As the flowers begin to peek out of the ground, we too are ready to embrace spring, pull up our sleeves and get to work attacking our to-do lists. How do you determine where to begin? Our designers have four tips for tackling your spring and summer home improvement projects.
You may be tempted to start with the projects that are cheapest or most simple, but that may not be the best approach. We suggest starting with the ones that serve a functional purpose. Start by considering your daily routine and what might be beneficial.
Would a storage bench by the garage or front door organize the mess of shoes you find yourself tripping over? How about expanding the counter space or adding an easy-to-store shelf to fold laundry? When you analyze what will help you with your day-to-day tasks and habits, you’ll be able to determine which projects are need to do versus want to do.
Consider the “Wow” Factor
Next on your list, examine which projects will stop your guests in their tracks as they admire your handiwork. This could be simple projects such as painting the entryway or a room where you do most of your hosting. It might mean painting your front door with a new color or a fresh coat of the old color. It could be laying down some new wood flooring over that old linoleum. Or maybe it’s just adding accessories such as new lamps, an area rug or throw pillows to freshen up the space.
Study your home and the areas where guests are most likely to congregate. As you do this, ask yourself, “what changes could I make to the space that would wow my guests and make me happy?” We suggest starting small with paint or new accessories before taking on larger projects like adding crown molding or wainscoting.
Get More Bang for Your Buck
It may sound like a great idea to retile the bathroom, replace the kitchen cabinets or finish the basement, but which projects are going to give you the biggest return? Some of the larger, more costly projects may look beautiful, but they might be more costly than the value they actually add to your home both in the dollar and emotional value.
As you look at some of the projects on your list, consider whether a more low-cost approach could be taken. Instead of replacing the kitchen cabinets, perhaps a coat of paint or new hardware is all you need to refresh the look. Maybe a durable wallpaper would better than an expensive or time-consuming tile backsplash installation.
In addition to your wallet, be sure to consider your skill level before starting a project. Sure, the home remodeling television shows make it look easy, but that doesn’t mean it really is. The amount of time it will take and how much your life will be displaced by the project are also important points to contemplate before starting any home improvement project.
Keep Your Head Out of the Clouds
It’s easy to become inspired while watching HGTV or flipping through magazines, but as you write down your planned projects, you might find yourself overwhelmed. Don’t let too many ideas or options keep you from doing any improvements at all. Take it one space or one project at a time. This will help keep you focused and help you avoid starting too many projects only to have a houseful of partially finished improvements.