Here's what you should know if you are looking to renovate your home

Home renovations don't have to break the bank. Here's some tips on how to save on small projects.

Home renovations don't have to break the bank. Here's some tips on how to save on small projects.

Updating your home does not have to break the bank. Small projects, from installing new fixtures to roof repair, can improve the look and value of a home.




Maintenance


HVAC maintenance

G&S Mechanical suggested the following heating, ventilation and air conditioning system maintenance schedule:
In the spring, make sure the system is blowing cool air for summer
In the fall, check the heat is working for winter
Monthly air filter changes and checks on the system’s drain

Roof repair

Kangaroof recommended:
Looking for missing shingles which expose a home to water damage
Keeping tree limbs away from the roof so animals cannot access it
Cleaning gutters regularly
Sealing around pipes and boots, the most common areas for leaks
Checking the chimney flashing for areas where water can enter

Plumbing

Christianson Air Conditioning and Plumbing made suggestions on how to properly maintain a plumbing system:
Tankless water heaters should be flushed out annually
Check all toilets for wear and tear in older homes and the possibility of constant running water
Ask about pressure gauge checks; Pressure Reducing Valves are under constant high pressure and can slowly go bad and restrict flow and pressure




Do-it-yourself


Modernize your kitchen or bathroom with new fixtures

Chris Siebenthaler from Wilson Plumbing, which services customers in the city of Austin, said fixture replacement is one of the best “bang-for-your-buck” plumbing projects.

“Faucet, sink and toilet replacements add a fresh new [look] to the home without breaking the bank,” he said. “Stick to name brands, and consult your plumber or showroom consultant for educated fixture recommendations.”

Siebenthaler recommended keeping all manuals and receipts for plumbing fixtures and appliances. In the future, these documents may come in handy when repairs and replacements are necessary.

Paint and upgrade cabinets

When selling homes, Isabel Affinito of JB Goodwin Realtors, which has offices throughout Austin, said she finds kitchens and bathrooms stick out the most to buyers when making decisions.

One way to freshen up the look of a kitchen or bathroom is to renovate the cabinets. She said homeowners can paint their cabinets—white is particularly popular for kitchens.

“The shape of the cabinets isn’t a problem; it’s usually the colors and the hardware,” she said.




Cheap jobs


Transform your bathtub into a stand-up shower

Converting bathtubs to showers is one of the fastest ways to create immediate value, said Josh Agrelius, the owner of bathroom renovation company Re-Bath of Austin, which serves the metro area.

“People are taking less baths,” he said. “Especially with the droughts we’ve had, people are water-conscious.”

To get started, homeowners need to research companies they may want to work with. Agrelius said they should make sure they are hiring qualified professionals, using online resources and the Better Business Bureau as resources.

“You might spend a little bit more, but it will be done the right way without cutting any corners,” Agrelius said.

Update tile to create a sanitary, safe environment

Traditionally, bathing area walls were installed with porous grout, Agrelius said. This can cause the walls of tubs or showers to become moldy from moisture.

“Here in Texas, you can’t control the heat, and [the bathing area is] a wet area,” Agrelius said. “The most effective way to control water is to eliminate the grout by installing slab-like walls.”

By using slab-like walls, including large-format tiles, stone and acrylics, homeowners can avoid the creation of a potentially toxic area, he said.

Invest in landscaping

Affinito said she recommends people selling their homes only invest in renovations that will result in more than a 100 percent return. Hiring a landscaper to add mulch and clean up the lawn for a few hours is often worth the investment in Austin.

“You don’t have to go crazy with it,” Affinito said. “It makes a huge difference to your curb appeal.”


MOST RECENT

Commissioners on Nov. 22 voted to approve a density change to preliminary plans for The Preserve, a neighborhood that city documents said could include 565 single-family homes at the northeast corner of Teel and Panther Creek Parkways. (Courtesy city of Frisco)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Neighborhood near PGA Frisco could see larger lots; ERCOT says Texas power grid ready for expected winter demand and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 24.

Local and state officials have made statements welcoming Samsung to Taylor following the announcement that the city will be home to its new $17 billion semiconductor fabrication plant. (Courtesy KXAN)
State, local officials react to Texas governor, Samsung joint announcement

Local and state officials have made statements welcoming Samsung to Taylor following the announcement that the city will be home to its new $17 billion semiconductor fabrication plant. 

Bill Curci is a chief operating partner for Shuck Me, a seafood restaurant in Fort Worth. (Bailey Lewis/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Fort Worth restaurant Shuck Me is fishing- and family-centric; a guide to Houston's 2021 Thanksgiving Day Parade and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 23.

Snow covers I-45 in Houston during Winter Storm Uri in February. (Shawn Arrajj/Community Impact Newspaper)
ERCOT: Texas power grid ready for expected winter demand

The state's electric grid manager also said extreme weather could once again result in outages.

Cable television jewelry channel Shop LC will relocate its headquarters to Cedar Park with a $50 million capital investment. (Courtesy city of Cedar Park)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Shopping network moving headquarters to Cedar Park; affordable housing projects come online in McKinney and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 22.

Photo of a Moderna vaccine vial
FDA, CDC expand Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccine booster authorizations to all adults

Booster shots could be available to all adults ahead of the holiday season.

Kirby Ice House will build a location on over 4 acres in The Woodlands Town Center. (Courtesy Howard Hughes Corpp.)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: US 183 North construction to begin early 2022; Houston-based Kirby Ice House planning location in The Woodlands and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 19.

Ali Khataw, left, and Fred W. Heldenfels, right, will start their terms Jan. 1, 2022. (Courtesy Elizabeth Christian Public Relations)
The Austin Chamber of Commerce announces new leadership and board members

The Austin Chamber of Commerce announces new board chair Fred W. Heldenfels and board chair elect Ali Khataw who will begin their terms Jan. 1, 2022.

The residential community will have an infinity pool and shared amenity space at Four Seasons Private Residencies Lake Austin. (Courtesy DBOX for Austin Capital Partners)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: Four Seasons to open Texas' first stand-alone residential property off Lake Austin; Slim Chickens opens in Pearland and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 18.

H-E-B held a ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new store Nov. 16. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: H-E-B opens new Leander store; San Antonio high school bands make final top 10 in national contest and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 17.

Developer JVP Management and architecture firm Torti Gallas   Partners on Nov. 15 presented early plans for Project X. Project X is the placeholder name of a 112-acre proposed development to revitalize the failed Wade Park project off the Dallas North Tollway and Lebanon Road. (Matt Payne/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI TEXAS ROUNDUP: New plans in the works for land where defunct Wade Park project sits in Frisco; 5 business updates to know in Katy and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas in Texas as of Nov. 16.