Home improvement is the process of improving or upgrading the interior or exterior of a house. This can include but is not limited to remodeling, painting, re-grouting tile, installing new flooring, adding doors or windows, building a deck, changing landscaping, constructing fences, or any other similar projects. Home improvement is a popular pastime and can be a great way to make your house more comfortable and appealing.
When deciding on which home improvement projects to tackle, it is important to consider the current value of your home as well as your personal preferences. The cost of the project should also be taken into account. It is a good idea to consult with a real estate professional before beginning any major renovations.
In the early twentieth century, Americans began transforming their living spaces in significant ways. New house construction had slowed down after World War I, but the home improvement movement was picking up steam. Government mortgage insurance programs and other incentives for veterans encouraged home buying, and suburban life became dominated by tract houses built by large builders such as Levitt and Sons.
The popularity of home improvement television shows helped fuel the enthusiasm for DIY (do-it-yourself) projects. Advertisements for power tools were designed to appeal to both men and women, and cable television shows such as This Old House and Trading Spaces blurred the line between traditionally male-dominated home improvement activities (carpentry work) and the more feminine sphere of interior design and decorating.
For many homeowners, the main motivation for home improvements is to increase the resale value of their property. However, before making any major alterations, it is essential to discuss the plans with a real estate professional to ensure that the additions will actually add value. It is also a good idea to obtain estimates from multiple contractors before making any decisions.
Another reason for making home improvements is to make the dwelling more functional. For example, installing a wheelchair ramp or wider doorways can help accommodate those with disabilities. Likewise, replacing an old kitchen stove with a more energy-efficient model can help reduce utility bills.
Regardless of the reason for making a home improvement, it is important to plan carefully and take into consideration the long-term effects of the project. For example, a hot tub or fountain in the backyard may seem like a great addition to your home now, but it could detract from the overall appearance of your neighborhood if everyone else has one as well.
It is also crucial to consider safety when working on any home improvement projects. Always follow the instructions in any manuals you have and use caution when working with power tools or around hazardous materials. It is also a good idea to check with local codes before starting any project. Lastly, it is always a good idea to consult with a professional before attempting any home improvement projects that require structural changes or major electrical or plumbing work.