Home improvement is a popular pastime for many homeowners. It can involve a variety of projects that improve the aesthetics of a space or make it more functional. But before a homeowner starts tearing down walls and pulling out carpet, they should consider their options and the potential return on investment for their project.
According to the American Housing Survey, about 3 in 5 homeowners have taken on some sort of home improvement project in the past two years, compared with only 2 in 5 who had done so in 2022. While some projects may have to be done for safety reasons, such as fixing an electrical problem or replacing a leaky roof, other improvements can help boost a home’s value when it comes time to sell.
The biggest factor that determines a home’s value is its location, followed by its size and age. So, whether you are looking to add some curb appeal or a major renovation, it’s best to focus on projects that will appeal to the majority of people. This means a simple coat of paint or refinishing the hardwood floors are likely to have a bigger impact than a new kitchen.
A new front door, for example, can have a dramatic impact on a home’s appearance and can increase a property’s security. And a fresh coat of paint can make a room look new and bright. Other low-cost projects that can add to a home’s value include replacing the garage door and installing a smart thermostat.
When it comes to high-ticket home improvement projects, a big part of the return on investment depends on what materials are used. For example, a marble bathroom vanity or granite countertops may be worth the extra cost for a homeowner who plans to stay in their home for a long time. But it’s important to remember that not all home renovations are created equal, and some can actually hurt a house’s value, such as adding an outdoor kitchen or hot tub that’s too far removed from the rest of the home.
Homeowners should also be wary of ‘grey market’ contractors who may operate without a license. A licensed contractor is an individual or entity who has passed a background check and is authorized to perform work on a home. Homeowners should always ask to see proof of a license and insurance before hiring someone for home improvements.
Finally, homeowners should be aware of how their home improvements can affect their taxes. Depending on the project, it may be necessary to file a home improvement tax credit form with their tax return.
A lot of homeowners are watching TV shows like Fixer Upper or This Old House and feeling inspired to tackle some home improvements. However, it’s one thing to watch a show and another to get your hands dirty. Before you dive into a renovation, read up on some of the most popular home improvements and which ones are worth the investment.