact right buyer, you probably won’t see a return on investment. So, be sure it’s an enhancement YOU want and will make use of regularly.

A hot tub or spa may be a better investment.

Other items to consider include windows, roof tiles or shingles, fencing, and the home’s exterior in general. Now you are looking at big ticket items that could be done in phases. Or, if you are doing a complete overhaul and have some money in the bank, then go for it.

If your are putting you home on the market, however, these items may be included in an appraisal. The appraiser may note whether they were done for repair or replacement, and affect values accordingly.

Inside the House

Consider things that may be eye sores or are not functioning properly. Repairing or replacing a toilet or broken faucet will not only save money over time, but it enhances your house’s value to you and everyone else.

Other less expensive repairs include laminate counters in bathrooms or kitchen, polishing or sanding wood floors, cabinets, adding contemporary paint to a room, or replacing broken doors, and cleaning carpets. These relatively simple fixes can add an extra sparkle to any home.

A great place to start is installing and/or upgrading baseboard woodworking, or adding some woodworking trim to ceilings. You can totally transform rooms that way, without actually remodeling.

Two Tone Kitchen Remodel
Two Tone Kitchen Remodel (Photo credit: summitdesignremodeling)

Remodeling Rooms

If you can afford it, both cost-wise and time-wise, consider an upgrade to a bathroom or your kitchen. These remodels are generally pretty expensive, but almost always pay off when you sell your home.

Additional repairs that have high investment returns – whether for your lifestyle or in a sale – are wood flooring, new energy efficient windows, additional insulation in the attic or basement spaces, or outdoor deck/patio improvements.

A Checklist

Final thoughts.

Costs, the time frame, the work to be accomplished and the reason for the remodel or upgrade should all be considered in your planning.

Check to see if you need any permits from your local area for the home improvement.

If you are hiring workers, make sure you check credentials or licenses, and check out other projects they have been involved with.

Of course, if you are up to it, many things can be done by you and your family.  You just need a little bit of elbow grease 🙂

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