5 Easy Spring Home Improvement Projects

5 Easy Spring Home Improvement Projects

Spring is the sign of new life and new beginnings, and even your homes can reflect that change! And while you may be looking into heavy renovations such as gutter cleanup or roof repairs, even your smaller furnishings can also use a little updating to make your home more spring-like. Spring into action this Spring with these home renovation tips that can take your home to a breezier, lighter atmosphere befitting the season!

  1. Experiment with character

Wall textures such as exposed brick or grunge walls and accent walls are all the range these days. They are great accents that can bring life to a space, can make for a great background (especially for pictures!) and can add character to otherwise plain walls. Peel-and-stick wall panels (for textures) and peel-and-stick paper (for accents) are great for this job as they won’t need you to take down a wall and have it rebuilt with your chosen texture – just peel and stick to your existing walls, and they’re up!

This can also be done with floors. Peel-and-stick tiles or wood plank flooring can give your house a different kind of edge and personality depending on what character you’re going for, and they can make the whole room look refreshed and new as well.

  1. Update your fixtures

Sometimes, a little difference between your fixtures can mean the difference between a suffocating, drab home to an airy, comfortable one. The style, color, and the way you group together fixtures can drastically affect the way any room looks with them. A big player in this are light fixtures: even changing the tint of light that you get can make your room look more open and bright as opposed to dimmer lights that would probably work more with colder seasons.

If you’re not ready to invest in new couches or cabinets, consider replacing some accent fixtures such as lights and other small decorations for ones that fit the season. Changing sofa covers or having cabinets, chairs, and tables repainted can also be inexpensive ways to add a new image to your home!

If you’re not sure that the pieces you pic go well together or if you can find them all in one place, don’t worry. As it is one of the most commonly-bought items online, home furnishing and decors that you need can be found with a few clicks. The internet can also help you find what you’re looking for based on your past searches, interest, and preferences.

  1. Lighten up your windows

A key characteristic of changing your home atmosphere lies with your windows. When they are closed or accentuated with heavy drapery, it can look heavy, cold or drab. Heavy curtains are perfect for colder seasons, but for a season such as Spring, lightweight curtains are the way to go. Curtains made of lace or other thin cloths (often in light shades as well) can let more light to flow into the room, as well as added ventilation from outside. For an added touch of nature, you can also go with bamboo shades, or even bold and graphic with geometric panels.

  1. Update even small details

Even the simplest details in your home can make enough of a difference. Vases, statuettes, frames and even mirrors can change the way the entire room looks and feels depending on how well they accentuate a certain theme or mood. In fact, even a simple space such as a living room have certain points that need to be taken into consideration when redesigning it.

And even if you’ve never really thought about it, handle pulls and knobs can also affect the way the overall room looks. Old-fashioned, worn, and dirty handles can spoil an otherwise freshly-updated cabinet or door. And contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to use eccentric, out-of-this-world styles for them to stand out. As long as they complement the rest of their surroundings, you’re well on your way to having a visually-appealing room!

  1. Don’t neglect your backyard (or your small outdoor space)!

Spring is all about enjoying the great outdoors, and that goes without saying that your outdoors should reflect that, too! Plant flowers and shrubs, have some outdoor seating or lounge, and even decorate it with outdoor lights and garden knick-knacks such as bunny or fairy statuettes! For those who don’t have rolling lawns, project the image of nature with a few potted plants – the more colorful, the better! If you are worried that you have very little time for maintaining plants with your lifestyle, don’t worry – there are plenty of low-maintenance plants that you can cultivate!

Spring is definitely the best time to update your house. From the warm, cozy, but heavy setup from last winter to the airy, bright and cheery vibes of spring, it’s like being one with the change! So go ahead and give new life to your homes for the turn of the season!

Guest Post By:

I am Carlton Coleman and I am the owner of SIGN WITHIN superstore, which is an e-commerce business under the umbrella of the The Sign Within Academy, LLC.  This company seeks to not only provide an online shopping experience with great deals, discounts, and rebates but to partner and support non-profit organizations that speak to hearts, stretch minds and serve the whole of humanity to further their causes.  I am a strong believer that you make a living by what you get but you make a life by what you give.

3 Factors To Consider Before Your Home Renovation Consultation

3 Factors To Consider Before Your Home Renovation Consultation

Renovating the home is a way to change the appearance of any aspect without completely starting over. There are several reasons as to why you might want to renovate the home, such as increasing the comfort level for family members or adding more space so that children have room to spread out. You can do some of the work on your own to save some money, but there are a few things that you might want to leave to a professional construction company, such as electrical renovations or improvements with plumbing. Before you meet with any contractor or talk about a renovation project, there are some factors that you want to consider.

Work Alone Or Hire Help

One of the first things that you want to do is decide whether you want to do the work on your own or let someone else tackle the task. You can save a lot of money if you do everything yourself, but you have to keep in mind that you might spend more in the long run if you mess something up or don’t get something installed the right way. If you’ve done any kind of the work before that you want to do to the home, then you can probably do the basics or even some of the detailed aspects, but major work should be done by a professional. You also need to think about the budget that you have to work with as this will play a part in exactly what you can do in the home and the details that you can add.

Consulting With Professionals

It might be best to talk to a dedicated construction administration to get a few ideas on what you could do in the home and what might need to wait until you have a bit more to invest. A benefit of working with a consultant is that you’ll have someone on your side who understands the latest concepts, trends and methods of renovating. The consultant can work with other people who are able to work with different aspects of the project, such as electricians and painters, in order to get the job done as quickly as possible. You’ll be working with someone who has experience in the area of construction and will have more info, where you might not know everything in the field. The person will understand all of the building codes and the other standards that you need to abide by in order to renovate.

The Right Timing

Completing a renovation project needs to be done at the right time. If your family can’t be inconvenienced with a bedroom that is being painted or that has new floor being installed or a kitchen that has drywall being replaced or new cabinets being installed, then you might want to wait until everyone is on the same page. A contractor will be able to have the job done in a shorter amount of time because there are more people to work at once, and the people who are working have done the jobs so many times that they know the easiest ways to complete a project. However, it will still involve being out of a room for at least a few hours each day until the renovation is complete. If the bathroom is being renovated, you need to be ready to make sacrifices by using someone else’s bathroom or have a second bathroom ready in the home.

A renovation in the house can be challenging, but it can be one of the most rewarding things as you will have a new look in the home. Think about the reasons why you want to renovate and the budget you have to work with. Take pictures of the home before and after to see the benefits of what you’ve done.

How To Hire A Good Home Improvement Professional

home improvement

Unless you’re an extreme DIY-er, there will probably come a time when you need to hire a home improvement professional. Whether you want to have your entire house redone or just need some touch-ups, you’ll want to make sure that anyone you hire for the job is definitely the right person. Before you sign a contract or hand over any money, make sure you do the following to hire a good home improvement professional:

Ask for recommendations. Family, friends, neighbors, and other acquaintances can be a great source of information on the quality of a home improvement professional. You can also look online for reviews of a professional and his/her services. A good subcontractor will be easy to contact, ready and willing to answer questions, and know how to connect with general contractors and other subcontractors in the area. Ask for customer testimonials, samples of the professional’s past work, and contracts you can read through in advance.

Shop around. Remember that you get what you pay for — sometimes the cheapest option is not the best. On the flip side, you don’t necessarily have to pay a mint to find a quality contractor or subcontractor. Plan ahead and give yourself time to find the right home improvement professional at a good price. If you’re unsure what a good price is for your particular project, do some research online and ask for a cost breakdown for your project.

Make sure your professional is fully licensed and credentialed. Most subcontractors, such as electricians and plumbers, need to be licensed according to state and local laws. Their license information should be either on display in the office or readily available when you ask. You should also look for professionals who are certified or recognized in their field — look for membership in groups such as the National Association of the Remodeling Industry or the National Association of Home Builders as well as professional niche associations (plumbing, electrical, home design, etc.).

Don’t hire an uninsured contractor. Insurance protects you and it protects them in case of any unforeseen disaster or problem. Don’t be afraid to ask for proof of insurance or have it written into your contract.

Be honest about your budget. The last thing you want is to have to bail on a home improvement project halfway through or go into debt to finish it. Know what you’re able to pay before you sign any contract and make sure that your contractor knows as well. Make sure that your professional respects your limits and will not make financial decisions on a project without your input and approval.

Make sure anyone you hire is easy to contact and communicate with. You should be in touch with a lead person on any large project and be able to ask them questions and contact them as needed (during business hours). A contractor or subcontractor that doesn’t communicate or is hard to get in touch with may make your project harder to complete on time and within budget.

Do your due diligence before signing a contract. Make sure you read a contract in full and are completely happy with the terms. Check with the Better Business Bureau and your local Chamber of Commerce to make sure there are no complaints against the contractor or the company itself.

Ask if the professional offers a warranty. If anything about your home improvement project fails or breaks after completion, you need to know how to fix it. Not all home improvement professionals offer warranties on their work, but remember that it may be worth paying a little extra for the warranty.

Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Scaffold Store, the favorite and trusted scaffold supplier of the largest contractors.

House Remodeling Tips

kitchen

You bought a new house and it requires some adaptations in order to meet your needs? Or your old house simply needs some refreshment? Regardless of which situation you are in, home remodeling can be overwhelming, especially if you haven’t planned everything well and chosen your battles carefully. When selecting renovation projects, you have to consider usability, investment and potential return of investment (e.g. the project should either save you money in the future, or should increase the value of your home should you decide to sell). Sounds pretty complicated, right? We’ll help you with these clever remodeling tips.

Find good workforce

If you manage to find quality workers, you have already done the most important part of the job. Experienced remodelers will be able to give you advice on the most prudent projects, best materials and do their job efficiently at a fair cost. Consult the web, but also ask your friends and family for word-of-mouth recommendations. When you choose them, make sure you communicate all of your ideas and write a detailed contract.

Make extra space

Almost all remodeling projects have one clear goal: to add more space to the property. That can be done by tearing down the wall between the kitchen and the living room. If you want to go beyond that and make an extra room (family room, guest room, bathroom…) you can either go up or down. One of the greatest intricacies you can face here is enabling easy access to the space, so if you’re upgrading your attic, you’ll need more than step ladder.

Do the kitchen remodeling first

This is a project that meets both ROI demands: if you do it with energy-saving on your mind, you can cut your bills in the future, and regardless of the size of your project, you will still be able to increase the value of your property. Namely, even a minor kitchen remodeling can recoup about 80% of the invested money, says  research done by Remodeling magazine. Some small-scale projects you can pull off are repainting the cabinets, replacing the handles and pulls, painting, replacing the ordinary light bulbs with energy-efficient ones, getting a new countertop and adding a backsplash.

Do other projects that increase ROI

It’s an unwritten rule that the projects that add to the total price of your house, also increase its functionality and improve its aesthetics, so even if you’re not selling, you’ll benefit from these renovations:

Increase the curb appeal

Finally, the house’s exterior also plays a major role in the overall picture. Here are some things you can do to improve the appearance of your outdoor space:

  • Pool restoration: There is nothing cooler than owning a pool in your backyard, but if it isn’t updated for decades, it is about time to do it. The best thing about this project is that you don’t need much to do it: a bucket of swimming pool paint can instantly revive it. You can go beyond that and build a deck around the pool, make a mulch or rock border and plant small bushes and perennials, etc.
  • Wooden deck addition: Adding a wooden deck is one of those projects that can add value to your property, but it can also present a beautiful place to spend time with your family, read a good book or simply enjoy the fresh air.
  • Fixing the driveway: A cracked driveway is not a very appealing sight. Solve this by applying a driveway sealer.
  • Painting the exterior: painting a worn out façade will instantly transform your house and make it look newer.

House renovation is indubitably a major project. It can require a lot of time, money and patience, but take it one step at the time, and you will make it.

Guest Post By:

Amelia Atkins

“Amelia is an author on the site Smooth Decorator and now a fresh architecture student.  Love for architecture and design runs in her family ever since she can remember.”

 

 

 

Remodeling for Revenue: How to Flip Your House to Increase Its Value

Remodeling for Revenue How to Flip Your House to Increase Its Value

Flipping homes can be an effective way to make money from real estate. However, you need to know what types of upgrades will yield the highest returns on your investment before you decide to make them. Here are just some strategies that you should employ to ensure that you maximize your profits from each flip:

More Living Space Generally Means a Higher Price

In some areas, homes are priced per square foot. Therefore, adding more living space will translate to a higher asking price for the house. Some ideas for adding more space include finishing the attic or basement. In some cases, adding an egress to an already finished space will allow you to advertise it when listing the home.

It may also be a good idea to put an addition on the home that can be used as an extra bedroom, office or bathroom. If you are going to add to the house, make sure that you have the proper permits to do so. On average, each additional square foot that you add of living space could equal $100 or more added to the listing price.

Update the Kitchen and Bathroom

For those who have a limited budget, it is in your best interest to focus on the bathroom and kitchen spaces. Kitchens are where those who live in a home are going to spend the majority of their time. Bathrooms are generally where an individual is going to start or end his or her day. Being able to do so in style will make it more likely that a buyer will pay more for the house.

Upgrading the kitchen and bathroom is also a good idea because it makes the home easier for the next buyer to sell in the future. That alone will make the home more valuable because no one wants to pay for something that they can’t liquidate if necessary. Depending on where you live a new bathroom or updated kitchen could add $20,000 to $100,000 to the value of a house.

Put a Hot Tub in the Backyard

A nice spa with all of the proper hot tub accessories in the backyard makes a home more appealing because it gives the owner a place to entertain or relax after a hard day at work. They can be used either in the winter or the summer, which makes it more versatile than a pool for those who live in more temperate climates.

While individuals may be able to install them themselves, it is generally better to have a professional install it for you. It should only take a few minutes to a few hours depending on how much electrical work needs to be done to accommodate the new item.

In some cases, your installer may suggest ways that you can further spruce up your yard to add value to the flip. In most cases, a home’s value goes up by whatever you paid for it, but it could indirectly increase your home’s value because it makes the home more appealing.

Add New Front and Garage Doors

Replacing the current front and garage door with new ones makes the home look cleaner, brighter and more attractive at first sight. Typically, you will increase the value of the home by as much as 400 percent of what you paid for them. Therefore, if you spend $5,000 for new doors, the home will be worth $20,000 more.

While flipping may not be for everyone, it can be lucrative for those who understand how to do so successfully. For the most part, you have to understand what buyers in a given market want and then tailor the home to those needs to make it as attractive as possible when it goes on sale.