Home Improvement 101
Home improvement refers to the repair, maintenance or restoration of residential real property. It can include painting, resurfacing of pavement and driveways, installing or repairing fences, decks, porches, additions and other structures.
In general, home improvements increase the value of a home, prolong its life or adapt it to new uses. They also reduce energy costs and can yield tax credits at the time of sale.
The number of Americans undergoing home improvements has increased in recent years, especially among older homeowners who are more financially capable to pay for renovations. The average American household spent nearly half a trillion dollars on home improvement projects during the survey period, from 2019 to 2021.
Some home improvement projects give you a higher return on investment than others, says Fisher. For instance, adding trim to windows can make the home more attractive and add a lot of value.
If you’re considering a major upgrade to your house, consider putting it on a line of credit and paying for it over several months. Most credit cards offer introductory 0% APR periods of 12 months, so you can avoid paying interest for the full year while you pay off your project.
When it comes to safety, you should always use caution when doing work on your home. Whether it’s doing electrical work or plumbing, you should always check for possible hazards that could cause damage to your property or endanger yourself or others.
To find a qualified contractor, read local reviews, ask friends and family, and look at multiple contractors’ prices for the work you want done. Then, get a written contract that includes the terms of payment and warranties on materials and workmanship.