5 weekend projects to improve your home's value


With the holiday weekend looming over us, many Americans will be enjoying cookouts, trips to the beach, and all the excitement playoffs bring. For those homeowners who aren't dictated by plans, perhaps this weekend is a nice opportunity to tackle some of those home repairs we've been putting off for a while. While you might be thinking about the time and expenses required to dedicated to such a task, the reality is that there are plenty of inexepensive options available that will make an immediate impression not just visually, but fiscally as well. Here is a list of ten simple and easy projects that won't break the bank, and still leave you time to enjoy the time off from work and responsibilities:

1. The de-clutter weekend
De-cluttering should be the first job homeowners cross off their list before starting any other project, agents and real-estate investors say. Get a friend, colleague or casual acquaintance (who won't mind offending you) to walk through your house and give it to you straight. What is distracting? What needs to go?  Come up with a system of folders for bills, mail and important papers. Clean out a junk drawer or drawer in your entertainment center to hold these folders, so they can be cleared off counters easily. Likewise, clear the decks of a lot of your kids' toys, putting only 15 or 20 in rotation at a time. Donate everything that no longer has any use to you. Figure out a way to get your clothes, books, appliances, papers, toys, art and photos under control, and the difference will be immediately noticable.
2. Make over your cabinets
The kitchen is the most important room in the house to get right, and cabinets are often one of the biggest problems. You don't need to get your cabinets refaced or replaced to make them look presentable. If they're scratched or look dated, just spring for a couple of cans of paint and put a new finish on them. White and other light neutral colors work best for most kitchens and bathrooms. If you have a larger kitchen that gets a lot of natural light, you could even try a dark chocolate brown or black..
Once you're done painting, don't neglect the finishing touch: the hardware. Choose something simple and relatively modern for the pulls, preferably in a brushed nickel. Steer clear of brass, brightly colored glass or anything decorated with pictures of birds or flowers.
3. Patch and paint
A fresh coat of paint in the living room, kitchen and master bathroom — the most important rooms in the house — will pay big dividends. Paint is one of, if not THE, easiest and cheapest things you can do to freshen up your home and add zip to it.
Just don't try to jazz things up with bright colors, experts say. The most universally appealing shades are neutrals: yellow-based tones such as off-white, mushroom, medium brown or taupe. Stay away from anything too dark, as it tends to make the room look small.
A few more paint don'ts:
  • Don't try to experiment with accent colors or walls. (Most people don't get this right.)
     
  • Don't choose four or five different colors in the house. A satin wash of one color or a couple of related colors should flow smoothly from room to room.
     
  • Don't leave those wallpaper borders up when you paint. Their time has come and gone.
     
  • Once you're done painting, don't ruin the fresh look by re-hanging too many of your family photos or pieces of art.
4. Spiff up your home's curb appeal
One quick way to add value to your home is to spruce up what you see from the street. Spend a weekend cleaning or replacing your mailbox, putting up new street numbers that match the style of your house, cleaning your storm door and windows and touching up chipped paint on your front door.
Take a good hard look at your landscaping and trim back any shrubs around the front that are unruly. Get rid of lawn ornaments, toys, leaves and other debris from the yard, as well as those tools or construction materials propped against a fence. If you see bald spots, plant a few flowering shrubs. A pot of flowers by the front door, or flowering plants along the walk is a nice touch, too, agents say. Power-wash your driveway and walk (and the house, if you have vinyl siding). A tidy front yard makes the house itself that much more inviting.
5. Fix your lighting
You don't have to go crazy here, as most experts would agree. Just replace anything damaged, dated or distracting. Get rid of that Hollywood dressing-room-style lighting that frames your bathroom mirror, or at the very least, replace all of the bulbs. Ditch that tacky, low-hanging chandelier over the dining table and replace it with a simple pendant lamp hung a little higher, preferably 3-4 feet above the underlying table. The same goes for that energy-efficient, but oh-so-ugly fluorescent tube in your kitchen. Trust us, almost nothing looks good under them.
You don't have to spend a lot on new fixtures — $100 or less will do a significant dent to taking your lighting issues completely out the picture.
After you've spent all this time taking on all these projects, your home will finally be ready for that refinance you've been considering. Call Majestic Home Loan at 1-877-546-2145, and let us help you see just how much that hard work pays off in the end. 

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