The Home Improvement Industry is Booming
Home improvement is a multibillion dollar industry, and it has seen strong growth results in recent years. It encompasses a broad array of industries including building materials, appliances, decor, and contractors who help homeowners renovate or enhance their homes. In many cases, people undertake projects with the idea of adding value to their home, either for resale purposes or just to make their living space more enjoyable. But not all renovations add value, and some may actually decrease your home’s overall resale value.
The most popular home improvements are sparkling bathroom overhauls, followed by big-ticket kitchen and basement remodels. However, these projects rarely provide a high return on investment when it comes time to sell. In fact, a full-scale bathroom remodel can cost over $30,000 and only deliver about a 70% return on investment when you’re ready to sell.
This is why it’s important to carefully consider the purpose of any home improvement project you want to undertake. If you’re planning to sell your house in the future, it might be more worthwhile to focus on aesthetic upgrades that are more likely to appeal to prospective buyers. But if you’re planning to keep your house forever, it might be better to choose smaller, less-expensive projects that will provide a higher enjoyment level for you and your family.
Television home improvement shows and a growing interest in DIY have helped contribute to the rise of the home improvement industry. For example, in 1979 Bob Vila debuted his show This Old House, which featured a step-by-step home renovation and helped spark an interest in Victorian-style decorative elements for suburban houses.
Another factor contributing to the surging home improvement industry is rock-bottom interest rates, which have made financing these types of projects more affordable for homeowners. According to Anderson, some of the categories seeing the most surges are outside-related projects such as hiring landscapers, which is up 275%, and putting up fences, which is up 144%.
But if you’re going to hire a contractor to do any work on your house, it’s important to select one who is licensed and insured. Performing due diligence such as checking licenses, insurance, and business references can help you avoid unscrupulous contractors who take advantage of people looking to save money on renovation costs. The best way to find a trustworthy contractor is by asking for referrals from friends and neighbors, or searching online reviews of home improvement companies in your area. There are also a number of aggregator services that bundle home improvement offers and act as intermediary agencies between service providers and consumers. These aggregators usually require you to provide your contact details to them before they can match you with a home improvement contractor. This allows you to browse offers from multiple providers, and it can be a good way to compare prices and features. It’s also a good idea to read the fine print of any contract you agree to before signing it.