Best Home Improvements to Make

Choosing the Best Home Improvement Ideas

The process of upgrading your home can be an exciting undertaking for homeowners but understanding the home improvement options that can add value will make the project more worth it. There are endless options in the realm of improvements to your home, therefore it’s essential to develop plans and identify the best home improvement suggestions for your particular home.

This article we’ll look at various renovations that will bring value, ranging starting with inexpensive home improvement to more expansive alternatives. We’ll discuss the following renovations:

  1. Remodel your floor within the kitchen or the bathroom
  2. Change with a tubin your bathroom
  3. Change your showerheads and toilets by using low-flow systems.
  4. Incorporate the benefit of underfloor heating for your bath
  5. Make your HVAC system more efficient with the use of an air source heat pumpor a ground source heat pump.
  6. Upgrade with your older boiler with an energy-efficient model such as an electric combi boiler. electric combination boiler
  7. Make use of the solar panels for water heating in the domestic. heating
  8. Switch into LED bulbs
  9. Replace the old equipment by more energy efficient ones
  10. Make solar panels for your electrical requirements
  11. Insulate your walls and the loft in order to help make your house more energy efficient
  12. Draught-proofed by uPVC windows and double-glazed windows
  13. Refresh Your Rooms With Paint
  14. Add Crown Molding the Easy Way
  15. Install a Low-Cost Stair Runner
  16. Install a Dishwasher to Conserve Water
  17. Rewire a Vintage Entry Lantern
  18. Renew Old Flooring With Paint
  19. Make Shade and Add Privacy With Interior Shutters
  20. Give Kitchen Cabinets a Flawless, New Finish
  21. Get More Flowers Without Spending a Dime
  22. Install a Water Filter and Ditch Expensive Bottles
  23. Lay an Eco-Friendly Layer of Insulation
  24. Refinish Your Home’s Handsome Wood Door
  25. Put Down a Fresh Bead of Bathroom Caulk
  26. Revive Your Old Deck
  27. Add Architectural Interest With Stair Brackets
  28. Lay Low-Cost Flooring in Laundries and Mudrooms
  29. Protect Walls With an Easy-to-Clean Backsplash
  30. Prevent Mold Growth With a Bathroom Vent Fan
  31. Build a Custom Tool Bench
  32. Ceiling Fans for Summer (and Winter) Savings
  33. Cut Costs With a Programmable Thermostat

We’ll also walk you through the various steps you must complete prior to carrying these improvements like selecting the best contractor and obtaining the appropriate permits put in place and the different types of funding options for home improvement available to you. If you’re a keen DIYer then you’re already on the way to making savings. If you’re able to plan it properly you can alter the look of a room in a single effort that will only cost you about a couple hundred dollars.

What Are the Best Home Improvements to Make?

Choosing your next home improvement depends on various factors. For example, what is your budget? What’s the longest you’d like to stay in your home? Are you trying to increase the value of your home’s resales? Do you want to improve your home’s energy efficient? There are many questions you need to think about before you decide on the project.

To aid you on your journey Here are some low-cost home improvements to begin with:

1. Kitchen and Bathroom

If you’re looking to revamp a certain area, begin with the kitchen and bathroom. These two rooms are likely to yield the most ROI. When you’re making bathroom upgrades think about replacing the floor or replacing the bathtub. Simple modifications can greatly alter the value of your house.

If you’re trying to save money through small changes take into consideration changing your showerhead or toilets. The average bathroom toilet accounts for around 30 percent of water usage, which makes it among the most expensive fixtures in your home. By changing to an low-flow toilet it is possible to reduce the amount of water wasted and save money.

It is also possible to install the option of underfloor heating to your bath while you’re renovating. This involves installing a very thin heating wire underneath the flooring, and it will definitely improve the value of your house. This is a fantastic method to improve your bathroom, and also maximize the efficiency of the heating system.

2. Heating and Cooling

Heating your floors underfloor is only one of the methods you can use to improve the efficiency of your HVAC unit. It is also possible to carry out more extensive renovations to improve cooling and heating efficiency.

If you find that your HVAC system is old, you should consider replacing it. There are a variety of energy efficient low-carbon heating systems which are inexpensive and effective.

For example, ground and air source heat pumps are environmentally-friendly, and you may also qualify for an incentive through the Green Homes Grant to cover a portion of the cost. homeowners who want to install an air source heat pump will see their power cost to fall by as much as an average of 65% per year.

Making a decision to invest into alternative sources of energy could be an investment worth considering. Thermo-solar or biomass boilers are two options to can help homeowners save money. Additionally, they’re a fantastic alternative to heating with low carbon for anyone seeking for a replacement to their existing gas boilers.

Biomass boilers are like conventional gas boilers however they generate heat by using sustainable wood instead of fossil fuels.

If you live in a small house or a small space think about using an electronic combi boiler. These boilers are smaller than conventional models and don’t release carbon dioxide emissions. They’re also less expensive to set up as compared to gas-powered boilers which makes them an excellent investment for those on a budget.

3. Energy-Efficient Home Improvements

If you’re looking to lower your electric cost while increasing your home’s worth, there are a couple of smaller-scale adjustments that you can try in addition to some larger-scale ones.

They can differ in terms of scope and cost. For example, changing your lighting system from incandescent light bulbs, to light emitting diode (LED) bulbs is an inexpensive project that requires only some hours of time.

However, replacing old appliances with more energy efficient ones might cost a little more however, the investment will be worth it. For instance, dishwashers which are older than 20 years use up a lot of water in every cycle. If you purchase a model that is newer you can save water and cut down on your water bill. Similar benefits will be gained when you purchase additional Energy Star appliances like washing machines and fridges.

The more significant updates could cost a little more upfront, but they will certainly add the greatest worth. Solar panel are one of these updates. A lot of people cannot afford solar arrays due to the fact that the cost of these upgrades can be thousands of pounds in the beginning. However, green energy financing is available for national renewable energy sources. For instance The Intelligent Export Guarantee gives export tariffs on the renewable energy exported into National Grid. National Grid.

4. Insulation and Draught-Proofing

Enhance the value of your home and also save energy by insulate your loft and walls. Select batt or loose-fill insulation to make your loft more insulating at your own expense. The project should take only a weekend to finish.

To make your walls more insulating employ a professional install spray foam insulation , or choose to use rigid foam panels perform the task yourself.

Draught-proofing your doors and windows is a great way to keep your home warm and increase the value of resales. Re-caulk any old gaps around these openings in order to reinforce the envelope of your building.

Double-glazed windows are extremely effective, and even adding shutters to keep them warm during winter will aid in securing the heat. It is also possible to replace windows’ frames made of aluminum or wood in the form of uPVC and get the most efficient thermal comfort.

Easy Home Upgrades You Can Do on a Budget

Take a look at our list of high-value upgrades that fall under the $500 threshold, and some even in the lower range. They’re not only affordable today, but some of these could help you save money in the near future. Explore our home improvement tips below.

1. Refresh Your Rooms With Paint

You can give your boring and drab walls a gush of stunning color (or remove the decor snares with pure white) simply by picking up the paint container and looking at them. This is the power of the paint you apply that alters the way you see reality. This is the reason paint is one of the frequently-repeated DIY home improvement project.

Although you don’t need to be an expert to master the art of painting like a pro, there’s more to a successful painting job than simply slathering some paint across the surface. Check out our steps to apply your paint expertly within a weekend, starting from the initial scratch made by the pole sander until the last feather that the paintbrush.

Cost: About $150

Check out the How To Paint A Room for step-by step instructions.

2. Add Crown Molding the Easy Way

Crown molding can be found at the top of many renovation lists due to its the look and value of homes, not because people love working on a Saturday at getting their corners right. There’s an easy method to avoid the frustration of miter saws.

Trimroc molding made by Canamould Extrusions can be described as a light polystyrene foam that is coated with hard plaster. It is easily cut using a handsaw, and can be raised quickly using joint compound. There is no coping, no difficult angles, and the ragged joints disappear after a little mud. In just a few days you can transform the appearance of a room into an elegant one, while leaving ample time for other things on your projects.

Cost: About $120.

3. Install a Low-Cost Stair Runner

Do you want to have a firm grip on slippery staircases? Consider an easy runner. After receiving a price estimate of $2,500 to carpet her slippery oak staircase, TOH reader Jaime Shackford took the project in her own hands. Utilizing just two off the shelf woven runners ($125 each) as well as supplies from a local home center and a home center, she gave her staircase an upgrade that was non-slip.

Cost: About $300.

4. Install a Dishwasher to Conserve Water

Your old dishwasher could be causing havoc to the cost of water and electricity. The time is now to exchange it for a new Energy Star certified dishwasher that can save you up to 30 percent on electricity and more than 500 gallons water. If you do not have a dishwasher at all, you’re using up to 40 percent more water to wash manually!

The greatest cost saver of all? Installing dishwashers yourself in just the afternoon. No plumbing, no electrical work, and there’s no need to worry about wasting your retirement savings on sparkling dishes.

Cost: About $450+

5. Rewire a Vintage Entry Lantern

A lot of hanging lanterns from the beginning in the century of 20th were modest by design, appearing like they were made by blacksmiths, not machines.

Affluent among the popular tastemakers of the time like Gustav Stickley and the Roycroft craftsmen, these lanterns represented a classic design aesthetic. If you’ve found one of these in an estate sale or have one tucked away in the attic, it’s possible to invite your guests to “come on in” by making use of an old-fashioned lantern. It’s a simple, inexpensive task once you’ve got the necessary components.

Cost: About $140.

6. Renew Old Flooring With Paint

The red carpet within the bedroom master in Sara Andrew and Sara’s Massachusetts house didn’t match the vibrant and fresh look of newlyweds. However, refinishing the floor wasn’t an option with a small budget. In order to make the space more contemporary they decided to paint the floor with an elegant checkered pattern using white and beige to soften their cold blue walls.

This is how a bit of measuring and a few coats of floor paint that is durable can bring a lot of character to a room at a low cost.

Cost: About $75.

7. Make Shade and Add Privacy With Interior Shutters

The light streaming through windows could cause a lot of distracting factor. In addition, neighbors who are more likely to have longer than a few hours in the evening to gaze at your glowing living space. You can install shades to ward off unwanted eyes however swinging shutters made of wood are definitely more appealing.

Interior shutters were originally “window treatments,” commonly employed for Southern and urban dwellings and are an excellent method to create architectural and historical details. They also protect you from the cold winter winds and summer’s intense heat. They’re also easy to put on any window since they are attached to a thin frame which can be placed within the opening of the window or on the exterior inside of the frame.

Cost: About $150 to $400.

8. Give Kitchen Cabinets a Flawless, New Finish

Your kitchen is secluded and appears to be that way since the dim cabinets taken all light from the space. However, a more brighter look does not necessarily mean changing those dark cabinets with an brand new ones. If the doors and frames are sturdy they can be cleaned clean and apply fresh paint. In a matter of a few days, you can transform your kitchen from dull to bright. You’ll need powerful cleaner, sandpaper, paint brushes and a bit of elbow grease. The only thing you’ll need is a lot of money as the process will cost only a tiny fraction of the cheapest cabinets.

Cost: About $200.

9. Get More Flowers Without Spending a Dime

Dividing perennials every three or six years is a fantastic method to reduce the size of clump-forming plants like Daylily (shown here) which blossoms in late spring until the end of summer. It is also a great way to manage plant size as well as to boost growth and increase the variety of plants in the garden. One good rule of thumb is to cut the flowering perennials in summer and spring at the end of summer or prior to the first frost of the season.

Cost: $0.

10. Install a Water Filter and Ditch Expensive Bottles

Many households have made the switch to drinking water bottled due to concerns about the quality or taste of the tap water. These issues are prevalent throughout the country regardless of whether the water is from a municipal pipeline or a ground wells. There is a better cost and less costly way to get clean drinking water Install an under-sink water filtration system.

Cost: About $250.

11. Lay an Eco-Friendly Layer of Insulation

It’s enough for us to struggle to wake up early in the early morning. Let’s not even wake up and feel the freezing shock of a freezing floor. You need comfort underfoot, and a cushion when you walk around the floor of your home. Cork is the answer. Sturdy and durable, elegant and earthy cork flooring can transform any room into a relaxing oasis.

Cork is also simpler to set up than traditional hardwood flooring. Manufacturers are now offering engineered panels that are able to snap into place without nails or glue. These floating floor systems can be placed over concrete, plywood, or even floors that are already in use. In just a couple of hours you can turn your floor into a comfy mat on which your feet can wander around freely without worry of the cold winter weather or expensive rug for the area.

Price: Average is about $6-$8 per square foot.

12. Refinish Your Home’s Handsome Wood Door

The weather and the years weren’t good to this 94 year-old, heavy, cypress door. Varnish flakes still stuck to the wood in a few spots and the rest of the door’s surface was rough and dried from the effects of rain and sun. Wood entrance doors across the world are subject to the same attacks and, in the end, most end up in waste, being replaced by low-maintenancemetals, mass-produced metals and fiberglass replacements. You can still bring new life to your door by using some inexpensive items.

Cost: About $50.

13. Put Down a Fresh Bead of Bathroom Caulk

You’ve noticed the warning signs of ageing caulk. It was first the brown tinge that ran along the edges. Its smooth and supple skin has become cracking and brittle, opening the way for a plethora of stubborn mildew colonies to grow or for water to penetrate and make framing and wallboard into a mush. It doesn’t matter if it’s in the vicinity of your sink, between the bathtub and its surround, or even covering those joints in your shower enclosure -it’s got to be removed.

The good news is that caulk isn’t expensive and the application process isn’t too difficult. You’ll need just an hour, a couple of basic tools, and some materials that can be found in any hardware retailer. As easy as it sounds it is, you must make sure you’re doing it correctly otherwise you’ll have to caulk every year again, says Tom Silva, This Old House general contractor Tom Silva.

Cost: About $10 to $50.

14. Revive Your Old Deck

When the contractor Stephen Bonesteel arrived on the scene, the state of the deck was poor. Twenty years of brutal weather in the upstate New York weather without a single caretaker had made the once bright boards into a weathered gray that was flecked with slimy algae and the black leaf stain.

However, even wood that is neglected can be restored to good standing. In the span of an entire week, he powered-washed and then hand-scrubbed the deck to its original condition Then, he applied a semitransparent stain to shield it from weather and elements.

Cost: About $80 to $120.

15. Add Architectural Interest With Stair Brackets

Balusters and newel posts are the focal point but the unfinished side of the majority of staircases is overlooked. With the addition of attractive stairs brackets, an ordinary stringer can be transformed into an attractive attention-grabbing piece. This is a simple to install inexpensive wood brackets that can be raised using glue and nails.

Cost: About $150 to $250.

16. Lay Low-Cost Flooring in Laundries and Mudrooms

Prior to the introduction of flooring made of resilient sheets and plastic-laminate planks were vinyl tiles. It was initially developed as a substitute for the linoleum flooring, vinyl tile increased in popularity due to its attractive and easy to clean and also resistant to cracks. The 12×12-inch tiles come with numerous patterns, colors and patterns, which makes it easy to design checkerboard patterns and flooring with different borders. This article will show you how to install self-adhesive tiles to create a professional and long-lasting flooring.

cost: About $2 a square foot, and $80 to $100 in other materials.

17. Protect Walls With an Easy-to-Clean Backsplash

If putting up traditional tile backsplashes is a bit outside your DIY realm making one using a single sheet of solid surface may be the solution you need. Cutting, shaping and gluing the flimsy material that is available from companies like Swanstone that makes the beadboard backsplash seen here and comes in a variety of designs and colors is something that most novices can tackle with confidence. Once you’ve got your stylish backsplash installed you’ll be amazed at how it’s an attractive shield against splashes and spills that you’ll be wondering what the point was of considering tile in the first instance.

Price: About $25 a square foot.

18. Prevent Mold Growth With a Bathroom Vent Fan

Installing a fan that ventilates your bathroom can do more than just clear out blocked windows, steamy mirrors and unpleasant stinks. It also prevents issues related to moisture, like the development of mildew and mold which can be expensive to eliminate and cause health issues. You can avoid all of this with these low-cost upgrades. In this video, this old House General construction worker Tom Silva shows the proper procedure to install a bathroom vent fan. In this particular setup, Tom ran the exhaust pipe into the attic, and then through a wall to connect to the outside.

Cost: About $120 to $175.

19. Build a Custom Tool Bench

Amy Paladino is a pro in balancing the demands of work and her family. Like many of us when it comes to organizing the tools needed to make DIY-friendly projects, she required some help.

Here is a plan for a size-it-to-your-space tool-storage bench that doubles as a work surface. Although it might appear difficult, the design could be easier. You’ll also be able to protect your tools with an individual chest while cutting down on the price of storage that is available from stores.

Cost: About $150.

20. Ceiling Fans for Summer (and Winter) Savings

The demand for ceiling fans is growing as homeowners are able to enjoy dramatic, year-round energy savings. In summer, ceiling fans produce cooling breezes, which ease the load on air conditioning units. In winter they move heated air around to help keep the space warm.

The installation of a ceiling fan is quite simple, particularly when the area above is accessible via an attic. Even if it’s not, the task can be accomplished. This article will show you how to change the old light fixture with an entirely modern ceiling fan as well as a light in a room that has no attic above. The benefit of this method is that it doesn’t require you to connect new wiring. The fan is connected to the cable that is already in place from the light source that was previously used.

Cost: About $50 to $350.

21. Cut Costs With a Programmable Thermostat

Moving to digital using a model which automatically adjusts the temperature inside is relatively simple and could cut approximately $180 off your cooling and heating costs. Simple models that just regulate heat are available at stores for about $25. However, models like those shown here be used for a range of features, such as humidifying and cooling. They are typically purchased and then installed through HVAC contractors, however you can score a fantastic price on one on the internet and installing it yourself within a short time.

Cost: About $475.

How Do I Plan a Home Improvement?

If you’re planning to make a home improvement then you’ll need to set your goals, timeline, and budget before you begin. You can research different businesses for home improvement within your region and obtaining quotes that you can evaluate.

1. What Is Your Budget?

Look over your financial situation to decide on the budget for home improvement. You can then overestimate the amount you believe the project will cost , and make sure you save or borrow more than the amount you think you’ll require.

By having a cushion, you will help you avoid unexpected expenses. The project’s materials and complexity could add additional costs that you didn’t anticipate. The condition of your house and the geographical location can also impact the total cost of your project. If you allow yourself some space, you’ll be able to remain within your budget and complete the renovation on time.

2. How Long Do You Plan to Live in Your House?

Before you embark on a home renovation it is important to consider the length of time you intend to reside in your house for. Certain renovations can dramatically improve property value. house as well as yield a long-term profit on investments, which is why it’s crucial to decide what you’d like to remodel and when.

Installing low carbon heating systems allows you to enjoy RHI tax breaks for 7 years. You probably won’t want install an energy source heat pump and then then sell your home within a year, because you won’t be able to reap the advantages.

Alternately switching your windows to new ones could boost the value of your home quickly and result in a greater price when you decide to sell.

3. What Permits Do You Need?

If you’re planning to do a minor home improvement then you probably aren’t required to apply for permission. However it is possible that the government might need to be able to approve bigger home renovation projects prior to making progress on them.

If, for instance, you plan to construct something brand new, build an extension to your building or alter the usage of your home You may require approval first.

Get in touch with your local planning authority to find out if your project requires permits and what types you’re required to apply for.