Home improvement, also called house renovation or home remodeling, is the process of improving your home through a number of projects and tasks. This can include interior and exterior remodeling, fixing or upgrading fixtures and finishes, such as plumbing and lighting, building an addition or deck, installing a new roof or windows, and adding landscaping.
Home improvements can increase a home’s resale value and help it maintain or gain in market value. Some home improvement projects, such as a kitchen remodel or bathroom renovation, have a high return on investment and may even pay for themselves with the increased sales price when the house is sold.
The popularity of home improvement television shows in the 1970s and 1980s helped to create a demand for contractors, building materials, and DIY (do-it-yourself) projects. TV programs such as Bob Vila’s This Old House and Trading Spaces blurred the distinction between traditionally male-dominated realms of construction, repair, and maintenance and the more feminine sphere of interior design and decorating.
Many homeowners renovate their homes to improve comfort and function, and to add features that enhance livability. Energy-efficiency upgrades such as installing a heat pump or replacing older windows can reduce energy costs and add to the overall value of a home. Safety-related repairs, such as a faulty electrical system or leaky roof, are often top priorities. However, it is important to evaluate a project’s resale value and ROI before starting the work and always hire a qualified contractor.