April 8, 2012

Top Five Spring Projects With Big Payoffs

Follow the rules of Home Ownership 101 and make the exterior of your house the first priorityIt’s beautiful outside and the last thing you want to do is spend all of your spare time working on your home when you could be playing or spending time with loved ones.

So what home improvement projects offer the biggest bang for your buck when selling your home — saving you both time and money down the road?

As a homeowner, it’s difficult to resist the temptation of a new kitchen or bathroom. But some experts say rule No. 1 in the manual of Home Ownership 101 clearly states: invest first in the structure of your home. “The reason is simple,” says John Gardner, head of a company that makes fibreglass siding. “Taking care of your home will prevent major, unexpected repairs and will pay dividends over time.”

The second rule of thumb of home improvements is to invest in curb appeal. When you are selling, it pays to add charm and distinction on the exterior. The exterior of a home is the basis for the first buying decision; this is why investments in curb appeal typically provide a higher payback than other home improvements. Finally, more and more homeowners want homes that are easier to maintain. If you want to spend more time enjoying life and less time working on your home, invest in exterior fittings that are nearly maintenance free and can dramatically reduce the time you spend cleaning or maintaining your home.

Based on these three critical rules of home ownership, here’s a list of the top five spring home improvements with big payoffs:

  • Replace gutters. Replacing old gutters is an easy way to spruce up a home and reduce the chance of water draining into your basement.
  • Update your siding. New siding can instantly give the appearance of a total home makeover. Removing old siding also provides the opportunity to inspect your home for any moisture or creature damage that if left unchecked can lead to significant and costly damage to the structure of your home.
  • Repair the roof. Severe weather over the years can take its toll on your roof. Inspect your roof for loose, damaged or missing shingles, especially around chimneys and vents, where water can leak into your home.
  • Install energy efficient windows. Replace old, out-of-date windows with new energy-efficient products.
  • Reseal your driveway. Look for cracks and movement in your concrete and asphalt driveway. Fill cracks with a crack filler or sealer to prevent water from getting underneath your driveway. Reseal your driveway to give it a fresh, new look.

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