Home improvement is any renovation, upgrade or repair that enhances the function, appearance or value of a home. This includes interior and exterior work such as painting, paving, driveways, porches and decks, gazebos, pools and additions. It also encompasses landscaping, awnings and fences. Home improvements are also repairs that need to be made for safety or health reasons such as electrical problems or a leaky roof.
The 2022 Remodeling Impact Report from the National Association of Realtors indicates that homeowners are renovating their homes for a variety of reasons. Besides making the home more functional for their families, some people are renovating to add value to the house and make it easier to sell when they decide to move. Others are doing renovations that will help with energy efficiency which can bring rebates from the electric company or government in some areas.
Many of the renovations surging in popularity are focused on outdoor projects such as deck construction and installing a fence. Others are aimed at upgrading the look of the house including fresh paint and changing light switches. Some upgrades can have a high return at resale such as a master suite with bathroom, walk-in closet and dressing area. Others such as marble flooring are more of a luxury that may not appeal to all buyers.
It’s important to research contractors and ask for references. It is also a good idea to check with the Better Business Bureau to see if there are any complaints against a contractor. All contracts for home improvement should be in writing and signed before work begins or any money is paid. A deposit should not be more than 1/3 of the total contract price. It’s also a good idea to find out whether the contractor has insurance in case something goes wrong.