Which Home Improvements Add the Most Value?

During difficult times of economic slowdown and falling home prices, each and every penny spent on home improvement should be well planned and thought out. It might not be the best idea to over invest on home renovation and improvement given that the return on this investment is not going to be commensurate with the value of the investment that you make towards home renovation. Data suggests that the average return on home improvement has been showing a declining trend. Last year figures suggest that the return on home improvement had dropped to app. 70% which indicates that for every 1 USD spent on home improvement, the appreciation in your property would be to the tune of 70 cents.

However, there still seems to be several reasons to go for home improvement. There are several home renovation options available but the ones that seem to be the most preferred ones for the investors based on the return on their investment are Upscale siding replacement, Adding a wooden deck, Minor kitchen remodeling, Replacing windows, Midrange bathroom remodeling, Renovating an attic into a bedroom, Finishing a basement, Adding a second room, Adding a garage and Adding an upscale bathroom

The home renovation ideas may broadly be classified into minor, mid-range and major investments depending on the amount required for the task. A minor facelift would typically cover things such as charging the flooring, tiling work, shower doors, replacing faucets, and fitting new doors and windows. The mid-range changes would include remodeling the bathroom, installing a new counter top with sink and putting a new toilet with a new tub surround.

If however, you are someone who shall be staying in this for the rest of your life and have always dreamt of those high end home improvements, more often than not you are likely to go by your heart and desires rather than your head. You very well know that you are not going to gain any return but you don’t care less. Be it that extra stylish gourmet kitchen, a hot tub, building a pool, an outdoor kitchen or fire space, these ideas certainly make s style statement.

Home improvement ideas that make your home more energy efficient, beautiful and comfortable would make your living even more enjoyable. Fuel efficiency and energy saving measures have always been in the top performing home improvement ideas because of the associated “green” factor. Simple ways to make your home more eco friendly and energy efficiency measures like fitting UPVC windows and wall insulation would go a long way in reducing your energy bill. The other home improvement idea that is a hit with most people includes home security measures. This is one aspect most people consider a necessity and yet provides a good return on investment. There are plenty of options to finance your home renovation. The rates charged by various lenders towards home improvement usually move in line with home loan rates.

10 Must Have Apps for Homeowners

Whether you’re still looking at homes for sale or you’ve just moved into a brand new home, we’ve found a few smartphone/tablet apps that you must have. These apps will help you with everything from decorating your home to discovering your new neighborhood to budgeting your next home remodeling project to even paying your mortgage.

1. iHandy Level – No matter if you’re hanging up a valuable art piece, a picture frame or a shelf, this handy level will help make sure it’s straight.

2. ColorSmart by BEHR – Smokestack Grey or Pinecone Green? Discover which paint color would look best in a room without making a single stroke. This app allows you to take a picture of the room, choose your paint, and then preview what the room would look like in the hue(s) you’ve chosen.

3. Photo Measures – Drop that ruler and pencil! With this app, you simply take an image of a room, then write in all its measurements so you never have to guess how much paint you need or what size curtains to buy.

4. AroundMe – This app is perfect for homeowners who are new to the area. AroundMe finds the closest restaurants, bars, shopping centers, coffee shops, banks, hospitals, movie theaters, pharmacies, grocery stores, gas stations and more.

5. Sum+It Up Billing Buddy – Planning a remodeling project? This app lets you know exactly how much the project will cost – from hiring a contractor to buying the necessary materials.

6. HomeSavvy – Home maintenance is an important, yet often forgetful thing to do. This app lets you set a home maintenance plan, then sends you alerts each time a task needs to be completed, such as changing the batteries in your smoke alarms, cleaning the gutters, fertilizing the lawn or even getting an oil change on your car. It also includes a directory of local businesses with customer ratings for each task that needs completed.

7. Remodelista – Get the inspiration you need to decorate every room in your home! This app provides you with expert advice, trendy DYIs and stylish furniture and décor.

8. Billminder – Never pay a late fee again! This app allows you to organize your mortgage, utilities, cable and all other bills by their due dates, then it sends you reminders when their due dates are close. You can even set up their secure AutoPay option that will automatically pay your bill on its due date.

9. My Home Scr.APP.book – Although we don’t like to think about it, disasters can happen. This app lets you take pictures, write descriptions, and add bar codes of your possessions and organizes them by which room they are in. This will come in handy for determining how much insurance you need and/or filing a claim if you ever need to.

10. iScape – Dreaming of a fresh, flower-filled front yard? This app lets you take a picture of your current yard, then select your improvements, such as fresh grass, mulch, flowers, trees and décor. Click on “save” and you will see your boring lawn transform into an outdoor oasis.