Home improvement

Often called remodeling, home improvement is a type of project that involves upgrading the exterior and interior of an existing house. It is a common choice for home owners who want to add value to their property. While most people are happy to spend their money on something they love, it can also be a frustrating experience when it doesn’t turn out the way they hoped. Here are some tips for home improvement projects. Choosing a contractor and budgeting for the project are key elements to consider.


When planning to renovate a home, budgeting your project is an essential step. Renovation projects are exciting, but can quickly run over budget. According to Bob Harkson, chief financial planner at Phase2 Wealth Advisors in Gig Harbor, Wash., he has worked on kitchen renovation projects for clients who have under-budgeted for the projects. Ultimately, a home improvement project will cost more than you planned, take longer to complete, and require more resources than you anticipated.

If you have an eye for aesthetics, you may want to consider hiring an interior designer. An interior designer and a building contractor can help you determine what kind of work is necessary and how much to spend. HomeAdvisor can help you estimate labor costs. Labor accounts for 20 to 35 percent of a home improvement project. You should also factor in the cost of fixtures and finishes, as well as taxes. You should also consider any shipping or delivery costs for new appliances and furniture, as well as disposal costs if you’re replacing existing items.

Choosing a contractor

Before hiring a home improvement contractor, make a list of questions you want to ask the candidate. This way, you can compare all candidates on the same criteria. If you feel that a contractor lacks a certain skill, ask for a list of references. Obtain a list of references from previous clients. Then, contact each reference and ask them about the contractor’s work. Make sure to ask for photographs of their previous projects.

Look for companies that have been accredited by the Better Business Bureau. The Better Business Bureau will list businesses that meet strict standards to maintain membership. In addition to licensing, BBB-accredited businesses must adhere to strict standards to protect customers and ensure fair and transparent advertising. Also, they must protect their customers’ privacy. Before choosing a home improvement contractor, check references to determine whether they have worked in your area before. If they don’t have references, cross them off your list.

Budgeting for a kitchen renovation

The most important part of budgeting for a kitchen renovation is establishing a master plan and a set budget for the project. This plan can be drawn up by you or an expert, but it is vital to stick to it! Often, people tend to alter the layout of the kitchen when they renovate it, but this can be costly in the long run. You will need to relocate electrical and plumbing wall locations.

When planning your kitchen renovation, determine the costs of materials, appliances, and labor. Kitchen cabinets, countertops, and flooring typically require 10% to 40% of your budget. Other materials, such as paint and drywall, require less than 5% of your budget. Electrical work and plumbing fixtures will also require some of your budget. You should also account for a temporary living space or eat out during the construction. To ensure that you stay within your budget, create a spreadsheet to track your expenses.