The 6 Most Common Home Improvement Myths

2 min


Are you thinking about making some improvements to your home? Before you start spending money and time, you should review the following home improvement myths, so you’ll get the most for your investment.

Go Big or Go Home

Many homeowners are tempted to pull $100,000 in equity out of their home and order that big family-room addition and extra bedroom. There’s a time and a place for going big, but don’t assume you have to spend a bundle to make worthwhile improvements.

Also, you should weigh whether adding a lot of square footage to your home will result in the return on investment you might want. For example, you may decide to just spend a few thousand dollars on beautiful stacked stone panels to give the front of your home a sleek, modern look.

Or consider making minor upgrades to the kitchen, such as a backsplash and faucet. Sometimes, a handful of minor upgrades can give you a better ROI and make the home sell quicker.

Remodeling Happens Quickly

DIY television programs are fun, but if there’s anything that’s not entirely accurate about them, it’s the notion that it takes only an hour to remodel a kitchen or extend the family room.

These are significant renovations that can compel an experienced contractor to invest several weeks to complete. If you think you’ll do a $25,000 kitchen remodel yourself in a few hours, you’re going to be frustrated and discouraged.

You’ll Always Save a Mint if You DIY

Are you a skilled home contractor and enjoy doing that kind of work? Then you may want to make some home improvements yourself.

But projects such as roof replacement or foundation rehab usually demand highly skilled and experienced professionals.

Every Renovation Adds Property Value

It’s generally assumed that adding square footage — such as another bedroom — will add resale value. But that’s not necessarily true.

Let’s say you merge two small bedrooms into one large one. This can be fantastic for your family if you’re an empty nester and don’t need the extra rooms for kids.

But this renovation could be a big turnoff to a young family that still has three children in elementary school. Homeowners should remember that some renovations can damage the value of the home and therefore your ability to sell it fast.

The classic example is installing an in-ground pool, which many people accept as inherently great for boosting a home’s value. But some potential buyers don’t swim, are not enthused about the added maintenance, and may fear putting their children at risk.

Use Cheap Materials

You certainly want to do a home renovation within your budget, but this doesn’t mean you should buy the cheapest materials on the market. On the contrary, many real estate agents maintain that you’ll be better off when you want to sell if you use high-quality materials.

On the other hand, perhaps you shouldn’t buy the most expensive materials if you can’t hope to get anything close to your money back when you sell. A classic example is upgrading your kitchen far beyond what’s common in your subdivision.

You may love the result, but could end up spending far more on the renovation than you get back on the sale.

Don’t Worry About Permits

Some home renovations can entail only surface work, such as painting walls or changing faucets. But if you add square footage or do plumbing or electrical repairs, you absolutely have to get permits.

You want to be sure your contractor’s work is according to code, or you could encounter big problems when you sell your home.

These are six of the most common misconceptions about home renovations. You should focus on projects that will add value to your home … and make it sell quickly.

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