Home improvement includes the sale of building materials, appliances and decor as well as construction, remodeling, repair, maintenance and upgrading services. This industry has reached excellent growth results in recent years. During the COVID-19 pandemic many consumers were focusing on making improvements to their homes.
The most popular projects involve refreshing shower areas and installing new vanities, toilets, tiles and fixtures. Changing out faucets and lighting fixtures, as well as repainting rooms can also be inexpensive home renovations that offer a high return on investment when it comes time to sell. More expensive projects, such as adding a master suite, usually don’t provide an immediate return on investment but do add value to the home over the long term.
About 3 in 5 homeowners have undertaken home improvement projects over the past year, according to our September survey. However, a majority of homeowners still wouldn’t allow home improvement professionals to work inside their house due to COVID-19-related social distancing concerns. In addition, rock-bottom interest rates make home improvements more attractive in this unsettling economic environment.
Regardless of the project, it’s important to consider the costs and benefits before beginning any work. Most importantly, don’t go into debt. It’s best to pay cash for home improvements, and never take out a loan unless you absolutely have to. Also, if you plan to renovate with resale in mind, always consult a real estate professional before investing in high-end upgrades. When comparing contractors, be sure to get all work details in writing before any work starts. It’s illegal in Maryland for contractors to begin work without a signed contract that has their name, address and MHIC license number preprinted on it.