In the past, home improvements might have been lower on your list of priorities than, say, taking a family vacation. But since the coronavirus pandemic, many people find themselves spending more time at home, making the idea of transforming that spare room into an office or adding an extra bedroom more appealing. In fact, 20% of homeowners plan to use their tax refunds for home renovations this year.
Home improvement can be a fun way to add value to your property and make it more enjoyable for you and your family. It can also be expensive, so it’s important to budget appropriately and consider the return on investment for each project. But it’s also important to think through each project carefully to avoid any surprises down the road.
According to a recent survey by Chase Home Lending, homeowners who complete a DIY home improvement project are more likely to report satisfaction with the results than those who hire professionals. In addition, the survey found that homeowners who complete projects themselves have a greater sense of joy when compared to those who have professionals do the work for them.
This survey was based on an American Housing Survey of owner-occupied households, which was conducted between June and November 2019. Respondents were asked to report the cost of home improvement projects they had done in the previous two years, and their joy scores for those projects.
The survey found that 80% of homeowners stick to the budget they set for their home improvement projects. This is a big step up from last year, when only 76% of homeowners reported sticking to their budgets. However, some home improvement projects can wind up being much more expensive than expected. For example, a plumbing leak that leads to rotten subfloors or a roof that is hiding shoddy repair work can add up quickly.
A home improvement contractor should provide you with a contract that includes all the information related to your project. This contract should include a description of the work to be performed, materials and their costs and a time frame for when the work will be completed. It should also contain any warranties for materials and workmanship.
In order to protect yourself, a good home improvement contractor will have their name, address and MHIC (Molding, Heating, Cooling & Insulation) license number preprinted on the contract before starting work. In addition, the contract should be signed by both parties before any work begins or money is paid.
The most popular home improvement projects are sparkling bathrooms, followed by kitchens and basement remodels. But remember, not all home improvements will boost your property value when it comes time to sell. Buyer preferences and local market conditions can make or break your return on investment. For that reason, it’s a good idea to talk to a real estate agent about which home improvements are most likely to pay off when the time comes to sell.