Unless you live in a new, custom-built home, there are probably a few aspects of your residence that you’d like to change, update, or improve. In fact, if you’ve lived in the same house for years, your home improvement to-do list is probably pretty long.
Last year, as the pandemic forced families to spend more time at home than ever before, many people began tackling home improvement projects, big and small. According to one estimate, the average homeowner spent about 50% more on such projects in 2020 than they did in 2019.
If the thought of undertaking a major renovation seems daunting, don’t worry; there are plenty of smaller projects that can transform your space in major ways. Here’s a list of six high-impact home improvement projects that are always worth the time, effort, and investment:
1. Replace Old Windows
It’s hard to think of a home improvement project that carries as many benefits — or stretches your investment dollar farther — than new windows. Apart from brightening your interior and boosting your home’s curb appeal, new windows make your home quieter, more secure, and more energy efficient.
To bring more natural light into your space and make it feel more expansive, you may want to increase the size of your window openings and order larger replacement windows.
2. Get Rid of Worn Carpet
Putting in new flooring is a common goal for many homeowners, and for good reason — a lot of homes have carpeting that’s long past its prime. Replacing soft flooring (especially if it’s old and worn) with hard-surface flooring updates your space, makes it easier to clean and improves the indoor air quality of your home.
It is ultimately cheaper if done all at once, however, if you have a lot of carpet and a limited cash flow, you may need to tackle your floor replacement project room-by-room. Start with the most worn-out floor or the space you spend the most time in.
3. Apply a Fresh Coat of Paint
You don’t have to completely renovate your space to transform it — often, a fresh coat of paint is all it takes to revitalize and brighten any room. Choosing the perfect combination of hues for your walls, trim, and ceiling doesn’t just reset the mood of your space; it also erases the grime buildup that makes walls look dingy over time.
Fast, easy, and inexpensive, freshly painted walls deliver maximum benefit with minimal input.
4. Give Your Kitchen a Facelift
You spend a lot of time in your kitchen, so you know what’s working and what isn’t. If your wish list is long, start with the item that will have the most impact — it may be a new tile backsplash, better countertops, restyled cabinets, or upgraded appliances; new flooring and freshly painted walls can make a world of difference, too.
No matter which project you choose to tackle, you can’t go wrong. Any improvement you make in your kitchen essentially pays for itself by making the space more enjoyable and functional; it also boosts the market value of your home.
5. Update Your Main Bathroom
Bathroom updates — even if they’re relatively small — are always a smart move. Replacing a clunky, outdated vanity with one that’s compact and stylish can make the room feel more open while upgrading old light fixtures and adding layers of light can provide balanced illumination.
Even simple projects like removing shabby wallpaper, replacing worn-out flooring, re-grouting the tile in your shower, and creating a statement wall with paint, wallpaper, or tile can breathe fresh life into your bathroom.
6. Revitalize Your Outdoor Space
If 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that outdoor living spaces are just as important as indoor living spaces. Installing a patio, pergola, deck, fire-pit, or outdoor kitchen can increase the value of your home and give you a place to socialize safely through the pandemic and beyond.
But you don’t have to spend a lot of money to create an amazing outdoor living space — simply update your landscaping, arrange a comfortable seating area, and install some outdoor lighting.