Home improvement is the modification or repair of a residential or non-commercial building. The practice covers a wide range of projects, including painting, landscaping, plumbing and electrical work, putting in a swimming pool, and building additions. It also involves improving the energy efficiency of a house. The popularity of television shows such as Bob Vila’s This Old House has contributed to the growth of the industry and the culture of DIY.
Many homeowners undertake home improvements to make their house more comfortable. They may need to add a bedroom for an expanding family or install an outdoor kitchen to entertain friends and neighbors. Such renovations often boost a house’s value when it is sold, although the return on investment varies with the type of project and its location.
The home improvement industry is a multibillion-dollar sector that includes retailers selling building materials, appliances and other supplies, as well as contractors and specialty tradesmen. The COVID-19 pandemic spurred a surge in this sector, with consumers spending money on fixing and decorating their homes. The market also includes companies providing financing for such projects, as well as companies that offer advice and services related to home improvement.
Remodeling your home can be a fun and rewarding project, but it’s important to plan carefully before you begin. If you’re not careful, you could end up overspending and putting yourself in debt. Moreover, you might do renovations that don’t increase the home’s resale value or even improve its usable space.
A few tips can help you avoid the pitfalls and get the most value for your home improvement dollar.
First, it’s important to establish a budget for the project and stick to it. You should only spend the amount you can afford without tapping into your emergency savings or going into debt. You should also choose materials that are functional and will look good for the long term. For example, don’t opt for high-end fixtures when low-end alternatives will do just as well and cost a fraction of the price.