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10 - A fresh Coat of Paint

This can always freshen up a home and is fairly inexpensive as well. Be sure to stay away from bold color choices though if you are looking at placing your home on the market. Some prospective buyers cannot get past those sometimes very bold personal choices that you may have made and it can be a deal breaker. Keep it simple but fresh with warm earthy color choices.

9 - Replace Worn Siding

New Siding can really spruce up the exterior of a tired looking home in a hurry and can be inexpensive depending on the type chosen. There are many color choices and styles to choose from as well. You may want to consider adding some ridged Styrofoam insulation under it to also improve your home’s energy consumption performance and if you are planning on staying in the home for a few more years the extra insulation and money may be worth it.

8 - Install New Soffit and Fascia

Most homes you see that have wood soffit and fascia are usually in desperate need of some paint! Aluminum and vinyl products come in many colors and never needs painting again. This also is pretty inexpensive to do yourself.

7 - Landscaping

This can be as simple as adding some flowers or decorative stone, or even installing underground sprinklers. Homes with gardens, shrubs and a green lawn say “pride of home ownership” is prevalent. This will add curb side appeal to every home.

6 - A New Deck or Patio

Outside living spaces have become very common in recent years. If your yard has the room to add a new deck or patio, this is a way to enhance and increase your living spaces. If you already have a deck or patio, spruce it up with a fresh coat of stain or paint.

These next 5 projects are where the most “bang-for-your-buck” will be but they also will usually be larger in cost, skill and time!

5 - Develop Your Unfinished Basement

This can be a costly thing, so do your research first and make sure you have a plan and a budget and try to stick with both. Just blindly sticking a budget dollar amount you want to spend on the project then start building is a quick way to get in over your head. Pick a rough budget dollar amount and then research building supply prices to figure out if you can actually buy the materials that you are hoping to use.

You will also increase your home’s living space and as well as your space hearing requirements. Consider how you will heat and ventilate this space.

If you are going to renovate your basement, fire exits are a prime consideration.

It is important to ensure that you have dealt with any mold and moisture problems before taking on this project. If your basement is subject to water, mold or mildew you will want to consult with a building professional prior to proceeding.

4 - Replace Windows and Doors

There are a lot of different prices out there depending on where you go looking for these items, so do some comparing of specifications and prices before you buy. Also most places selling windows and doors will come to your home and measure and figure out what you need for sizes, this is very important because if you give them the sizes and the item does not fit you are usually stuck with it! Many people think that when they have a larger existing window in their home that if they order a smaller one (to save money on the cost of a new one) then fills in the remaining opening that they will save…. they are wrong! At least 8 out of 10 times, by the time you buy everything to change the opening size and build it, you usually have wasted time and money and are no further ahead. Remember on a project like changing windows and doors, you will usually need new interior trim as well as insulation in your budget. This is a must: make sure you replace old windows with EnergyStar energy efficient windows.

3 - Bathroom Renovation

It’s time to get rid of those leaking chipped and dated bathroom fixtures. This can be a pretty major job and will require you to dig deep in your skill set, tool bag and of course; your wallet. Again make sure you have a plan and a reasonable budget before starting and also if this is the only toilet and shower in your home, realize that you may be without it for up to 2 weeks! Plan Ahead! Replace old toilets and fixtures with low-flow toilets with help reduce your water consumption. This is a good step for your wallet and even a better one for mother earth.

2 - Changing Kitchen Countertops

Maybe your cabinets are OK and all you really need are new countertops. Most people right away think “GRANITE”. Well, yes it is beautiful but if granite is outside of your budget, you may want to look at some of the other options. Some other options include concrete countertops, Corion countertops, Quartz countertops and plastic laminate countertops. They all have their pluses and minuses so check them out to see what fits your situation and budget.

1 - Installing New Kitchen Cabinets

This is the big one; most stats out today say that this is usually the best way to add value to your home. It can be costly but when done right, it can have big benefits when it comes time to sell, and in the meantime, you can enjoy it. Depending on budget, design and materials; the sky is the limit on this type of reno. You can buy pre-sized cabinets right off the shelf and install them, buy semi-custom cabinets or completely custom built cabinets that fit your homes’ layout almost exactly with very few fillers and will be the color and sizes you need. Or you can contact your local “Kitchen Installer” and have them take care of the details. This project can be complicate. If you plan on doing it yourself, make sure you do your homework. Remember that the more customized cabinets will be built after you order so it will take usually a few weeks before you have them so keep this in mind while planning your time line for the project. If you are keeping basically the same layout you just had but getting new cabinets fine… but if the lay out is changing remember that you will likely need to move electrical, plumbing etc. so plan ahead.

As you see these projects can range drastically in the skill required, time and most importantly money! Be smart and plan on a budget well so that you project moves smoothly and also be sure not to take on more than you are capable of completing. A smart person knows when they should hire a professional.

For a complete list of professionals in your area, contact the Canadian Home Builders’ Association New Brunswick, 506-459-7219, www.nbhomebuilders.ca.

Don’t forget to get your permits for any work that requires one in your area either.