Home Improvement Tips for First Time Homeowners

The thrill of being a home owner is difficult to explain until it has been experienced firsthand. The sense of pride and accomplishment that comes from owning a home is a feeling unto its own. One of the first things that homeowners often immediately do after moving into their home is personalize it with their own furniture and wall art. Even before all their boxes from moving day are unpacked, new homeowners are contemplating furnishing and home improvement projects that they would like to undertake.

For many, home improvement means building a swimming pool in the backyard, including a gazebo, or adding additional rooms to the home. For others, turning a house into a home may mean undergoing a massive outdoor landscaping project or perhaps even remodeling the kitchen. Often, focusing on such large undertakings can overshadow other smaller yet equally important projects that help to make everyday life a richer experience. Before diving head first into massive renovation projects, consider the following useful home improvement tips for first time homeowners:

Start Small

With an entire house and yard to serve as a canvas, the options are seemingly limitless when it comes to home improvement projects. Too often though, the small and unique details that make life enjoyable are sadly overlooked, that is, until they begin to cause problems. For example, consider the annoyance caused by pests.

Insects and rodents can be found anywhere whether your first home is older or is new construction. Ants are the most common pest problem in households across the US. While exterminators offering high price services will try to convince you that treating your home every six weeks is the only way to rid them from your home, a household insecticide such as a liquid ant killer should do the trick for a fraction of the cost. An ultrasonic repellent is also a great pest control solution if you have children or pets, as they do not rely on harsh or dangerous chemicals. As an added bonus, ultrasonic repellents also keep away rodents, cockroaches, and spiders, which is something especially important if you live in an area where there is continual construction.

Save Money

Since first time homeowners are, in many cases, used to paying utility bills associated with apartment-style living, the first set of bills can be a massive shock. Windows, often an overlooked area, are one of the ways in which homeowners can minimize the amount of money that they spend on electricity monthly.

Many people wrongly assume that solar screens are the only way to prevent household heat loss and air leakage. While solar screens do cut down on electricity usage, they are extremely costly to install inside of your home. The easiest way to save money and make both your home and life more energy efficient is to tint your windows. Vinyl window tinting film is a permanent and inexpensive solution that can be applied to your existing windows. In the time that it would take to schedule a solar screen consultation, every window in the home could be tinted and forgotten about. The best part about tinting your windows at home is that if you later on decide to go for the pricey solar screens, it is very easy to remove the tint.

Increase Value

Many first time homeowners become so caught up in the excitement of owning their first home that they often forget just what a shrewd investment they have made. Like all investments, there are several steps that one can take to increase the value with relative ease. Again, most people look at landscape and swimming pools when they are considering home improvement, but kitchen improvements are what actually raise the value of a home the most.

Unfortunately, kitchen remodeling is also a costly project to undertake. Appliances, tile floors, new paint and cabinets can all add up to dizzying heights and an even more towering cost. Rather than being talked into debt-inducing remodeling projects at your local home improvement store, take stock of your kitchen and consider what really needs to be updated the most. Rather than sanding and painting or purchasing replacements, use this low cost cabinet make-over that no home improvement store will ever tell you about.

In stores you can now find PVC sheets in wood grain patterns that are available in a variety of shades. Simply cut the sheets to fit your tired, cracked or chipped cabinets and affix it in place. In less time than it takes to find the tools needed to refinish cabinets, your kitchen will look refreshed for pennies on the dollar and will look great.

Allan Young is a freelance writer and blogger who writes about home improvement and maintenance, often focusing on specific products such as the Dual Saw.

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First Steps to a New Kitchen

When planning a new kitchen, the first step is to figure out what you need in your new kitchen and decide on a budget. Whether you are thinking of a small or large renovation, your contractor or remodeler can give you an idea of how to allocate your budget. Here are some suggestions to help you get started.

How’s the Performance of your Kitchen Now?

If the current layout and design of your kitchen is not functional enough for you and your family, then you may want to adjust the flow of the kitchen. The kitchen is a central gathering place and families spend many hours a day there. It’s really important that you’re happy with the design and function of the space because it is where you see your family at the beginning and at the end of each day.

Spend Wisely

When deciding your budget, it’s very helpful to prioritize what you need and what you want in your new kitchen. Make a list on the things you definitely need to change in your kitchen and then another list for the other things you would like to change, if the remodeling budget allows.

Renovate your kitchen wisely because it is usually the best investment you can make in your home. Hire a professional kitchen remodeler if you want major layout changes.

It’s Not Just About the Cabinets

Planning a kitchen remodel takes some time and there are many things you’ll need to consider, like flooring; lighting fixtures; and windows. You’ll also have to decide where you want your windows placed. Do you want to refinish your wood floor or replace it? What kind of structural changes will you need to make? Consider if you’ll want any new openings made for doors or windows or maybe you’ll even need an addition to provide enough space for the new layout. Also, give some thought in advance to paint/finish and trim options. These can be the “icing on the cake” for a kitchen and warrant careful consideration. They are often overlooked by homeowners and wind up being a rushed decision made as the project is nearing completion.

Behind the Walls, Other Expenses to Consider

A kitchen renovation is the perfect time to deal with any underlying issues like old or outdated plumbing, electrical wiring and insulation. It is easier – and therefore less expensive – to deal with any of these issues now. No one wants to tear apart a brand new kitchen, so you want to be sure that all of the out-of-sight items are completely up to date and will last for many years to come.

When you want to conserve energy, the best investment you can make is to insulate the walls. In many older homes you’ll find inadequate insulation or even no insulation at all. When winter or summer comes, an insulated kitchen will stay at a more comfortable temperature for your family. Also, more importantly, a properly insulated kitchen will help keep your pipes from freezing in winter.

Give a little thought and planning on your kitchen remodel project and it will get started without a hitch!

We turn your home remodeling dreams into reality with creative solutions to achieve your goals, both functionally and aesthetically, within your budget using quality products and materials.

Home Improvement Projects Are Important But Safety is First

Every year, around 1.6% of American households embark on a key home improvement plan. Only two other loan application desires are more popular than home improvement projects requests. With the rise in home-improvement cases, accidents and injuries have also increased. In this article lets review the use of ladders as they are one of the most usable equipment in almost all the home improvement project whether commercial or residential.

Whether in use inside or outside, tools and equipment must be dependable and operated safely. Reliable gear is essential to safety management. Confidence in the equipment is critical. Many home improvement projects require the use of a ladder. When using a ladder in the project consider the following features.

The ladder should be in compliance with OSHA standards. If the ladder does not comply with OSHA, it should be eliminated as a ladder choice. With the OSHA rules in place it is possible to minimize the number of accidents that take place using the ladders

Use a ladder prepared for the quantity of weight being applied. Never load the ladder beyond the manufacturer’s specifications for weight capacity. Verify the weight capacity before purchasing a ladder. Consider the weight of the person using the ladder as well as the load to be carried by that person.

Check the material the manufacture used to create the ladder. Make sure the material is strong enough to not only hold the weight but to prevent it from damage from dents or twisting. Verify that the connections are securely attached to the legs. Use of a quality-manufactured ladder averts accidents.

If the home improvement project requires ladder usage on an uneven surface, use a staircase ladder or a leveler. Stability is a key factor in safe ladder handling. If the ladder is still unsteady, a helper can add stability by holding onto the ladder while it is in use.

If possible, use a transportable work platform as a place for objects such as paint or tools. The platform eliminates the need for continuously climbing up and down the ladder. This not only averts dangerous trips but eliminates the need to carry heavy or awkward object up the ladder. Make sure the platform has a weight capacity suitable for the objects to be placed on it.

When visiting the home-improvement store, bring a list of the desired features that you would like to see in the ladder which you will use in your home improvement project. Ask the contractor friend you have or a home builder what they recommend for people like you. Also mention the project and stuff you will use it for.

Refer to the list when examining potential products. If the store does not carry a safe, reliable ladder, purchase one from another store. Safety is worth shopping around for.

Ladders provide extended height in order to complete projects otherwise inaccessible. However, utilizing a safe ladder and applying safety measures avert possible dangers and provide homeowners a greater likelihood of a successful project.

Melissa is writing on home improvement and Kitchen remodeling.. Learn great money saving tips on her blog Liberty kitchen cabinet hardware which is on Kitchen remodeling ideas and Tips on buying cabinet hardware like Liberty Cabinet drawer pulls . She write Reviews on Kitchen Hardware at site Liberty Cabinet drawer knobs

First Steps To Home Remodeling

Article by Michael Brown

Home remodeling has become a national pastime, a passion and sometimes an obsession. We all want our homes to look better and feel more comfortable. Home remodeling magazines and television programs are everywhere, and the home improvement industry is booming. Almost everyone is in the middle of a project or about to embark on a new way of updating the home. It can be easy to do and extremely rewarding. If you are thinking about taking on a remodeling project, following a few basic steps will make the process more enjoyable.

The first step to be considered when planning your remodeling project is the basic design of your home. Most people begin a project by thinking ways to make their homes look better, and considering possible design options to improve the look, feel and aura of the place. This is where the concept of design for home remodeling comes into play. To plan your design, decide whether you want to hire a design expert, an architect or another home remodeling professional to come in and visualize your ideas. It will be necessary to create a design that you can afford, and will really love. You want to create a rapport with the professional you hire, to get them as excited about the project as you are. Sit down with your architect or design, come to an agreed plan, determine how much you can afford, and be sure to stick to your budget.

The second consideration for home remodeling is the project implementation. Plan and review your home remodeling design with your contractor, and consider any suggestions that he or she may have about the progress or the costs of the project. Choose the materials and products that you will need to successfully complete your home remodeling project. If possible, first purchase the materials you’ll need right away, then later you can pick up additional products you’ll need to complete the job. Make sure you consider the required time allotment and ask your architect, designer or contractor to come up with a detailed construction schedule. There will be steps to follow for each job and crews to schedule, so it’s important that you don’t overlook this important step in planning your project.

A conference is necessary to ensure that your home remodeling project is completed successfully. Insist that you meet with your home remodeling contractor, architect or designer, job-site supervisor and any other construction crewmembers involved in your project. Consider this a brainstorming session in which you can make note of important matters, consider new ideas and prepare for any possible changes from the original plan. Everyone involved in every step of the home renovation must be made aware of any changes to the original plan. It is also important that you set ground rules for your home remodeling project. Express these rules to your contractor and jobsite supervisor, and prepare a communication plan that will ensure your direction will be passed along to everyone working on the project. In such case, the primary contact person will generally be the job-site supervisor. A home remodeling project is a huge investment, so be serious about the entire process. Pay attention to every detail, and feel free to make comments or ask questions regarding the progress.

Finally, make the area easy for the crew to get the job done. Remove furniture and personal belongings from the work area. Try to put up a temporary kitchen area and have toilet facilities available for the crew to use. Make trash bins accessible and ask if construction fencing is required. If large quantities of supplies will be delivered, such as lumber or flooring, be sure that there is ample and accessible storage room. This area should be secure and protected from the elements, as the materials may not be installed on the same day they’re delivered.

Remodeling your home is a rewarding experience. Hiring a contractor, architect or home designer can help ensure that the job is done properly. The expense will fully pay for itself in the satisfaction and enjoyment you’ll receive from your newly remodeled home.

Michael Brown writes for several popular online magazines, on home and family and home renovations themes.

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