You already know that making improvements to your home, not only adds beauty to your living area, but also increases your home's value. To make sure you are getting the most value for your effort, you need to find the best advice to help with your home improvement project. Check out the valuable tips in this article. Be sure to consider the type of material you plan to use before building an addition to your home. Using wood may increase your insurance premiums because of the added risk of fire. Steel and concrete are more durable and fire-resistant, so choosing one of these options can help keep your annual insurance premiums low. Don't be afraid to use bright colors in the decor of your home. Paint a wall pink or red if you want to. It's only paint, you can always re-paint it later. The most important thing is letting your own personality shine through in the style of your home. Caulking gaps between drywall is a necessary step in home improvement. Even if you complete a beautiful paint job, if you don't first completely caulk the gaps between the panels of drywall the room will look unfinished. Unfinished gaps will even show up when you wall paper a room. Caulking is a must, anytime you drywall. When you are considering home improvement, think about your surroundings so your improvements make sense. Doing something strange like an uninsulated sun room at a high northern latitude might make potential homeowners scratch their heads and hesitate to make you an offer. Add value to your home, not negative features. Always make sure to cover your furniture and floors when painting. Taking this step prevents paint from staining your floors, carpeting and other objects. When painting, use newspapers on your floor to reduce staining. You can use a plastic sheet or paint cloth to block your floor if paint splashes. Your house can look more chic by adding a little garden area in the front. First decide what kinds of plants are able to grow in your climate and purchase them from a store. Plant them in a nice design near your porch or doorstep. For a nicer and cleaner finish, add some small fencing around your garden area to fully define the space. Shut the toilet lid! No, it's not a girl boy thing! Toddlers can topple into an open toilet and drown! Why take the chance of such a horrible thing happening when all you have to do is shut the lid. Keeping the bathroom door closed is another good practice when small children are in the house. A good home improvement tip is to make sure you write up a contract with your handyman when they come out to assess any problems. This will reduce the extra charges that you will have to face. If you don't have a contract in hand, you might end up a very dissatisfied consumer with little to no recourse. You can buy solar lights by themselves and there are tons of styles to choose from. To adequately light a path, you will want lights powerful by electricity. Although these lights are more costly, they will last longer and are more reliable than solar models. Tie or cut the extra cord hanging from your blinds. Children and pets can become entangled in these cords and strangle. Leave enough of the cord so that your blinds still function, but extra cord is of no benefit. Tie them or cut them off before there is a terrible accident. Purchase your building materials at re-use stores such as Habitat For Humanity's Re-Store. When you do this, you are saving resources and recycling your money by investing it in your own home and in providing homes for the homeless. If you hire a contractor, make my company sure s/he does not throw out usable materials. Either re-use them yourself or donate them to the Re-Store. When making a major renovation to your home, check into what kind of return for investment that you can get from it. The reason for this is that certain updates can be a bit of an overkill depending on what neighborhood you live in. This is especially important if you might be planning on selling your home within a couple of years of doing this renovation. If you do too much, you might not get your money's worth out of it. When you prepare and use effective tips like these, it's easier to avoid the hassles and unexpected costs that can happen with poorly planned home improvement projects. Once you start improving your home, you'll never want to stop!