Outside of the home itself, remodeling is typically one of the largest investments you can make as a homeowner. Consider these tips to help you make an informed decision when hiring a remodeling contractor.
Starting a Home Remodeling Project
7 tips for choosing a qualified contractor
(Family Features) Outside of the home itself, remodeling is typically one of the largest investments you can make as a homeowner. While some projects can be tempting to tackle yourself, many larger-scale projects may require hiring a qualified professional.
Because remodeling your home is a big undertaking, it’s important to take steps to ensure the professional you hire to perform the work is qualified to complete it to the highest standards of quality and integrity.
Consider these tips from the experts at the National Association of the Remodeling Industry to help you make an informed decision when hiring a remodeling contractor.
Follow Your Design Aesthetic
Ask for Licenses and Insurance
Search for Violations or Complaints
Compare Apples to Apples
Find more tips for selecting a contractor at remodelingdoneright.com.SOURCE:
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
Remodeling a house is often necessary once the property becomes outdated and has a lack of functionality. As a homeowner, it is necessary to plan for a remodel if you want to increase the value of the house and boost its appeal. You also want that process to be as easy and stress free as possible, without breaking the bank. Here are a few important tips to follow to take the headache out of an upcoming home remodel.
Plan, Plan, Plan!
Planning each step of the remodel is necessary to avoid mistakes or complications that can occur. Whether it is choosing the features that will be upgraded or the design of the rooms, you will need to have a detailed plan in place and write out a clear timetable. Fortunately there are a number of apps that can help plan out a room's look. Using apps can allow you to save images for inspiration, create a checklist, and even write out a budget to make everything easy to access on your smartphone or tablet wherever you are.
Get the Proper Help
One of the most common mistakes homeowners make is attempting to remodel their property without the help of trained and experienced contractors. Although hiring trained professionals may be an investment, it can allow you to avoid stress and costly mistakes throughout the process. For large projects, you will need more people than you realize. Although you may be able to break down a few walls or paint, you will need to hire professionals to perform the electrical wiring or plumbing, which are more complicated parts of the remodel that are best left to the pros. Get referrals from friends and research reviews online to ensure you can find contractors you trust while getting estimates.
Budget for Issues
Although you may know how much money you have to spend on your remodel, it can be easy to exceed your budget due to unexpected expenses that arise. You may find mold in the walls or electrical issues, which will require spending more. Make it a point to set aside a portion of your budget for potential issues to ensure that you can resolve the problems without having to stress.
Knowing how to plan for an upcoming remodel can allow you to avoid unnecessary stress and headaches as you transform the look of your property. With the right tools and professionals used, you can have a smooth and successful process that yields beautiful results while improving the quality of your home.
If the ultimate goal of your home improvement project is aesthetic, the greatest benefit may come from your personal enjoyment of the new space. However, if you’re looking to add true value to your home, it’s important to consider which projects are likely to bring the greatest return on your investment.
Home Improvements with High ROI
(Family Features) If the ultimate goal of your home improvement project is aesthetic, the greatest benefit may come from your personal enjoyment of the new space. However, if you’re looking to add true value to your home, it’s important to consider which projects are likely to bring the greatest return on your investment.
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If you’re still uncertain about the right investments for your home, it may be wise to consult a local real estate expert who can provide insight on the features that bring the most value in your market.SOURCE:
To help homeowners with their renovation projects, Marcus by Goldman Sachs(R) is sharing budget-friendly home renovation tips. There are several ways to finance larger projects and it’s important to explore your options to find the one that’s right for you. This article contains five important tips to keep in mind when deciding how to fund your next home project.
(BPT) - Whether it’s transforming a fixer-upper into your dream home or just giving a makeover to your kitchen or bathroom, home improvement projects are on the minds of many new homeowners across the country.
While many things about renovating your home are flexible, your budget might not be. In general, not a single floor board is laid, or a new countertop installed without money, which is why every home renovation project should begin with careful financial planning.
To help homeowners with their renovation projects, Marcus by Goldman Sachs(R) is sharing budget-friendly home renovation tips.
There are several ways to finance larger projects and it’s important to explore your options to find the one that’s right for you. Below are five important tips to keep in mind when deciding how to fund your next home project.
1. Shop around. The better you plan, the better chance you’ll save money. Before anything gets torn out or installed, you should spend time consulting with contractors and getting estimates. Look at the work they’ve done to see if they would be a good fit. Most importantly, don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions to make sure you’re working with the right people and paying the right price.
2. Consider financing options. There are several options when financing a home improvement project and it is important to choose the right fit for you. Home equity loans and home equity lines of credit (HELOC) require you to borrow against the value of your home, with home equity loans offering a lump sum while home equity lines of credit provide you with a credit line you can borrow against. An unsecured home improvement loan can be used based on your creditworthiness and ability to pay, not tied to a piece of collateral.
3. Create a budget. Because of the nature of remodels, things often end up costing more than you might think. No matter how big or how small the project, you need to have a solid sense of what your “all in” budget number is. This should not only account for hard and soft costs for things like labor, materials and designers, it should also account for contingency costs. Experts typically recommend budgeting an additional 15 to 20 percent for unexpected scenarios that might arise. A thoughtful budget will help keep your priorities in front of you and prevent you from spending more than you want.
4. Remember, this is an investment! Not all home renovations will pay off in the long term. It’s important to consider cost vs. value before you start making changes, especially for homeowners looking to sell in the near future. If you plan on putting your house on the market sooner rather than later, be sure to keep track of the top home features to get the best return on your investment.
5. Work with a designer. This might sound like a luxury or an added expense, but in many cases, a designer could actually help save money by finding deals or providing suggestions for less expensive alternatives, such as using quartz or white concrete instead of marble. Above all, their expertise can help avoid costly mistakes that can often arise when people try to cut corners on their own.
With these tips, you should be better prepared to finance your home improvement project. When you’re ready to start, you shouldn’t have to wait weeks for a home appraisal to get your renovation project underway. You could see your home improvement loan options from Marcus by Goldman Sachs in as little as five minutes and once approved, most people see the funds in their bank accounts in as little as four days. With Marcus you could be one step closer to your dream home.
A home is often a family’s single largest asset, so making investments with upgrades and home improvements is almost always a good idea. However, knowing when and where to make those improvements isn’t necessarily a simple decision. Budget and space most often dictate the direction, but keeping function and your lifestyle needs in mind can help create a space that makes for an all-around smart investment.
Home Upgrades that Make ‘Cents’
Improvements to boost your home’s value and enjoyment
(Family Features) A home is often a family’s single largest asset, so making investments with upgrades and home improvements is almost always a good idea. However, knowing when and where to make those improvements isn’t necessarily a simple decision. Budget and space most often dictate the direction, but keeping function and your lifestyle needs in mind can help create a space that makes for an all-around smart investment.
For expanded control over the amount of light and warmth that enters or leaves your rooms, solar-powered skylight blinds are available in more than 100 designer colors and patterns. Like the skylights, Velux solar-powered blinds are operated with the remote. The solar products and installation costs are also eligible for a 30-percent federal tax credit. Learn more at whyskylights.com.
Finish the basement.
A basement is the perfect location for expanded room to live and entertain, and if you have egress or other windows, adding extra bedrooms may also be an option. When making plans for finishing a basement, keep function first. Adding features like bathrooms can be costly if the plumbing isn’t already in place, but having ready access to those facilities may pay off if you plan to spend lots of time downstairs. Also keep climate in mind; in many parts of the country basements tend to be damp, so be sure to use materials that can withstand the conditions during the rainy season.
Create outdoor living space for all year long.
This is another area where climate will play an important role in your plans; adding a well-constructed enclosure to a patio can make it usable during all but the coldest months, while a pergola or other shading can lend necessary relief to an area that bakes in the summer sun. Aside from the hardscaping, look at other ways to soften your outdoor space and enhance livability, such as functional shade trees and flowering vegetation that attract birds and butterflies.
Add curb appeal.
Choose the Right Skylight
As a homeowner, there is nearly always a laundry list of projects with time and budget constraints when it comes to a home remodel. This step-by-step guide can help ensure you get the maximum return on your investment and make the most of your remodel.
5 Steps for a Home Remodel
(Family Features) This step-by-step guide from the experts at the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) can help ensure you get the maximum return on your investment and make the most of your remodel.
Step 1 – Identify Reasons for Remodeling
Step 2 – Set Your Budget
Step 3 – Hire the Right Team
Step 4 – Understand the Plan
Step 5 – Complete the Project
Remodeling a space can be a major project, but with the right help, resources and information, you can make your dream home come to fruition.
Photo courtesy of Getty Images (family looking at paint swatches)SOURCE:
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
(BPT) - Are you planning an upcoming home improvement? If so, you are not alone.
Higher-than-average renovation spending is expected in 2017, according to a leading consumer magazine, with more than half of homeowners planning to spend money on home improvements throughout the year.
From upgrading appliances to gutting entire rooms, big projects can have a big impact on a home and on your wallet, so it’s important to approach any renovation with thoughtful intention.
To ensure you make the right decisions when it comes to large purchases and major home improvements, ask yourself these five questions:
How long do you plan to live in the home?
Knowing how long you expect to live in your home can help you better navigate home improvements. If you only plan to live in your home for five years you'll likely make different decisions than if it is your forever home.
What is your budget?
Home upgrades don't come cheap, so it's helpful to determine a budget before you start. Consider renovations and upgrades as a smart way to maintain your home investment. By putting money into your home, you are helping maintain its integrity, style, usefulness and value.
When setting a budget, you can pay out of pocket or take out a personal or home equity loan. Additionally, some companies offer low-interest financing. If you plan to borrow for your project, make sure you clearly understand and are comfortable with payment terms.
Once you set a budget, stick to it. Problems may arise that require unexpected additional costs, but often budget blowouts are from homeowners who start spending and the excitement of the project causes them to go beyond their means.
What purchases are worth the splurge?
Research and decide which purchases are worth spending more on. For example, appliances used nearly every day are a worthwhile investment — especially if they are more energy efficient and offer features that enhance your day-to-day routine.
Rather than getting a basic washer, opt for the LG TWINWash(TM) 2-in-1 washer. It can run two loads at once, saving homeowners time and energy.
LG TWINWash combines any Energy Star(R)-certified LG front load washer — including the largest capacity on the market (at 5.8 cu. ft., it’s large enough to fit a full set of king-size bedding and a comforter) — with a second washer, the LG SideKick(TM). This smaller washer sits in place of the pedestal, and washes 3-4 lbs. of clothes, making it perfect for custom-care items.
Owners of LG washers can also decide to upgrade their existing front load washer from 2009 on with the LG SideKick instead of purchasing a new one — making a big upgrade simple.
Bottom line: Make sure your purchase improves your daily life and is proven to last. (For example, LG washers and dryers were recently named the most reliable in all laundry categories by a leading U.S. consumer products publication).
What is the ROI?
The return on investment should be considered in many ways for home improvements. First, check out reputable reports like the Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report. For example, adding fiberglass attic insulation recoups 107.7 percent of the cost.
In addition to resale ROI, consider other ways you'll get a return on your investment. Will your upgrade help you save energy and reduce your bills? Will it save you time and stress in daily life? Does it enhance your home's aesthetic and flow? These are other ROIs that are just as valuable to consider as resale ROI.
What does the research say?
It's worth your time to conduct research so you get the best outcome possible. Learn about materials to discover which is best for your lifestyle and research brands. If you're hiring the project out, research contractors to find a reputable professional for the job.
Starting a home improvement project is exciting. Answering these questions will help ensure your time and financial investment are well spent.
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