Home Improvement Trends

Home improvement is a multibillion-dollar industry that encompasses the sale of building materials, appliances, decor, and contractors or tradespeople who help renovate or upgrade homes. The industry has seen excellent growth results in recent years, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic when consumers stayed at home more and spent money improving their living spaces.

The most popular home improvements include adding living space like a bedroom or bathroom, and adding energy efficiency with new windows and insulation. Other common projects are updating kitchens and bathrooms, installing a patio or deck, and replacing flooring. More expensive renovations can add value to the home, such as a new master suite or a gourmet kitchen. But homeowners should weigh the cost of these projects carefully and make sure they are able to pay for them without ransacking savings or going into debt.

Despite the sluggish economy, home improvement expenditures have been on the rise in recent months, a trend that is expected to continue into 2021 and beyond. Low interest rates, rock-bottom energy prices, and the desire to live in a well-maintained and attractive house are all driving this trend.

TV shows such as This Old House and Trading Spaces have also helped to bolster the culture of DIY home improvement. The popularity of these shows, as well as the growing acceptance of women in skilled trades such as carpentry, has blurred the traditional distinction between what is considered a masculine sphere, such as home repair and construction, and the more feminine sphere of interior design and decorating.

According to a September NerdWallet survey, three-fourths of homeowners say they have money set aside for home improvements. And almost half of those who have undertaken projects report that they were able to stick to their budgets and finish the work on time.

When choosing a contractor, it is important to research businesses thoroughly. Consumers should check for a valid MHIC license number, review business references, and obtain multiple estimates before beginning a project. Consumers should avoid companies that require a deposit upfront or do not clearly state the contract price. Lastly, it is recommended that a homeowner not sign a contract with any company that does not have its name, address, and MHIC license number preprinted on the agreement.

If you are not planning to sell your home anytime soon, it may be worth taking on some small DIY projects that will increase the value of your home for when you are ready to put it on the market. Painting, re-grouting tile, and power washing the exterior are inexpensive and simple projects that can yield high returns when it comes to listing your home for sale. Neglected maintenance tasks, on the other hand, will be discovered quickly by a home inspector and could detract from your selling price. Fortunately, most homeowners are still living within their means and can afford to make the necessary upgrades to keep their houses safe and comfortable. This will allow them to enjoy their homes for years to come.