Category Archives: Home Improvement

Improving The Outside Of The Home

If you’re looking for a way to improve the home while the kids are out of school for the summer and while the weather is warmer, then consider a few ideas that will make it a bit more enjoyable outside. Build a shed so that you have somewhere to store all of the gardening tools and the toys that are strewn across the yard. Get the kids involved by building a clubhouse that they can customize with paint and decorations. It’ll give them a place to go so that they can read or spend time with friends when they aren’t in school.

 

Take the time to clean off outdoor areas that have been neglected. Clean and stain the patio or deck, clean the carport, or get new furniture so that you have spaces outside to enjoy time with the family. Consider adding shade to areas of the home that will be used in the summer, such as an umbrella over at least a corner of the patio. When you go out to the garage, you might see a mess of tools and other items that need to be organized. Sunny weather gives you the time that you need to install shelves, open the garage door to allow fresh air to circulate and go through items that are no longer used so that they can be donated or sold at a yard sale. Add a beautiful design feature in the yard. It could be a wooden bench surrounded by flowers or a solar bird bath that lights up in different colors at night. A garden pool is also an option if you have the space to work with.

 

Why More Homeowners are Doing DIY Projects

Being a homeowner is a lot of work and a lot of pressure for most people. However, it can also be quite pricey to call in the professionals any time you have an issue. This is why there has been an insurgence of people who are doing their own at-home projects. From handling their own plumbing problems to running their own heating lines, DIY-savvy homeowners are finding this to be a beneficial way to save money and learn new skills.

 

One of the reasons homeowners are doing their own at-home projects is because it saves a ton of money. Unfortunately, hiring the professionals to get something done can be costly and extravagant. Plus, you’re dealing with someone who may be overcharging you for their services or not doing the work correctly in the first place. One way to learn how to repair or install something is by looking at online tutorial videos. These videos are done by either professionals or other homeowners with first-hand experience, so you can feel confident utilizing their advice.

 

Make sure that when you do any at-home project yourself, that you have some knowledge about what you’re doing. It can be dangerous in certain circumstances to do your own home projects without first knowing how to do it all properly. If you’re ever questioning your ability to do something, it might be time to consider hiring the experts to do the work for you. Even though it can be expensive to have the pros come in to do the job, it is often a necessary evil to avoid putting yourself and your family in a dangerous situation. Thankfully, there are a ton of projects you can do at home that won’t be a direct danger to the safety of your home, such as running a new plumbing line or deciding to do your own painting. Saving money is essential when you own your own house and still need to get those projects done.

 

Enjoying Time Outside

Spending money on home renovations can sometimes seem like a waste if the family won’t use that area of the house. When the kids are out of school for the summer, they want to spend time outside. The summer season is also a time when you can enjoy cookouts or pool parties with friends and family. There are a few home improvements that offer ways to enjoy the sun a bit better than a traditional patio set of tables and chairs.

 

If the home doesn’t already have one, then consider adding a patio or deck. It will give you a space to sit on with your family or when you want to spend time alone in the fresh air instead of sitting on a chair in the yard. Make sure you seal the wood of the deck that you build so that it won’t splinter or fade.

 

A fun idea that is popular across the country is a fire pit. You can build the pit in any way you could imagine, but you need to ensure that the base is stable before anything else. Dig the base of the pit so that there is room for sticks and other items that you’re going to burn. Concrete blocks work well as a barrier around the pit to prevent embers from escaping. There are small pits that you can get at home improvement stores that don’t go in the ground. These are ideal for smaller homes or if you live in a home where you aren’t allowed to dig in the back yard. An outdoor fireplace is another idea, utilizing the deck space that you build or that you already have. The fireplace will give you a way to enjoy the outdoors in the fall or winter since there is a source of heat.

 

How to Take On Your Own At-Home Projects

When you’re a homeowner, chances are that you’ll eventually deal with household problems from time to time. The issue that a lot of homeowners face is the fact that it can be expensive to always hire a professional. If you’ve been struggling to hire an expert plumber, electrician or handyman, it might be time to consider doing your own at-home projects. The first thing you will need to consider is the actual project at hand. If you’re dealing with something that could be potentially dangerous, it might still be a good idea to get the experts in to fix the issues for you.

 

One way that homeowners are doing their own repair work is by watching tutorial videos online. These videos are made by either experts in the field or other homeowners who have done the work themselves and are now able to help other individuals. It is a smart idea to watch these videos before attempting anything on your own, especially if you’re dealing with something that could be dangerous or cause a lot of damage if it is not done properly.

 

If you must hire a local professional, be sure to contact a local expert in the field you need help in. This prevents you from having to hire someone far away from where you live, which often tacks on an additional fee just so that the person can get to your home. Most professionals will be able to give you a free quote for the work they’re about to do, which enables you to get multiple quotes from other companies before making the decision to hire any one in particular. The key to getting household projects done is to stick to a budget and know that you’re working with a professional who understands what they’re doing. When you attempt the job yourself, you’re able to save a ton of money and not have to worry that you’ll need to find someone local to come in and start.

 

Smart Budgeting For A Kitchen Remodel

A recent article from US News and World Report discusses the challenges of remodeling a kitchen and how to stay on budget. The source states that the first step for this project is to make a clear plan and stick to it. It is easy to overspend if the homeowners are not careful.

 

Improvenet.com shares that the cost of a kitchen remodel depends on the size of the job that is to be done. The website quotes $17,000 as an average cost for homeowners. Larger scale remodeling can reach $21,000 or more. Homeowners must know their bottom line before they start. It can be a troublesome ordeal if they overspend and run out of money before the kitchen is done, warns the source.

 

The best way to find unique remodeling ideas is to peruse creative websites. The source suggests sites such as Houzz or Pinterest. Homeowners might find pictures in decorating magazines that they can copy and turn into a picture board. After they get a general idea, they can do some price comparisons in home improvement stores and online for different supplies. It makes it easier to see if the budget is realistic, says the article.

 

Just replacing things such as appliances and cabinets are not as challenging or expensive as removing walls is, the article shares. That could include having to move gas, electricity, and plumbing lines. It can really run into high dollars. Costs will also vary according to material choices and labor, says the article.

 

To stay on budget, the article suggests that homeowners sign a detailed contract that includes parts and labor. Everything should be clear about any charges. When getting supplies, says the article, they should shop early enough to allow for delivery and any exchanges. This will prevent holdups in the work schedule.

 

Homeowners are also encouraged not to be taken in by the showroom displays. Often times, these displays use the most expensive choices for materials. When they have a definite design, it is easier to stay within the perimeters of the budget.

 

Little things in a budget add up quickly, the source states. That is why homeowners should choose even the smallest details wisely. Finally, this article reminds homeowners that there can always be unforeseen surprises when remodeling. Having an extra bit in the budget can alleviate them. With careful planning and a dedicated budget, people can have the kitchen of their dreams without going bankrupt.

 

Entertaining With Home Improvement

When beginning a home improvement project, consider working on the outside just as much as the inside of the home. You can transform the exterior space to one that is just as comfortable as the inside with a couch and chair that you can enjoy sitting on with family and friends. Wicker furniture works well outdoors as it’s easy to clean, but you could also use a traditional furniture set if the deck area is covered. Position the furniture around a fireplace or a fire pit for added comfort.

 

If you like to cook outside, then you’ll want to build a grilling station. This is a home improvement project that brings everyone together as you have to eat at some point. Start with cabinets and counters that are used for storage and to prepare the meals that you grill. The grill that you install shouldn’t be a simple one with one level. It should feature a side burner and two or three levels to make it easier to grill several types of food at one time. This is an entertaining improvement for special occasions or to simply enjoy time with the family outside instead of cooking inside the house all the time.

 

When you think of improving the home, you might think about painting or changing the flooring. An idea for the exterior is to add a sound system. If you have a pool or a large patio area, then it will allow for a way to listen to fun music while swimming or relaxing music while you’re talking with guests. You can bury many of the components of the system os that they aren’t seen or damaged.

 

Improve Your Home Wisely

Unless you plan to live in your home for the rest of your life, which you may very well be, any home improvement projects should be undertaken with the future in mind. Everything from paint colors to landscaping can affect your home value. If you plan to sell your home in the next few years, keep in mind the kind of improvements that attract potential buyers. In general, bathroom and kitchen upgrades are the most expensive but also show the most return on investment.

 

 

The kitchen is the room that most often needs an upgrade. When making choices about important elements like backsplash, cabinets, and countertops that what you like may not increase your home value. If you’re looking to sell your home in the future, consider staying away from highly customized designs. You may love a trendy purple backsplash, but potential homebuyers may be turned off. That doesn’t mean you can’t add a little personality, but don’t ignore timeless looks that could provide a better return on your money.

 

 

Take the time to look at your home through the eyes of a potential buyer. Adding an additional half bath on the first floor may be just enough to convince a buyer that your home is right for them. However, if that half bath makes the floorplan awkward, it may be a turnoff. You may be better served by a fresh coat of paint throughout your home creating a unified look or upgrade any outdated appliances and fixtures, essentially giving your home a facelift.

 

 

Another important consideration is location. Homes in Florida, California, and other warm climates may increase in value with the addition of a pool. In moderate to cold climates, a pool may not add enough value to make up for the cost of installation and maintenance. The money may be better spent repainting the exterior or investing in landscaping.

 

 

Home-improvement should always be done with an eye to the future. Find a balance between your personal preferences and salability.

 

Smart Apartments; Taking over the Real Estate Market

Smart home technology is rapidly taking the place of conventional homes in the market. Many people are resorting to modern structures that are fitted with energy efficient amenities and smart technology that improves the general quality of life. In the past, smart home technology majorly focused on targeting the homeowners rather than renters. This was effective then but is presently not strategically feasible.

 

Between 2005 and 2015 the figure that represented renters in the country shifted from just 9 million to 43 million renters. This significant increase was specifically centered around demographics that had integrated smart technological improvements to the homes. Companies that produce and manufacture smart devices meant for home improvement recorded broader and bigger sales owing to these developments. Samsung Vice president for global business mainly stated that areas like Manhattan and New York have featured as some of the largest markets for Samsung smart home technology

 

Renters have highly adapted to smart technology as opposed to homeowners. The older millennials between the age of 26 and 30 have been seen to be twice as receptive to smart home devices in comparison to other age groups. Americans in the higher income bracket are more likely to be homeowners more than people in the lower income bracket. Despite this fact, the number of individuals in the home ownership bracket has declined substantially over the last ten years.

 

An interesting fact that has been proven by various independent studies have highlighted the fact that renters are not homeowners since they aren’t able to afford mortgages, high home improvement costs or home down payments. However, when it gets down to splurging on the latest home improvement device, they do so effortlessly.

 

Experts state that renters who are looking to invest in home devices should not go for major changes like installing a thermostat or a smoke detector. This is due to the fact that any malfunctions that may lead to damages will have serious implications on the renter. The safest option for renters, in this case, is DIY smart devices that aim to make the home efficient.

 

The Upsurge in Canadians Home Improvement Projects

Canada’s home renovation projects have now increased to over one million dollars. This comes as no surprise for city residents and agents who have seen a significant rise in pricing of such projects in over seven years. With the soaring interest rates, investors are now scared of borrowing more.

 

 

According to the Bank of Montreal, the moderation that was seen back in 2015 to 2016 is now on a constant rise. Expenditure on renovations was rated at 10 percent within the final three months of 2017, which is a rise compared to the previous year. Such a high is sending home improvement back to the recession era when the government used to fix up projects using the special tax credit.

 

 

The Renovation share

 

 

If you equate the home improvement projects to the share of total money spent on Canadian real estate, you will see an upward trend, given that ownership rates have improved significantly. Also, new housing construction now makes an even bigger component from the expert’s point of view. Renovation spending by professional contractors now peaks at 49.5 percent of the residential investments from the 43.2 percent in 2014.

 

 

The trend is projected to continue, given the long-term trend that reflects limited development space in bigger cities and an aging population. According to Kavicic, a real estate developer and home improvement manager, if you are in search of a decent lot, then you should start thinking of renovating an old house.

 

 

In the past few months, the Bank of Canada announced that it was cutting its interest rate down to a quarter of a point to 0.75%, which further decreased the interest in the form of debt and along the lines of credit. Real estate is an important aspect of the economy, and if the Canadian government doesn’t enforce legislation to govern such an upsurge, then there is bound to be a problem within the real estate niche.

Effects of the Housing Market Recovery on Home Depot Inc.

Recent retail earnings have undoubtedly proven that the market out there is tough. In fact, a sluggish economic recovery coupled with increased e-commerce competition has led to various mixed outcomes, especially for some of the top companies in brick and mortar retail. Nonetheless, the home-improvement retailers seem to be non-affected by the situation.

 

Since the 2008 economic crisis, the housing market has displayed a steady recovery. This recovery is well depicted by the continued recovery in home prices and growth in construction activity. According to the Wall Street Journal, the increased home prices can provide homeowners with the necessary equity to spend on appliances, cabinets and floors. The higher home prices and lower home inventories may cause most home sellers to spend more on home improvement in a bid to cash more money on their asking prices. Alternatively, potential home buyers may opt to remain at their current residence by renovating as opposed to house hunting.

 

Stakeholders are anxious to see if the economic backdrop will affect Home Depot Inc. when it announces its first-quarter results. During the first quarter, Home Depot is anticipated to report $1.61/share from $1.44 in Q1 2016. The management at Home Depot projects comparable store sales at 4.6% for the rest of the year. During the unveiling of the first quarter results, analysts are expected to focus on how the comp store sales rank up against the management’s estimations. Additionally, analysts are likely to look at the growth of the company’s professional business.

 

Home Depot’s Plans

 

During the previous quarter, Home Depot unveiled a new $15 billion share repurchase program. In fact, the company claimed that it would repurchase about $5 billion worth of assets in the first quarter. Also, the management unveiled the opening of just six stress during the fiscal 2017. This number is small compared to the numerous stores Home Depot currently operates. As a matter of fact, Home Depot had 2,278 retail stores across the US and some international markets. According to the results on the options side, traders have priced close to a 2.5% potential stock in either direction, which is around the Home Depot’s release of its earnings.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/jjkinahan/2017/05/15/will-home-depot-earnings-benefit-from-the-housing-sector-recovery/#a41778e16be7