by Lisa Jackson | 6:26 am

If you’ve got a spare weekend and want to do something to improve your home, take a few seconds to read the advice that follows. While not everyone can do it themselves, even those who are hiring a professional, will benefit from understanding a few of basics of home improvement.

Don’t waste water due to leaky faucets or plumbing. Check them regularly and have any issues addresses as soon as possible. Along those same lines, use cold water to wash all your clothes. It will reduce the strain on your hot water heater and add time to its lifespan.

Lastly, you should check the ball cock of the tank. If the ball cock washer is worn or damaged, simply remove and replace it. An easy indicator of ball cock trouble is a float ball that is positioned correctly with a higher than normal water level.

Instead of going it alone in the vast word of home improvement, hit up your relatives and friends for advice. If you wait till the project has begun to ask, you might have a difficult time finding the help. You might also have a hard time finishing your project in a timely manner, adding stress to the work you do.

You can make decorative pillows easily. Sew some old band shirts, old jeans, and shirts with neat logos around your decorative pillows. This adds a nice personal touch to any room, giving it an entirely new personality.

When hiring someone to perform home improvement work on your residence, do not pay cash. Always pay by either check or credit card; you will have a documented trail showing that your contractor has been paid. If you pay cash, it could become your word against his word, and you won’t have any proof that you followed through with payment.

When you are fixing up your real estate, don’t waste money buying commercially made primer paint. Go to your local home improvement store and buy several cans of the paint that they mixed that someone did not like. Have them pour it all into a larger bucket and mix it to a medium shade of gray. This will save you more than half of what you would have paid.

To give an ordinary room a sleek and finished look, add some decorative molding. Molding is highly sought after by many buyers, and can make a room look more put together. Molding is surprisingly easy to install, and is fairly inexpensive. To really make your molding pop, paint it a color that compliments your walls.

Get an electrician to install outlets inside cabinets located near your appliances. This can make plugging your microwave in really easy, and the cord won’t be easily visible. A simple fix like this prevents a needless cord hanging around in your kitchen air.

Home Improvement

If you are selecting a home improvement contractor, be sure to watch out for scams. A good contractor will not solicit door-to-door but will wait for you to come to them. Also, while you will be expected to pay something up front, in most cases a reputable contractor will not expect full payment until the job is completed.

When deciding on your next home improvement project, consider updating to a luxury bathroom. Add a bathtub with massaging heads or a luxurious shower stall with high tech showerheads. Use color to give a feeling of serenity, and don’t forget to go for extra size, and all the trimmings, like plush towels. There are many wonderful design shows on TV to give you fabulous ideas.

If you are going to do a large renovation to create a large master bathroom consider installing a separate shower and bathtub. This may not seem like something that is that important, but many buyers are more interested in homes that have separate areas for both, since two people can get ready at the same time.

Before you begin painting the exterior of your home, it is critical to repair and prepare the surfaces you plan on repainting. Your paint job will not be durable if you do not prepare the surfaces properly. If your house has siding, any section that is damaged must be repaired. If the surface you are repainting is wood, remove any peeling, flaking, or blistering paint, before applying a new coat. This difficult job of removing paint can be done by scraping or sanding. Be sure to wear safety equipment, such as a dust mask and protective goggles, when removing the old paint.

Now that you have a basic understanding of home improvement, in general and the types of projects you should be looking into, you can see how it has the potential to benefit the quality of your home, as well as, your bottom line. You’re ready to get out there and tackle the weekend.

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