6 Popular Home Renovations To Avoid This Winter at All Costs

a young couple take time out from scraping walls in her new house to check against their architect plans.
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When you’re stuck inside during the cold months of the year, you might be tempted to start a home project. Every little blemish in your home that seemed like it wasn’t noticeable before is now a huge deal since you’re spending more time cooped up. However, there are some renovations that you should just pass on, especially with costs going up due to inflation. 

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GOBankingRates researched and tapped experts to determine which winter home projects are simply not worth the price this year.

Large-Scale Renovations

You might think winter is the optimal time to finally add on that extra bedroom, but Mike Peck, VP of installation for Leaf Home Safety Solutions, would beg to differ.

“This year, inflation, an impending recession, supply chain issues and a rise in residential construction costs mean it’s time to rethink larger home renovation projects in favor of smaller, more affordable options,” Peck said. Instead of completely remodeling your kitchen, maybe you can opt for just changing out the flooring instead.

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Installing Traditional Bathtubs 

Though there is a chic factor to a traditional clawfoot or large jacuzzi tub, Peck says that ultimately, this might not add to the value of your home.

“Renovations on traditional bathtubs are a waste of money because they are limiting and can decrease the accessibility of your home. As more homeowners are aging in place, it’s important that your home has accommodating safety features.” Peck recommends instead putting in a walk-in shower, which is much safer, a better investment and can be done in a day or two. 

Expanding the Garage

As you’re spending more time inside, you might realize you need a lot more room for all of your stuff. You think making the garage bigger so you can store more in there is a good idea. The problem is that adding onto a garage is a very costly endeavor. The average garage expansion costs anywhere from $16,000 to $39,000, and you’re not guaranteed a full return on that investment, in terms of how much it adds to your home’s value.

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Like other projects on this list, it’s best to break it down into smaller tasks. An idea for the garage is to install better storage so you can open up more space for your extra items. This usually costs under $5,000, which is a better return on your investment overall. 

Putting In a Backup Generator

Especially with the inclement weather during the winter, you might be thinking about putting in a generator to protect you and your family against power outages. This seems like a smart idea, but only install this if you live in an area that will call for it a lot throughout the winter. Experts say this installation doesn’t add a lot of resale value to the home, so putting it in for “just in case” purposes probably is not worth it.

Aesthetic Window Updates

Outdated windows can really make a home stick out, and not in a good way. However, if you’re just updating the windows so they look better, it’s not a worthwhile project. Peck recommends making your windows energy-efficient to help keep you warm during the winter.

“Installing energy-efficient windows and window treatments make it harder for drafts to disturb your set thermostat temperature. Evaluating your window treatments this winter will prevent your thermostat from working overtime to keep cold weather out, thus lowering your electricity bill.”

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Peck adds that this will also add some value to your home. “Window quality is a major consideration during a home appraisal. After the holidays, the real estate market will heat up again. Installing windows that are catered to your region’s climate will benefit your home’s overall value by avoiding excessive monthly energy costs.”

Updating Kitchen Appliances

After cooking a turkey for Thanksgiving and a ham for Christmas, you may be getting sick of the older appliances in your kitchen. It might not be what you want to hear, but it’s not recommended to replace your appliances unless they’re broken. You would think adding top-of-the-line items to your kitchen would bring up the value of the home, but that’s not really the case. The return on investment ​​on upscale kitchens is only 59.7%. It’s better to use your appliances until you simply can’t anymore.

In the meantime, you can spruce up your kitchen area with more useful shelving and storage that will elevate the look of the space, while also providing you with more ways to keep things in order. 

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About the Author

Sam DiSalvo is an LA-based comedian, writer and actor who's performed all over the country. Her written work has appeared in numerous digital publications. As a copywriter, she's worked with a variety of major brands including GoldieBlox and Thrive Causemetics. Sam loves dogs and is currently perusing leisure suits to buy for her corgi mix, Barry
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