Making the right small home improvements can help you get closer to reaching your next dream house without requiring a huge financial investment. The beginning of a new calendar year is an ideal time to take on these kinds of projects. Home sales dwindle in the winter, so it won’t be a problem to keep your house off the market while making a few upgrades. Furthermore, simple improvements focused on energy efficiency can reduce your heating costs for the season, creating some immediate returns that you can put into your next down payment.
Here are three home-improvement projects that can be especially beneficial for the new year.
1. Make safety-related improvements
An unsightly fixture or outdated carpet may be annoying, but it probably won’t have a major negative impact on your home value – those are easy fixes. However, issues that have an adverse impact on the safety of your home can significantly detract from its value or force you to make upgrades before selling. Making a few safety-focused upgrades can be incredibly valuable, and a recent Home & Garden TV report recommended two key strategies that can be particularly beneficial here:
- Invest in radon detectors: Radon is a fairly common problem in homes – current estimates indicate that 1 in 15 homes have high levels of radon. This gas can cause lung cancer and similar health problems. High levels of the gas can also be identified with an inexpensive (often as little as $20) detector. Demonstrate your home’s safety with a simple, small investment that can show good air quality.
- Put in quality vents: Many homes lack proper ventilation in attics, bathrooms and similar places. This results in an increased likelihood of mold and mildew in your walls. In some cases, mold may only require a thorough cleaning, but it can also demand specialist intervention to pull out walls, kill spores and repair your home. Taking the time to invest in a few exhaust ventilators now can lead to significant savings down the road, especially as you’ll probably be less likely to open windows and otherwise vent spaces in your home during the winter months.
2. Shore up your ducts
Heat, air conditioning and ventilation systems are often central components of many homes today. However, they can also be a primary source of energy loss as air leaks out of ducts. You don’t want to lose precious warm air on cold winter days, using up more oil, gas or electricity as you try to keep your home at a comfortable temperature. A Houselogic report pointed out that air ducts are among the most common energy wasters in a home, but making some upgrades in your HVAC system, such as using sealant tape to close up leaky ducts, can dramatically reduce costs.
“Air ducts are among the most common energy wasters in a home.”
3. Upgrade windows and doors
Improving your windows and doors can shore up any weak points in terms of sealing in warm air in your home to keep heating bills down. At the same time, it can give your home a fresh feel. These factors make the upgrade a popular option around the new year, Do It Yourself reports. A better seal for your home can also reduce costs, delivering a quick return on investment.
If you’re thinking about purchasing a new home this spring or summer, you may want to take advantage of the new year to make key upgrades to improve the value of your current house. These small upgrades pack some punch, but they also won’t break the bank, giving you a nice opportunity to gain significant returns as you save up for your next property. Contact First Centennial Mortgage when you are ready to make that new purchase, and we can help you get the financial support you need.