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Home Improvement – Getting the Most Out of Your Projects

Home improvement refers to any kind of remodeling, repair or addition that improves a home’s comfort or functionality. Examples of home improvements include installing a new kitchen or bathroom, building a deck or patio, adding a pool, painting the house and landscaping the yard. The term also encompasses any work done to make a house energy-efficient, such as replacing old windows or adding insulation. Home improvements can be expensive, but they often produce a high return on investment and help homeowners save money.

In the United States, about three in five homeowners have taken on a home improvement project during the pandemic, according to a recent NerdWallet survey. But despite the desire to upgrade their living spaces, many homeowners are cautious about hiring contractors and are worried about safety during the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, 53% of those surveyed said they wouldn’t allow home repair/improvement professionals into their homes due to concerns about the spread of the virus.

As a result, some homeowners are not taking on home improvement projects, which can be a mistake as a home that isn’t well maintained can lose value. Other homeowners are delaying the completion of planned projects due to financial constraints. Regardless of the reason, it’s important for homeowners to plan carefully and execute their home improvement projects wisely so they can get the most out of them.

While some home improvements don’t always add value to your property, a little care and research can ensure that the ones you do choose will be worthwhile. The best way to ensure that your home improvement projects are a success is to hire the right contractor for the job. Before you select a contractor, write down a list of the specific work you want completed. This will help you negotiate with multiple contractors, lock in firm prices and avoid surprises down the road. It will also help you ferret out unscrupulous contractors who may try to sell you additional work that you don’t need or want.

A good home improvement contractor will be licensed, insured and certified by the local government. In addition, a reliable home improvement contractor will have references from past clients who can attest to the quality of his or her work. They should also be knowledgeable about the local codes and permits required for your specific area.

When you’re ready to start your next home improvement project, there are several ways to finance it. Some lenders specialize in offering mortgages for home improvements and others offer personal loans that don’t require a down payment. Whatever route you take, be sure to compare rates and terms and choose a lender that offers competitive pricing for home improvement loans.

If you’re handy with tools, you can save a significant amount of money by doing some of your home improvement projects yourself. But some tasks, such as plumbing repairs and roof replacements, should be left to the experts. In order to stick to a budget, it’s essential to accurately estimate the cost of a project in the beginning and add a 20% buffer for unexpected costs.