5 Steps to Successful Home Improvement: Step 1

5 Steps to Successful Home Improvement: Step 1


This is the first part of a five-part series discussing the steps to successfully complete your home remodeling project.

home improvementIf you are planning to renovate your home, then outlining a plan to accomplish this work is imperative. Time, money, and your personal sanity are at stake when you undertake any home renovation, therefore we’ve come up with a five-step plan to help you successfully complete your work. This article deals with the foundational part of your project: analyzing home improvement costs.

Home Improvement Done Right, Step 1

Step 1: Your twenty-year-old home is showing its age as the deck is beginning to rot and one of your bathrooms needs to be retiled and the sink replaced. Come to think of it, there are several other projects you want to get done including updating the kitchen, replacing storm doors, and widening your driveway.

What was at first a relatively low-cost job has mushroomed into a rather sizable home remodeling project. Still, you know that you want to remain in your home for many more years and the work to be done will add value and comfort to your home.

7 Points to Consider Before Starting a Home Remodeling Project

Before you get started, the following seven points can help you analyze the numbers related to renovating your home:

  • Home remodeling considerations – will you get a good return on investment (ROI) if you renovate your current home or should you consider moving to a new home? The type and cost of renovation, market valuation, and neighborhood home comparisons will help you answer this question.
  • Predicting neighborhood values – no one can say for sure what a neighborhood will look like some 1, 5, or 10 years or more down the road, but you probably have a good idea where your neighborhood is heading. Pouring money into a home in a declining neighborhood will make it virtually impossible for you to recoup your investment.
  • Calculating your home value – A rule of thumb says that investing 20-30% of your home’s value in renovating costs falls within a reasonable expenditure range. That means if your home is worth $300,000, then spending between $60-90,000 for home improvement is acceptable.
  • Calculating home remodeling costs – your location and the season will determine what you can expect to pay to renovate your home.
  • Estimating your payback figures – your personal needs and comfort are the main factors when considering a home improvement project, but wouldn’t it be nice to know that if you decided to sell your home that the improvements you made actually added value to your home?
  • Calculate financing costs – using monthly payment and monthly affordability calculators will give you the actual numbers you need to understand how large of a project you can reasonably undertake.
  • Tax benefits of home renovation – if you qualify, you can deduct the related interest portion of your home improvement loan from your federal income taxes. Interest rate charges and other fees related to closing your home improvement loan are also tax deductible.

A Plan Is In Place – Let’s Go To Step 2!

Once you determine the benefit of renovating your home and arranging financing, then it is time to go to the next steps: specific home remodeling ideas and how to find a contractor. SayEducate will be posting 5 Steps to Successful Home Improvement: Step 2 next week; we look forward to your return!


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About Author

Matthew C. Keegan

Matt Keegan is a freelance writer and editor as well as publisher of "Matt's Musings", his personal blog. Matt covers campus, consumer, business and financial topics on various websites and blogs, and has been published in the "Houston Chronicle", "Sam's Club Magazine" and "Wisconsin Golfer".