Home improvements offer return on investment

Mike Urlacher

Spring affords a perfect time for homeowners to start thinking about making improvements and upgrades to their homes.

While homeowners want to enhance comfort, function and style, these improvements can also provide a return on investment by increasing the value and longevity of the home.

One of the easiest and most cost-effective things you can do is to declutter and clean. Not only does this make your home feel more open and inviting, but it also helps you stay organized and can even brighten your mood. Regular home maintenance is also crucial. Repairing faulty circuit breakers, electrical outlets and switches as well as drywall, trim and windows improves safety as well as appearance. Deferring such major maintenance projects as blistering exterior paint and roof repairs or replacing an old water heater can result in even more costly repairs.

In figuring out what improvements are right for your home, consider current conditions and what enjoyment the results will bring. If you’re looking to sell, determine how improvements will improve your home’s appeal.

The three things most home buyers in today’s market look for are lighting, flooring and a fresh paint job. Updating bathrooms and kitchens with modern cabinets, countertops and tile will bring a fresh feel to your home and could be big selling point.

Energy efficiency constitutes another important area of home improvement. Installing insulation and upgrading to more efficient appliances can decrease energy costs while increasing the value of your home. Installing smart home technology — like energy monitoring systems and programmable thermostats — can make your home more attractive to buyers and increase its value.

While it’s nice to invest in your home, it’s important to remain mindful of the local housing market and what buyers look for. Making improvements that are out of line with the local market could actually decrease your return on investment. Do your research and make informed decisions.

When embarking on a larger home renovation project, it’s critical to find a reputable, experienced designer and contractor to guide you through the process. A good designer and contractor can offer valuable insights and advice; help you make informed decisions about layout, design and materials for your project; manage your budget; and ensure the project proceeds smoothly from start to finish.

Attending events can provide answers to questions and inspire ideas. The Home Builders Association of Western Colorado has scheduled its Home Improvement and Remodeling Expo for March 24 to 26 at the Grand Junction Convention Center.

Whether you plan to continue living in your home or sell, figure out what home improvements are right for you and your home.

Evaluate the current state of your home and what improvements will either bring you enjoyment or increase appeal and value. While a return on investment remains important, it’s not the only favor to consider. If they’re something homeowners will enjoy for years to come, some improvements are priceless.

Mike Urlacher is director of the construction and maintenance division of Bray & Co. in Grand Junction. The division offers services to help homeowners fix up, clean up and level up their homes. For more information, call 242-3647 or visit www.brayandco.com.