Interest in home improvement has increased significantly over the past decade. It’s why the likes of Bunnings (Australia), Home Depot (USA), and B&Q (UK) are booming. For many they’re the equivalent of adult candy stores for the DIY addict.
We love to live in a home that’s got all the creature comforts, latest gadgets and appliances, and is super stylish as well. And yet there’s no denying that at times we find ourselves wanting more. That might not be the case for everyone, but many people certainly like changing their home in one way or another on a regular basis.
And it’s fairly easy to do. All it takes are some great home improvement ideas, a chunk of free time, and of course, a bit of cash. You can also have a lot of fun customizing your home especially if you get a few friends around to pitch in.
But why is home improvement a good idea to begin with? Let’s find out.
What is Home Improvement?
Simply put, home improvement is any project that enables you to make additions or adjustments to your home. It usually involves tools, hardware and building materials that you can get from a dedicated home store like the ones listed above.
For the most part, it involves improving the way your home looks and functions. The process itself can be simple or it can be very complex, it all depends on you, your expectations and your needs!
6 Key Areas for Home Improvement
Yes there are, and you’re free to choose whichever one you require for your circumstances. There are no set rules. Most of the time it pertains to the house structure in some way. But there are situations where it may also include the garden, outdoor structures, garages and so on.
Also included are general servicing, repair and maintenance as well. It’s important to note that each home improvement task has its own specific goal and is focused on delivering a certain outcome.
For example, you may need to build a garage for use as a workshop, an office space, an extra bedroom, or to park your new car. Each one has a different reason and requires a different approach to the home improvement planning.
Below are some of the home improvement types you may choose to undertake.
The main focus here is on upgrading things like:
- Heating, HVAC and ventilation systems
- Upgrading rooms with new luxury items
- Waterproofing basements
- Soundproofing rooms
2. Repair & Maintenance
These are home improvement tasks that cover:
- Roof replacement & repairs
- Plumbing repair
- Masonry & concrete repair and so on
3. The Need for More Space
Many people opt for home improvement when they need more living space. It may seem like a daunting task at first but it’s good to keep in mind that it will boost your overall quality of living when completed. It’s also a great investment in the long run.
Some of the peripheral areas of your home can be pretty easy to turn into liveable spaces too. For example:
- Attics can become bedrooms
- Basements can become man caves or an office
- Adding more rooms to the side of the house
- Going up a level or two, extending the roof
4. Energy Saving Measures
These days, many homeowners are on the lookout for ways of cutting down on their utility bills. This is especially the case given the rising energy costs of the average household.
With a little home improvement you’ll be able to save on energy consumption.
It’s a good idea to check out the following array of DIY options:
- Replacing your lighting with energy efficient models
- Replacing windows with double or triple glazing
- Increasing the thermal insulation
- Adding solar panels
- Opting for wood stoves
- Using programmable thermostats
- Switching to heat pumps
5. Preparedness & Safety
The great thing about home improvement is that there are so many ideas out there in magazines, online blogs and YouTube. This is especially true with the Prepper and off the grid movement.
Many companies cater for this growing market, so if you’re particularly safety focused you’re bound to come across some really good Prepper ideas.
When it comes to safety, you can:
- Add backup generators
- Install security doors
- Build disaster shelters – i.e. storm cellars, fire bunkers etc.
- Install shutters and security windows
- Install a fire sprinkler system
6. DIY or Hire a Professional?
With home improvement projects there are typically three approaches you can take to getting the job done. You can:
- Hire a general contractor
- Do the work yourself
- Opt for a specialized contractor
The general contractor works across a wide variety of home improvement projects. They’re able to:
- Act as a project manager – managing other contractors
- Hire specialized contractors for the job
- Provide access to the work site
- Do some of the work as well
- Coordinate the work schedules for the others
You can also choose to hire specialized contractors on your own rather than hire someone to manage the process for you. Basically, this is a contractor focused on a specific type of task and you can hire one for each task depending on your needs.
If on the other hand, you want to have a go at doing the job yourself that’s ok too. Just make sure you don’t do the tasks that require licensed tradies. If you try them yourself you could end up in hot water with local authorities, or worse, not properly insured if something goes wrong.
DIY home improvement is quite common, but you do need to have some knowledge (or be willing to skill up) to ensure that everything goes smoothly. It might take a while to do this, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Go For It – Take The Plunge
On the whole, there are many reasons why you might choose to start a home improvement project. One things for certain, you’re bound to get immense value from the process and the results could indeed prove to be fruitful in the long run.
Whichever decision opt for, you’re bound to improve the overall quality of your home!
Enjoy your renovation.
All the best,