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Home improvement is a multi-faceted term used to describe a variety of home renovations. These improvements can range from small repairs to major remodeling. Many homeowners choose to do a home improvement project on their own or hire a contractor. Regardless of whether or not you decide to do the work yourself, it’s important to do your research before starting.

Whether you’re looking to renovate your kitchen or add a new bathroom, it’s a good idea to do some research first. Home improvement can increase the value of your house and can be tax deductible. In most cases, you’ll need a license to complete any projects that involve construction or repairs. If you do not have a license, you could be fined up to $5,000.

A home improvement loan can help you pay for your project. However, lenders will want to see that you have a decent estimate of what the project will cost. Typically, these loans are available at rock-bottom interest rates, making them attractive for homeowners. You can apply for a loan from an existing bank or through a lender online. Keep in mind that you’ll need to repay the loan with a down payment or a series of incremental payments until the job is completed.

Some home improvements are tax deductible, though you’ll need to keep track of the costs of the labor and material. This can help you recoup some of the money you’ve invested in your renovation. But some improvements only count for deductions if they’re done in the year you’re selling your home.

Another good idea is to get a home improvement credit card. Many of these cards offer introductory 0% APR periods for the first 12 months. You can use the card to pay for a new appliance, paint job, or other small home improvement.

You should also make sure that you are working with a licensed contractor. The law requires a written contract for any home improvement work. It should specify the details of the project, as well as the timeline. Be sure to check the contractor’s references and insurance.

Lastly, you should make sure that you’re not getting duped. If your contractor does not complete the work in a timely manner or for an unreasonable price, you may be able to sue him. Also, the attorney general can take action against fraudulent contractors. For example, if your contractor misstates the amount of labor involved in a project, he can be fined up to $250.

If you’re planning a large home improvement project, you may need to look into a home equity line of credit. This option is available to homeowners with a good credit rating. Your home’s value will be increased by the project, so you’ll be able to borrow against it.

Axiom’s recent survey asked consumers what projects they have planned for their homes in the coming year. Nearly 90 percent of respondents said they plan to spend more time on a home improvement project in 2021 than they did last year. They’re also most likely to focus on improving the outdoor area of their houses, including a new deck, fence, or patio.