Make the Most of Your Home Improvement Investment

Home improvement is a constant endeavor for many homeowners. Whether it’s fixing a leaky faucet or adding an extra bedroom, there is always something to be done. But before you dive into a major remodel, make sure your goals and budget are ready. Home improvements can be expensive, and a mistake could cost you thousands of dollars in the long run. Before spending your hard-earned money, consider these expert tips and DIY advice to make the most of your investment.

In 2021, nearly half of Americans (47%) completed at least one home improvement project in the past two years, according to the American Housing Survey. The most common projects were refreshing shower areas and replacing vanities or toilets, as well as laying new tile and adding fixtures. Other common improvements include painting or repainting rooms, refinishing wood floors, and installing new lighting and appliances.

However, not all home improvements are created equal. Some projects have a much higher return on investment than others. And since most homeowners do not have an unlimited pool of cash, they must weigh the value of each potential upgrade with the costs.

Almost 20% of respondents to a NerdWallet survey who took on home improvement projects said they had to sacrifice other spending or sell items to afford them, and 14% tapped into or exhausted their emergency savings. Moreover, some borrowers used credit cards, went into debt or borrowed against their equity in their home to pay for the work.

Although the pandemic prompted some homeowners to take on bigger home improvement projects, most who planned upgrades cited other motivations. Respondents cited increasing the enjoyment of their homes (69%), making their homes more comfortable (54%), or simply wanting a change (49%).

Most surveyed homeowners plan to complete at least one home improvement project in the next two years. While most will be targeting low-cost, do-it-yourself projects, such as repainting a room or updating light fixtures, about 40% are considering bigger jobs, including renovating or adding a bathroom.

Homeowners should always be aware of the effect their renovations will have on future resale value, as they can significantly impact the final selling price of the property. For example, adding a hot tub or fountain in the backyard when other houses in the area have similar features may detract from the resale value of your house.

In addition, it is a good idea to consult with a real estate professional before taking on a big home improvement project that is not likely to yield a high ROI. These professionals can help you weigh the pros and cons of different projects, as well as identify any hidden costs or pitfalls that you might not be aware of. This will ensure that your project is both profitable and worthwhile. A professional can also help you find a contractor that fits your needs and budget. In general, you should hire contractors that are licensed and insured with experience working on similar projects to yours.

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