Final 40 Home Improvement Tips to Save You Time, Money and Headaches! (part 3 of 3)

Home Improvement Home Maintenance

  1. Home inspection: Getting an overall inspection done on your home can really be a proactive step to stay on top of problems that may get out of hand if not caught early. Also it can uncover problems that are so hidden that you may have never found them on your own. So making it a practice to get an overall home inspection at least once a year is a very wise move.

  2. Before beginning any new home improvement, clear out all items you no longer need. You can clear up a lot of the space in your home by doing this, which can make it easier to unpack and get settled in. Less trash around the home will help you become more organized.

  3. You can craft your own kitchen back splash by using varnish and wallpaper. Begin by purchasing wallpaper with a design that you love. Measure out the full space of your wall, and purchase a bit more than you actually require. Apply the paste and allow it to take a few minutes to get tacky, Hang the wallpaper as you smooth out the bubbles that may appear. After the paper has dried, you can trim away any excess on the edges. Once the wallpaper sets, you can use a brush to apply varnish. Stand back and admire your handiwork.

  4. Chair cushions eventually flatten with use. Sitting chair cushions in the sun helps them fluff back up to life. The sun will help remove some of the moisture in the cushions and give them new bounce. Flip the cushions over after a while, but be careful not to leave them outside too long, since the sun may fade the fabric.

  5. Review any quotes for all of your home improvement tasks and determine which are normal documents and which quotes are given on a letterhead. Generally, professional businesses use letterhead, which means the business has likely been in operation for a while. This is an important metric to use to avoid scams. This will give you a good indication as to if the company is worth looking into further.

  6. Always consider your climate when thinking of home improvement projects. For example, an elaborate landscaping project may not be the best choice if you reside in a hot, dry climate and are frequently subject to watering restrictions. If the renovation does not suit the environmental conditions, the renovation will not be worthwhile.

  7. Crown molding makes a huge difference to your walls. Crown molding introduces a little visual interest to an otherwise plain wall and can significantly improve the appearance of a whole room. Crown molding is not very expensive and installation is easy.

  8. Before you start to paint your house’s interior, make use of a wet cloth to take away dirt and dust from the baseboards and walls. The paint will adhere much better when you do this, and it may only take one coat and save you from making frequent touch ups.

  9. Educate yourself. A home improvement store in your area is likely to have classes that you can take. The stores offer classes because they want you to do all of your business with them. Attend some of these helpful classes to pick up the basic skills you need to tackle your next project around the house.

  10. To get the most out of your home improvement projects, make sure you are using the best tools for the job. Jobs can be done more easily and, more importantly, done correctly with the right tools. Ensure that you completely understand how to use any tool you are working with to ensure safety.

  11. If you do not have a lot of money to replace your cabinets, consider resurfacing them to create an updated look for a budget price. It can be expensive to completely repair cabinets. However, replacing just the cabinet fronts can cost you much less. You will have a whole new look and spend very little.

  12. Investigate credentials for all professionals you enlist for home improvements. You need to ensure that the contractor has the required skills and experience to complete the project without causing any problems. Simply asking for credentials is a good way to steer clear of major problems.

  13. Homes that have a nice view tend to sell for a lot more than similar houses without a view. There are some instances where the extra expense for a good view might not be worth it. Potential buyers may not care for the changes you make and may not want to pay more money for your home.

  14. Vinyl flooring is an affordable alternative to more expensive materials like stone or ceramic. Vinyl has several things going for it. It is durable, installs easily with an adhesive backing, and resists water damage. You can buy this flooring as a set or in one piece to cover a large area.

  15. Be on the lookout for sales on carpet installation at local carpet dealers, as well as national retailers. In order to gain customers, they will install carpet for cheap prices. These offers are well worth taking advantage of; depending on the details of your home, you may find that the labor that goes into installing new carpet is more expensive than the carpet itself.

  16. Vacuum out your cabinets before you clean out the interiors. Sucking out the loose dirt and debris will speed up the subsequent cleaning process. Use a mild soap solution to clean the shelves. Remember to start with the highest shelves and work downwards; this minimizes the amount of work you have to do. Also, this a prime opportunity to replace worn out cabinet lining paper and improve any sagging shelves.

  17. Opting for carpeting in very high traffic areas of the home is going to be costly and not last as long as other options. It won’t take long at all before the carpet is ruined. All it takes is a few people tracking their mud across it to ruin it for good. You will need to replace it frequently. Adding a harder, easier-to-clean surface is much better. Think about linoleum, hardwood, tile, etc.

  18. Before starting your renovation, make sure that you have a well-designed plan in place. Having a plan is important for any project to be finished in time and within the expected budget. Changing your plans or adding tasks in the middle of a project can easily increase your costs and time to completion. Contractors will be much happier if you know what you want before construction starts.

  19. Cement backer boards are necessary if you are putting in tile that will be near moisture. This back board prevents moisture from touching the drywall. Not only can water damage drywall, but it can also promote mold growth, which can cause certain groups of people to become sick.

  20. When contemplating a landscape project, it is essential that you choose a design style that will complement your home. When a garden or patio area matches the style of the rest of your home, then this brings cohesion to the whole property, where clashing styles may look unattractive or unplanned.

  21. When you put your house up for sale, be sure that each space has a purpose that is well-defined. For example, your office should have the right furniture and accessories for a typical home office. Potential buyers will be able to get a better grasp of the space’s purpose and come up with compelling ways they could use it themselves. Your house will be more attractive to buyers and that increases your chances of selling.

  22. It is important to pay any contractor with either a credit card or a check. This is a good way to make sure that you do not get scammed. Credit cards are a good payment method if you need to dispute the work rendered.

  23. Major upgrades may require professional planning or permits so be aware of those costs. The blueprints are worth the money. These records will be filed with your house and if you sell in the near future, buyers will know your upgrades were completed up to code.

  24. Check your caulk. In the bathroom, particularly, it is important for any caulk to be in good shape. It is a good idea to check the caulking for holes around your tub to see if it needs to be resealed. Small cracks allow moisture to get in where it shouldn’t be, and this can lead to the formation of dangerous mold. If water starts seeping through the holes and cracks in your caulking, it will find its way into the flooring, and eventually the floor will start rotting. Prior to applying new caulking, eliminate all traces of the old caulk and ensure that the area is cleaned and dried thoroughly. You will achieve the best seal from the new caulk when you have a clean surface.

  25. Never let a contractor start without having a signed contract. If it’s possible, have a lawyer review the contract. Start and finish dates, warranty information, the work to be performed and the total cost should all be clearly spelled out in the contract.

  26. Practice energy efficiency. Doing things like insulating your doors and windows (and even getting double or triple pain windows) is a smart move to keep you home energy efficient. This will definitely be a key step in lowering your heating & cooling bill.

  27. Use pressure washers and compatible detergents to wash down your home’s siding with a hose. It is really cheap to rent a pressure washer, and you will get amazing results for very little work. Be careful when cleaning windows and roof lines. You want to avoid knocking things loose!

  28. Have a budget for various home improvements projects if you want to keep your house up to date with repairs and updates. Dedicating some money to maintaining your home each year will help it stay in better shape in the long run. Any funds left over can be set aside for major projects or unexpected repairs the following year.

  29. Browse magazines and attend local shows for great home-improvement ideas. Even if you are not planning on a DIY project right away, seeking and remembering the ideas that you want to use ensures when you do tackle the projects, it will be less stressful. Not only that, but purchasing materials ahead of time can help to spread out the expense.

  30. Your bathroom can be redecorated quickly and on the cheap. Buying new towels, a shower curtain and bath mat is a very easy way to give your bathroom a new look. You will find that this adds a bright new feel to the room. Plants are good in livening up any type of bathroom. Remember to choose the right one that can tolerate high humidity as well as low light requirements.

  31. When buying new furniture for your bedroom, consider buying freestanding units. Fitted items such as dressers or cupboards add a certain look, but they can never be moved or relocated completely. As well, free-standing furniture can be moved around your home or sold separately if you need cash for your next remodeling.

  32. It is important to protect flooring when painting. Paint can be difficult to remove from your carpet or floor, so take preventative measures. One inexpensive and effective way to protect flooring is using layers of old newspapers. You can also use a plastic sheet or paint cloth to block your floor if paint splashes.

  33. If you hire a contractor, ensure you keep good records. Never rely on your contractor to do so. Save any contracts and invoices related to your project. This helps you and the contractor continue to concentrate on the work at hand.

  34. Clean out, then organize your pantry. Trash the stale and out-of-date food and condiments. Clean and sanitize the shelves and add some fresh, attractive liner paper. Categorize and group similar products together within the same shelf or area. This will allow you to easily find all the necessary ingredients when preparing your next meal.

  35. When you hire a contractor, you should agree on a payment schedule based on the work done instead of a time line. This will give you the ability to fire the contractor if the work isn’t at the quality you expected without leaving incomplete projects or the contractor requesting more money.

  36. When replacing your roof, think about using white tile. Black, brown and dark blue tiles will absorb sunlight and heat your home too much in the summer. If you use lighter-colored tiles, the temperature in the attic won’t rise as much. You will actually be able to enjoy your attic space.

  37. Adding extra insulation in your home can help save you money. Older homes especially are way under insulated. You can dramatically cut down on your heating and cooling bills by installing more insulation in your crawl space and attic.

  38. Fresh paint on your walls will add a new look to any room and won’t cost a fortune. Visit a hardware store in your area and view the paint chips. Find colors you find complementary to your home. If it doesn’t turn out the way you wish, it is easy to paint over it!

  39. Always keep safety at the forefront of your mind. You may feel a bit silly donning a hard hat in the “safety” of your own home, however think how silly you will feel sitting in a hospital bed explaining how an errant piece of drywall popped you on the head and put you there. Goggles, hardhats, as well as breathing apparatuses, can prevent injury while you make home improvements.

  40. Save money to pay for your home improvement projects before you actually start them. Otherwise, you could run short of money during the project. This is because the pressing need for more money right in the middle of a project will more often than not make you feel more stressed and more likely to spend unwisely, so budgeting at the beginning of the year will help you to avoid this problem.

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28 Responses to Final 40 Home Improvement Tips to Save You Time, Money and Headaches! (part 3 of 3)

  1. Mary says:

    These tips are very helpful! I believe that one of the most important yet usually neglected tip in this list is “home inspection”. Home owners should always have a home inspection before conducting any renovations so as to not cause any conflict. I’ll definitely be back on this post when I decide on having some home improvements!

  2. Karuni says:

    My mother is obsessed with Vinyl floors. They’re pocket friendly (if you want to satisfy your inner cheapskate hehe) in terms of installation pricing and durability and very beautiful if you ask me!

  3. Sakura says:

    This is very helpful! Recently my family and I have been talking about having our home improved a little but we knew it might cost us a little. Some of the tips are truly helpful so thank you for the tips! Especially the cushion and the roof ones!

  4. Raynier A. says:

    Overall home inspection conducted by a professional home repair service crew is indeed a must before any home improvement, repair, or renovation is done. A thorough home inspection helps the house owner spot a damaged part of the house that would probably go unnoticed by an untrained eye. I’ve been there, done that.

  5. Mynard Pontillo says:

    Wow, this is such a wonderful blog post. We are a family of carpenters and this is really helpful. I would like to emphasize no. 86 because that is 100% correct. Families can really save more when they’d consider climate when doing home improvements. I am from a tropical country (Philippines) and when you don’t consider how unpredictable the weather and climate is, saving tons of money from home improvements will really not make much sense. Faultless article! Would love to read some more

  6. Marcella says:

    These are quite valuable tips. We’re actually in the process of planning a home improvement project and I will definitely keep in mind these reminders. This list reinforces my belief in the importance of great planning, budgeting and research no matter what type of project you are doing. As a homeowner, I really think home improvement projects should always be done the right way. Thanks for sharing these!

  7. Mhel says:

    The first two (81&82) are so helpful! You should really make some time to inspect first your house for possible added tasks that are not listed on your home grooming, also making sure to put out the appliances or upholsteries that are not needed any more, you can put it to auctions or garage sales for additional budget.

  8. Danielle says:

    This has been incredibly informative! Especially the part about getting white roof tiles instead of dark colours! I never even thought about that but that is a fantastic tip and I will be sure to keep it in mind the next time anyone I know (including myself) needs a new roof. Thank you so much!

  9. Hannah says:

    You’ve got excellent tips especially for new homeowners or owners who are planning to spruce up their space by renovating. Really loved the tip on the chair cushions. I’ve always wondered how to make them get that bounce back, and I didn’t know you could just fluff them back up by putting them out in the sun for a short period of time to bring life back to the cushions. Love it!

  10. Mardhiah says:

    This is really a big help! My parents are planning a renovation for their own home, so I am anticipating to help. I will take note on #95, as we happened to get not-so-cheap deals when my father re-built their home garage to be a small warehouse before. Other tips are great too! Thank you for the article.

  11. Rodel Langcao says:

    Very well put. Everything is of the best tips, Helpful and Informative. Well, I sometimes see my grandmother lay all her bed cushions outside in the sun but I thought that it was just for drying. Now I know.

    I admit, I’m not built enough for doing house repairs and renovations – that would be my dad and brother but it doesn’t mean I’m not interested on knowing how things are done and what other ways to do them. Thanks for this.

    • ContractorGuy says:

      Hi Rodel, thank you for your comment. Not sure what you mean by “built enough”, but you sure don’t have to be Hercules do many home improvements that’s for sure:) Having the right tools and working smarter not harder will get you a long way.

  12. Pirooz Wallace says:

    I found this to be very helpful, especially the tip about cushions. I have done this thing where I sit on a different cushion of the couch each day so they wear out evenly, but putting them in the sun sounds like a much better idea, thanks!

  13. Opondo says:

    I particular like the aspect of placing chair cushions out in the sun to get the moisture out and have them bounce back to life. Its a simple thing you can do any time.

  14. Vanessa says:

    I love these! I have always been a homebody so I do a lot, well not that much, of things around the house to improve it somehow. These are great idea and I am happy to say that I have tried some of them. There is much to learn of course. Fluffing pillows up under the sun with a little lavender is very nice, and the kitchen back splash idea is golden. Perfect for someone like me! Thank you!

  15. HandyMan says:

    I’ve always been a fan of doing little home improvements by myself (hence the name HandyMan :P) and thank God I came across this article! Fairly straight forward and spot-on, to say the least. The part that says “Save you the headaches” did it for me.

    Quick question on #82 – Before beginning any new home improvement:

    Do you have any specific recommendations about items that fall into the category “items I no longer need?” I know that this is a rather vague question, but I sometimes have a knack for keeping leftover materials, from plastic pipes to metal bars for example, and some of those have been stored away for a while. Do you think that it’s not worth to recycle these materials for my next home improvement project on the sole basis of the materials having aged due to storage and maybe it’s always worth it to buy new materials instead?

    • ContractorGuy says:

      Hey HandyMan thank you for your comment. Only you can be the ultimate determiner of the things that you “need” or not, especially being that you’re a handyman. But I would say that it’s good to do inventory of your “stuff” at least every few months to decide if you really will definitely use it in a current or upcoming project (preferably within 6 months or less) or is it just more junk piling up. Bottom line is that you don’t want to turn into a pack rat.

      • HandyMan says:

        Thank you, ContractorGuy. I haven’t thought about doing an inventory until now, and that indeed makes perfect sense! Might as well send the old stuff to the nearest junk shop for extra cash.

        I will be checking out your posts moving forward for more sensible home improvement tips!

  16. Yennie says:

    I’ve been wanting to do my own home improvements mainly to save money and these tips are exactly what I need. I didn’t even know that flattened cushions can be fluffy and “bulky” again by merely having those sit in the sun for a while. Huge help!

  17. Dexter says:

    Nice article over here. I really needed to do some improvements in my home (renovating to be precise)then I accidentally bumped on this.

  18. Collins says:

    Planning for renovation is quite informative. I have always started without knowing my budget and this piece of information will help me a lot in future.

  19. Colin P says:

    Valuable tips [resented in a straightforward and concise manner. Understanding our home is important before considering any kind of renovation

  20. Faye says:

    Thank you very much for this share. This post is very helpful to me since I am planning to have some home improvements.

  21. Katrina says:

    These are very useful tips! Home owners, especially those who are starting building their homes or those who are renovating can apply these.

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