Home improvements can be tricky business. Perhaps the trickiest part is knowing which improvements to do yourself and which to have a professional do for you.
A certain big box home improvement retailer used to be fond of saying, You can do it. We can help. Far too many do-it-yourselfers were encouraged to take on projects they shouldn’t have done themselves. The only thing they could do is sell you stuff. The retailer will never be there to help when things take a turn for the worse.
It can also be tricky to know which home improvements are actually improvements. First, one must be clear about what an improvement is. An aesthetic improvement may only be an improvement in the eye of the current beholder.
If you are planning to sell your house, an improvement can be measured in profitable equity. Some beautiful and fun improvements might actually cause you to lose money. Some hot home improvements actually devalue your home. Here are a few home improvements that are actually improvements in almost every situation:
There are almost no situations where a home security system is anything less than a net positive. It is one of those projects that can be as big or as small as you like.
With an ADT security system, you can go wired or completely wireless for your install. While wireless installs are generally considered to be a natural fit for apartments and rentals, it also makes sense for permanent housing. Wireless offers a much easier upgrade path for later hardware improvements.
Security is always a concern, especially among families with small children. That same family with children might not be so keen on buying a house with a swimming pool in the back yard. A swimming pool can make the house a lot harder to sell to many buyers. But a security system is an easy buy for just about everyone.
Central Heat and Air
Even a good fan is inconvenient. You have to find some place to plug it in, along with some floor space to set it up. Even an oscillating fan will not cover the entire room. On a hot day, you can be certain that you are not the only one in the house needing to cool off. Setting up a fan or two in every room is less than ideal.
The situation is even worse when it comes to heating an entire house. Instead of fans, you have to worry about properly setting up space heaters. Not only is that inconvenient, it’s dangerous.
Buyers do not want either a fan or a heater. They want climate control. That is a much different, safer, and more convenient proposition. Central heat and air is the solution fro which people are willing to pay extra.
A fireplace is also something many are willing to pay extra for. But a fireplace is a dangerous upgrade, not because of the open flame or the extra maintenance. But rather, a fireplace eats up the better part of a wall where no television can go. It also restricts furniture setup. Also, it only heats one room of the house. It is no substitute for central heat and air.
There are different methods of bringing the inside to the outside. It could be a conservatory, a gazebo, or a front porch. There are options for all kinds of houses with all kinds of spaces. The idea is to extend the living area into the outside in some form or other.
An extra room is almost always a bonus. A three bedroom is more appealing than two. A sun room is a bonus room. A furnished porch is like a bonus room. A house feels much bigger when the outside is somehow made a part of the living space.
There is no upgrade that is perfect for everyone. There will always be situations where an upgrade is unwelcome. But in general, you won’t go wrong when you add security, central climate control, and extra living space.