Starting a home improvement project can be both exciting and intimidating at the same time.
Most people have a laundry list of things they want to do. Paint the spare bedroom. Remodel the kitchen. Replace the tile and shower in the bathroom.
Whether you’re just touching up some paint or completely gutting and redoing an entire room, it’s a smart idea to know just what you intend to get out of this project.
If you are ready to tackle your home improvement list but are not sure where to start, we’ve put together some information to help you get going.
Why Are You Looking To Make Home Improvements?
Before you pick up that hammer or paintbrush, it’s important to keep the why in mind. If you are remodeling because you feel your home just needs some sprucing up, that’s one thing. If that’s the case, you have a lot more freedom on where to start.
But if you want to remodel because you are planning on selling in the near future, that’s a whole other story. Those looking to upgrade have to ask themselves this very important question:
What will add value to the home?
Creating two separate lists is a helpful idea. One list is what will increase the value to the home, and the other is what you want to do just for you. Small upgrades can also add to the value of the home as well.
Do You Know What’s What?
There are three ways to categorize home improvements.
First, there’s what’s necessary. These are the structural or safety items that must be done before anything else.
Next, there’s the list of things that you want to have done, or that would be really nice to have done. These are things such as changing light fixtures or appliances. They’ll make things look more beautiful but aren’t a real necessity at the moment.
The last list is a dream list. These are things that you dream about and maybe have a Pinterest board dedicated to. That library or game room? That can go here. So can the wine cellar or theater room. Once all the necessities and wants have been taken care of, you can start on this list.
What’s Your Budget?
Now that you have a better handle on where your priorities are, you can take a look at your budget. When you want to redo your entire kitchen but only have enough to replace one appliance, it’s time to rethink things.
Are your projects important enough to take out a home loan or withdraw from your retirement? If not, it may be best to do a little at a time. Also, if you are planning on selling anytime soon, what would the return be on your investment?
Having a major project completed on your home is not just a slight inconvenience. It can and will have an impact on your daily life. Know what the expected timeframe will be and see if that will fit into your family’s schedule. If you have family coming to visit next week, maybe it’s not the best time to plan that complete bathroom remodel.
Intensity And Invasiveness Of The Work
Are you ready to have tarps everywhere and workers tramping through your house? If it’s a small project, what would the work entail?
These projects affect everybody in the home so it may be a good idea to discuss this with everyone and make sure they are all on board with what it will entail.
Who Will Be Doing The Work?
If you are planning smaller projects and are ready to complete them on your own, with a little help from your friends, then make sure you know what you have and what you’ll need to buy to get the job done. If you are missing specialty tools and materials, it may be more cost effective – and not to mention less work – to hire someone who already has everything they need to do the job for you.
Home Improvement Tips
Here are a few quick tips to help you get jumpstarted.
Have a Plan
Rather than jumping from one project to the next, have a plan of action to help you – or your contractor – be as efficient as possible.
Tackle One Thing at a Time
Working on one room at a time will make sure things are done completely and don’t get lost in the shuffle of going back and forth.
Small Improvements Make a Difference
If you don’t have the time or money to do a complete remodel, focus on the finishes to make a difference. Change the faucets, light fixtures, paint and/or hardware in the bathroom or kitchen for a fresh look. In the bedroom, a fresh coat of paint, upgraded storage, or linens can make the world of difference.
The Number 1 Upgrade is…
The kitchen! Any expert would agree. Remember, small modifications make a big difference. Change the paint, customize the backsplash, upgrade the kitchen faucet, or update your appliances to stainless steel as they give out to give your kitchen a makeover for less.