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Top Five Home Improvement Ideas to Consider

Home improvement is a very widespread field, with many ideas from which to choose. During the summertime, countless people think about remodeling their homes, making improvements to certain rooms of the house, but are often not sure which improvements to do. Low-cost home improvements that not only improve your home’s appearance, but also help you save money in the long run, are the hottest plans currently. I’m writing this to list these ideas and hopefully, help spark your imagination. These are the top 5 home improvement ideas for 2009:

1.) Installing “Green” Technology – Due to the need of almost everyone to save money right now, and because of the increased awareness of the need to save our environment, the top home improvement plan right now is the installing of “green” technology, also known as “going green.” This could include such installments as solar panels, power-generating windmills, environmentally-friendly cleaners, energy efficient heating and cooling system, and energy-saving light bulbs. Solar panels may be costly at first, but they will save a huge amount of money in the long run by generating your own electricity. The same goes for the energy efficient heating and cooling system – it will help you save money on your electric bills. Windmills can not only help you generate your own electricity, but they can be made with parts from the junkyard. You can’t get much cheaper than that! Also, many of these “going green” improvements will help you qualify for a tax break and help out the environment. It’s a win-win situation.

2.) Install a programmable thermostat – This may be a very simple improvement, but don’t underestimate it. Installing a programmable thermostat will help save money on your electric bills. How does it do this? Instead of having the air conditioning or the heater running all day, the pre-programmed thermostat only turns on the AC or the heat when the temperature of the house gets too hot or too cold. This keeps the central heating and cooling system from running unnecessarily and, in turn, saves you money.

3.) Re-insulate your home – Making sure your home is well insulated will also help save you money on electric bills. That is because a well-insulated home will not let out cool air in the summer, and it will not let out warm air in the winter. That also keeps hot or cold air from drafting into the house.

4.) Paint or re-decorate your living space – This may seem like a very simple improvement to your home, but it is effective. Painting your rooms and re-decorating in soothing colors and accents will help you relax and want to spend more time in your newly decorated home. Pamper yourself along with the new designs and you will feel like you are at a spa getaway.

5.) Put in a patio – This is probably the most expensive option (unless you have close friends or family who are carpenters) but it is worth the splurge. A patio or a sun deck will allow you to relax and soak up some rays in your own back yard. You can grill out with family and friends, sun bathe on a chaisse lounge, or watch the stars from your patio. The good thing about putting in a patio is that it is actually less expensive than adding a room onto your house. A patio may be a small addition, but it will more than pay for itself with all the hours of relaxation it will afford.

No matter which home improvement idea you decide to choose, the payoff will be well worth it. Even if these ideas aren’t what you are looking for, there are many other low-cost home improvement ideas. This year, less is more is the approach to home improvement, and saving money is the best thing.

Top 10 Home Improvements Include Attic Insulation

It’s exciting to look in the various home magazines to get ideas for the many upgrades that you can make to your home. From granite to stainless steel to the best designer color schemes, the changes you can make are limited only by your imagination. But what homeowners are doing today to make improvements may surprise you. How could attic insulation be considered a desirable upgrade? Discover the top 10 home improvement projects.

You may be surprised to discover that the top ten home improvements for the New Year include upgrading your attic insulation. In years past, during a booming housing market and reduced ownership times, many homeowners considered cosmetic fixes to their home that would give it added visual appeal. These types of improvements included granite countertops, upgraded fixtures, and pretty stainless steel appliances. These beautiful additions to an older home allowed prospective buyers to quickly fall in love with its look. But these days, homebuyers want a different sort of look.

Today, homebuyers want to look into their wallets after they purchase a home and discover that they still have a little extra cash at the end of each month. With rising utility costs, logical upgrades made which will reduce this recurring monthly expense is a welcomed sight. For many, this monthly cost savings is something they can fall in love with.

Attic insulation is just one of the easy and efficient upgrades that can be added. When using a radiant barrier attic insulation which has an easy insulation procedure a homeowner can quickly slash their monthly utility costs.

Other efficient home improvements include:

*Dual or Triple paned windows

*Solar water heaters

*Radiant floor heating

*Energy efficient water heaters

*Energy efficient appliances

*Water filtration systems

*Solar controlled sprinklers set on a timer

*Hardscaping and Landscaping which uses native plants

*Effective radiant barriers used in walls and duct systems

In each of these upgrades the goal is to create a strategic system for the home that will save money each monthly on various utility costs. Most homeowners begin this process with their attic insulation since that is a project that most DIY’ers can accomplish on their own. Depending on the age of the home and your goals for this investment, families then consider other options to see which make the most sense to include. The curb appeal of these upgrades may not be instantly appreciated; however, any prospective buyer will appreciate the real value of energy efficient upgrades.