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Top 5 Home Improvement Tips

Top 5 Home Improvement Tips

1. Plan your project and get bids well in advance

Have you ever tried searching for a contractor for your new deck before Mother’ s Day so that it can be completed by then? You'll spend more for an estimate now, than if you'd hired someone in January. Contractors typically work out their plans ahead of time and don't wish to interrupt their schedules. They'll give you a low bid, because they really don’t wish to fit you in…unless you're willing to shell out a higher rate.

2. Pay extra for energy saving functions

With the rise in gas prices, many homeowners are turning to solar power systems to help reduce their monthly utility bills. Solar panels are becoming increasingly popular because they provide a reliable source of electricity without any harmful emissions. However, if you're not familiar with how these systems work, you may end up spending thousands of dollars before realizing that you've wasted your money. Here are five things you should know about solar power systems before you invest in one.

3. Hire an architect or designer for at least an initial sketch

The most expensive mistakes you can make is to not plan ahead. Whether you're building a new house or remodeling an old one, you should start early so you can get everything done before winter sets in. You'll save money if you hire professionals who know what they're doing. They'll also give you advice about how to avoid costly mistakes.

4. Get involved and pitch in by doing some of the work yourself

Doing the entire project myself is by far the best option. However, if you do not have the time or skill set, your part-time effort can help cut down expenses. For example, consider undertaking such tasks as demolishing, moving materials, excavating, clearing debris, hauling trash, washing walls, painting, tiling, plastering, installing flooring, laying carpet, hanging wallpaper, repairing drywall, replacing windows, putting up shelves, building cabinets, constructing countertops, installing lighting fixtures, plumbing, wiring, and so forth. Coordinate these projects with the contractors ahead of time and agree upon their value. Make sure to finish each task in a timely manner. Delays can cause the project to overrun and increase overall expenses.

5. Compare the price of renovating with the cost of building new

You should think about what kind of property you really need before you start building. Adding extra rooms to an existing structure might increase its value, but if you're planning to live in the area permanently, you'll probably want something bigger. In any case, you should take into account whether you can afford to pay off the mortgage on the new property. If you can't, then you could end up spending thousands of dollars on a project that won't benefit you financially.




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