Home improvement is any renovation, remodelling or upgrade that improves the function and/or value of a home. Home improvements are often a result of necessity (like fixing a leaky roof) or desire (like adding a new bathroom). The most common reasons people renovate their homes include: increasing the home’s resale value, making it more enjoyable to live in, or improving its ability to meet changing lifestyle needs.
Home repair and improvement projects can be expensive and time consuming. Many homeowners have a budget for home improvement projects and try to stick to it. In a NerdWallet survey, 80% of respondents reported that they typically spend the amount they’ve budgeted for home improvement projects. In contrast, a recent study by Consumer Reports found that 65% of surveyed homeowners go over their spending limits for remodeling projects.
Popular TV shows such as Bob Vila’s This Old House and Trading Spaces helped fuel the interest in DIY home improvement. And the growing popularity of online shopping has made it easier for consumers to find and buy the materials they need for projects.
However, not all home improvements add value to the home. In fact, some may even detract from the home’s resale potential. To avoid making costly mistakes, consider talking to a real estate professional before starting any major renovations. And, before hiring a contractor, make sure they have a valid MHIC license and a written contract. This is the best way to protect yourself from unscrupulous contractors.