Splurge vs. Save: Which Projects are Worth the Spend?

Before embarking on a project, consider how much time you’ll spend in the room you’re working on. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Home sweet home. It’s this sense of pride that drives so many of us to embark on home improvement projects each year, some of which can be extensive and expensive.

Before investing in any project, there are a few questions you should ask yourself to help you evaluate how you’ll live in the space.

For example, how long do you intend to live in the home? What will the space be used for in the future? Will the size/dynamic of your family change? What is your remodeling budget? What rooms do you use the most?

After considering some of these things, educate yourself on the actual remodeling process. As you’ll quickly discover, there are countless online resources with ideas and tools to help plan out each step of the remodel.

Merillat, known for its innovative and functional cabinetry and storage, has some helpful resources to help you visualize and plan new kitchen or bath spaces.

For most of us, budget constraints give us pause when considering where to splurge and where to save. Here are a few things to think about when determining which projects to invest in and which you might consider delaying or scaling back on.

Chelsea Lipford Wolfe painting a wall in a garage
Painting is a relatively easy do-it-yourself project that can dramatically change a space. (3 Echoes Content Studio)

Is It DIY-Doable?

There are some projects you can handle on your own, assuming you do the proper research and preparation.

For example, painting is a relatively easy do-it-yourself project that can dramatically change a space.

While many homeowners dread the tedious process and prep that goes into it, the decision to do it yourself can save you thousands of dollars.

Landscaper laying turf/sod on a lawn
For many homeowners, projects like landscaping typically fall into the “nice-to-have” category. (welcomia via Canva)

Is it Urgent?

Think of your home as ever-changing and constantly improving. For the average person, who doesn’t have an unlimited budget, it means having to bench some projects for a while.

Sarah Reep, director of designer relations and education for Merillat, encourages homeowners to come up with a project priority list, starting with “must-haves,” ending with “nice-to-haves.”

For example, projects like landscaping, basement renovations and luxuries like an electric fireplace typically fall into the “nice-to-have” category. They may be better off delayed or completed in phases.

Beautiful white kitchen sink cabinet, seen from the exterior, with modern pulls and wooden floor
Kitchen projects are a solid investment both for resell value and everyday enjoyment. (©Sonyachny, Adobe Stock Photos)

Will It Be Permanent?

Consider how long the room will stay as you design it.

For example, kitchens and bathrooms are investment-worthy because they always serve the same purpose and are two of the most lived-in spaces of the home.

Cabinetry and countertops designed to support the ways you’ll use these spaces are a solid investment both for everyday enjoyment and resale value.

Here are the top 11 home improvement projects for return on investment, according to Money.com:

  1. Refinish hardwood floors: 147% return on investment
  2. New wood flooring: 118%
  3. Upgrade insulation: 100%
  4. Converting a basement to a living area: 86%
  5. Closet renovation: 83%
  6. Converting an attic to living area: 75%
  7. Complete kitchen renovation: 75%
  8. Bathroom renovation: 71%
  9. Kitchen upgrade: 67%
  10. New bathroom addition: 63%
  11. New primary bedroom addition: 56%

Get a Consultation

Interior designer consulting with a young couple
(New Africa Studio)

No matter what the project, designers are a great resource. Consider engaging one early on in the process.

“One of the biggest advantages of working with a designer on a home project is that they really understand functionality while accomplishing your desired style,” says Reep.

Designers can also help you determine your priorities and offer advice on which projects should be a focus and where you might be able to cut costs.

For more tips and ideas, visit merillat.com.

Further Reading


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here