As a homeowner, you probably make continuous improvements to your home to keep everything updated and stylish. Small touches like a new rug, bedspread, or bathroom towels can make a noticeable difference in the look of your house. But many home projects will bring more benefits than just aesthetic appearance. There are some home improvements that will also streamline maintenance, save energy, and add value to your property, such as the following.
Painting Your Home
While regular power washing of your home’s exterior may keep it looking good for a few years, you will eventually notice the color has faded or there are spots that don’t come clean. These are clear signs that it’s time to paint your house. Fresh paint on your home’s exterior can do more than brighten its curb appeal. Specialized paints can help prevent mold and mildew on the surface of your house and give you more years before you need to paint again. Painting the wood trim around windows and doors also adds a layer of protection from the elements. Painting interior walls can help as well. Choosing a quality paint with the right finish for your room can make walls easier to clean and prevent sun fading.
Compared to carpeting or vinyl, hardwood floors are more expensive to buy and have installed. Yet, your investment pays off in the long run. Not only will hardwood floors beautify your home and add a stylish and elegant flair, but there are also practical advantages. Hardwood floors are easier to clean and care for, and they don’t collect dust, pollen, and other allergens like carpeting tends to do. Moreover, the hardy surfaces last for many years and aren’t easily damaged, torn, or stained like carpets and vinyl. Moreover, an investment in hardwood floors will add value to your home should you ever decide to sell.
Granite countertops are wildly popular these days, but it’s not just a passing fad. Replacing your laminate countertops with beautiful custom granite will give you a surface that’s tough and easy to care for. Since these countertops are made of stone, they resist heat, scratches, dents, and stains. Although they tend to cost more initially than other countertop materials, granite will last for decades and requires very little upkeep. Just avoid using harsh chemical cleaners and be sure to reseal them periodically.
Replacing Your Doors
As your home settles, it’s natural for tiny cracks and gaps to appear in the frames of your exterior doors. These may be too small for you to notice, but they are large enough to let in insects and other pests and to allow air leakage that affects your heating and cooling costs. Replacing your older door with a new one can save you money. Efficient home entry doors keep your energy bill down by taking pressure off your HVAC system. If your home is older, you probably don’t have the energy-efficient doors that are standard in newer homes. Today, they are made from materials such as fiberglass and steel and are better insulated. Stronger doors can also make your home’s entrances more secure.
Remodeling the Bathroom
Updating your bathroom can save you money and add significant to the value of your home. A new vanity not only looks great but also gives you more storage. Replacing old fixtures with water-efficient toilets, faucets, and shower heads helps to conserve water and save money on your water bill. Because of the constant presence of moisture, bathrooms are susceptible to mildew and deterioration, so check your plumbing for any leaks. Consider using moisture-resistant sheetrock, paints, and floors, such as luxury plank vinyl. Better ventilation may help prevent these problems in the future.
Buy New Appliances
Today’s washers, dryers, refrigerators, dishwashers and stoves have been engineered to be energy-efficient and water-efficient and can help you save on utility bills. These appliances use a number of strategies such as sensors to adjust energy use only when it is needed. For example, most new clothes dryers will sense moisture and shut off if clothes are dry enough. Other appliances have been made energy-efficient by design, such as refrigerators with better insulation and efficient compressors. Many appliances can even connect to your WiFi, allowing you to use a phone app or smart home device to start, stop, or monitor them.
Just like doors, windows can be sources of air leaks and provide easy entry for pests. Replacing some or all of the windows in your home will help with your heating and cooling costs. Some window glass also has reflective coating to reduce sun glare. You can also get impact-resistant glass to protect against heavy storms. Even without replacing windows, there are steps you can take that will help lower your energy bill and improve the look of your home. There are many stylish window shades that block sunlight, provide cooling, and prevent sun damage.
Choosing the Right Lighting
Often you don’t think about lighting until a bulb burns out or a fixture breaks. Or, you may replace a light fixture for fashion reasons when redecorating a room. But the right lighting can make your home more livable. Well-chosen lighting can provide needed visibility for certain activities or subtle light for relaxation. Exterior or landscape lighting enhances the appearance of your home, but it also has practical uses. Solar-powered path lights can illuminate a walkway, making it safer at night to enter or exit your home. And, motion-sensing lighting can be an important part of your home security.
When it comes to home improvements, each home will have individual needs. Homeowners, also, will vary in their tastes and style preferences. But as you choose your latest project, consider taking steps that will both improve the appearance of your home and also result in practical benefits. A wise investment can make your home more pleasant to live in and easier to care for. You can also cut maintenance and energy costs and add to the overall value of your house.
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