HomeOutdoor Living Blog21 Home Improvement Ideas for 2023: Project Times, Difficulty, and ROI

21 Home Improvement Ideas for 2023: Project Times, Difficulty, and ROI

December 16, 2022
A beautiful, white home with new trim and fresh landscaping faces the camera.

Home improvement projects are an opportunity to customize your space to your taste and needs so your house feels like a home. They can also improve your home’s value and, in turn, contribute to your overall wealth. 

They’re not always easy to do yourself and they’re not always cheap, but home improvement projects are usually worth the investment, and can even offer a return on investment (ROI) of over 100%. If you’re looking for home improvement ideas for 2023, look no further. 

From budgeting for a new deck to deciding on the perfect paint color, we’ve compiled some popular home projects and the benefits of each to make your decision easy. 

In This Article:

Estimated ROI

Under $500$501-$2,000$2,001+

1. Nurture Your Curb Appeal

A photo of a back patio and furniture includes light illustrations to highlight the property's landscaping and additions like a new fence.

Curb appeal refers to a home’s exterior aesthetic, including its landscape design, porch decor, garden features like walkway lights, and more. Minor changes like fresh mulch and flowers can be done for under $100. Homes that need larger renovations, like new windows or roofing, may spend several thousand dollars on improvements, but can still see a return on their investment through perceived home value. 

  • Average cost: $-$$
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Increases home value by 7% when sold and improves buyer interest

2. Extend Your Space With a Deck

A new deck isn’t just an aesthetic upgrade — it extends your living area and creates flow between the interior and exterior spaces of your home. Homeowners can choose between a number of material options, deck sizes and styles, and colors and patterns to fit their aesthetic. 

  • Average cost: $$$
  • DIYability: Medium
  • Benefits: Offers a 62%-65% ROI and extends your outdoor living space

TimberTech Tip:
Wood decks are more affordable upfront, but low-maintenance composite decks have a lower lifetime cost and can look just as beautiful. 

3. Add Water to Your Garden

If you’ve perfected your flower bed, your grass is glowing and green, and you still feel like your garden is missing something, consider adding the element of water to balance your garden

Water features like a koi pond or small fountain can make your garden more peaceful and may even attract new wildlife to watch. However, they can also be pretty high maintenance, so do some research on which feature is right for you before you invest.

  • Average cost: $$$
  • DIYability: Easy-medium
  • Benefits: Increased home value and improved garden design 

4. Sit in the Shade

A pergola provides shade to relax outside throughout the day and can even be part of your garden if you include trellises or hanging plants. Other shade structures like cabanas are great for lounging poolside, and they can all add value to your property and protection from the summer sun. Plus, they come in a variety of colors and styles to match any home aesthetic.

  • Average cost: $$$
  • DIYability: Medium
  • Benefits: Increased home value and elevated outdoor spaces

5. Switch Your Siding

A two-story home photo includes light illustrations to highlight solar panels, upgraded windows, and other home improvement ideas.

The exterior part of your home is a major aspect of curb appeal, and despite your best efforts to keep your siding sparkling clean, colors fade and siding can crack over time. Installing new siding guarantees a perfect finish, and new extra-durable siding can reduce water absorption and maintenance needs. 

This is also a great opportunity to switch up your aesthetic with new colors, patterns, and trim for a home that truly speaks to your family. 

  • Average cost: $$$
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Offers a 67% ROI and improved insulation

6. Install Improved Windows

Experts recommend replacing your windows every 15-20 years to secure seals and keep drafts, weather, and bugs out. So if you’ve owned your home for a decade or more without an upgrade, it’s time to take a closer look at your windows. 

Windows are a crucial part of your home’s insulation and contribute to energy efficiency and security. New technology has also expanded the window market so you can customize your windows by need. Coastal homeowners may prioritize storm windows, while tinted glass in west-facing windows can reduce the sun’s heat and improve privacy. 

  • Average cost: $$
  • DIYability: Medium
  • Benefits: Improved look and insulation

7. Stand Out With Solar

Solar energy becomes more accessible every year, and within a few decades you can save enough on energy costs to cover the panels’ purchase and installation. That’s excluding the tax incentives and 4.1% increase to your home’s value. 

Solar panels may not work for every home. If your roof is covered by trees or due for a replacement, solar panels may not be a great choice. However, panel technology advancements mean that even homes in cloudy or stormy climates can take advantage of solar energy. 

  • Average cost: $$$
  • DIYability: Medium
  • Benefits: Increases home value by 4.1% and offers tax incentives

8. Make Your Home Impenetrable

An airtight home offers a number of health and environmental benefits for your home and family. It improves air quality by blocking outdoor dust and allergens, improves insulation for better energy efficiency, and prevents pests from moving in with you.

TimberTech Tip:
Your utility company may subsidize the cost of an energy audit to identify problem areas in your home.

Simple projects like fresh caulk and weather stripping to block any entrances is a great start to a more sustainable home. You can also get an energy audit to identify problem areas in your home, and your utility company may even help subsidize the cost.

  • Average cost: $
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Improved energy efficiency, pest prevention, and air quality

9. Consider New Colors

Large windows look out onto a patio and illustrations show interior home projects, like new curtains and flooring.

Home improvement projects like new paint give a fresh start to your home, but whether it adds value to your home can be a little controversial if you choose a bold color palette. Some experts recommend you keep it simple with neutrals to boost your home’s value, but don’t be afraid to design your home to reflect your personality.

A complete repaint of both the interior and exterior of your home can pay off regardless. Interior paint offers an average ROI of 107%, while fresh exterior paint improves curb appeal and offers an ROI of 55%. 

  • Average cost: $
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: ROI averages 55%-107%

10. Upgrade Appliances

Appliances aren’t meant to last forever and need regular maintenance to stay in top condition. Still, they’ll need to be replaced eventually, and as styles change, your old appliances aren’t just inefficient, but may be considered an eyesore. 

Buying new appliances outright is costly, but there are plenty of used appliance stores that can offer a great deal on a refurbished stainless steel oven or washing machine with all the bells and whistles. Real estate experts estimate that upgrading to stainless steel kitchen appliances may cost $4,229, but offer an increased home value of $5,982. 

  • Average cost: $$$
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Offers an ROI up to 41.5% and stainless steel finishes are most preferred by buyers

11. Add Fresh Flooring

New flooring can really open up and warm a room, but different flooring types offer different benefits. It’s no surprise that hardwood flooring is among the most popular, and despite its cost, can offer an average ROI of 118% when installed new. 

Natural stone and tile also offer moderate returns for the investment, while the most affordable options like carpet and linoleum are easy to install but aren’t as appealing to buyers and don’t offer the same perks for your home’s value. 

  • Average cost: $-$$
  • DIYability: Medium
  • Benefits: ROI up to 118% depending on your flooring material choice

12. Refine Your Finish

The little details really add up, and fresh hardware for your kitchen cabinets and doors provides polish to your home’s features. You can choose from a number of styles and finishes, including trendy minimalist matte black cabinet handles or ornate swirling door handles with a polished chrome finish. 

These hardware upgrades won’t radically change your home’s value, but they will work toward a more cohesive interior design that you’ll love as long as you own your home. 

  • Average cost: $
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Improved home decor cohesion and theming

13. Let in the Light

Lighting inside and outside has a surprising impact on the ambiance and safety of your home, and new fixtures or LED upgrades can entirely change the look and feel of your home. This is especially true if you consider how your fixtures’ finish complements the other hardware around your home, and what light color fits each room best. 

Be sure to measure your room’s height and consider how a fixture will fit so you don’t wind up ducking around a low-hanging hall light. Cool home improvement additions like smart LED strips or walkway lights outside can also add warmth while keeping pathways visible in the dark. 

Natural light is ideal, so you definitely don’t have to invest in all new fixtures. Instead, consider how new curtains or a lighter interior paint color can help your home soak up the sun during the day.

  • Average cost: $
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Improved safety and interior design cohesion; may improve energy efficiency

14. Create Picture-Perfect Framing

A door is just a door, but a door with beautiful wood trim that matches the adjacent window’s sills and trim looks far more elevated than just a door. Framing around windows and built-in features like doors and bookshelves are warm and welcoming, and can build on the feeling of home sweet home everyone’s looking for. 

New molding and trim can make your home more attractive, but it won’t really increase your home’s value. It’s also important to consider how outdated trim can hurt your home’s appeal, while custom and ornate molding can cost as much as $10 per foot to install. 

  • Average cost: $-$$
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Adds polish to the home’s interior design

15. Pop in Some Contrast

If you want to add a wow factor to your home, consider incorporating a pop of color or funky pattern into your interior design. Creative use of colors and designs adds visual interest and contrast to your home, and entirely changes the look and feel of your space. 

Simple upgrades like a fresh coat of paint on your front door or an accent wall with floral wallpaper make your home look unique and well planned. Just be mindful not to overuse accent colors and patterns so your decor doesn’t cross the line between bold maximalism and overwhelmingly busy.

  • Average cost: $
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Adds creativity and a personal touch to your home’s aesthetic

16. Install More Functionality

Six photos are arranged in rows to show interior home improvement projects, like bathroom upgrades and new kitchen countertops.

Built-in bookshelves, bay window benches, and back door mudrooms are just a few of the ways you can build functional and stunning features directly into your home. These are more complex DIYs, but they make your home entirely unique and add a touch of craftsmanship to really impress guests. 

Custom woodwork is particularly appealing to prospective buyers, and the extra storage can boost your home’s perceived value. Just be sure to measure the space and visualize your additions to ensure they won’t overwhelm your room rather than enhance it. 

  • Average cost: $$-$$$
  • DIYability: Medium-hard
  • Benefits: Adds unique charm and craftsmanship to your home and improves perceived home value

17. Finish Your Excess Spaces

One of the biggest impacts you can have on your home’s value is by increasing its livable square footage by finishing an attic or basement. These projects can have huge returns, but they’re not cheap, and you’re best off hiring a contractor

The estimated ROI of a finished basement project reaches around 70%, while the actual cost to remodel averages $71,115.

  • Average cost: $$$
  • DIYability: Hard
  • Benefits: Offers a 70% ROI and increases living space

18. Clean and Calm Your Bathroom

A total bathroom remodel can offer an ROI of 58% with costs starting at $27,164, but it will put your bathroom out of commission for some time. It’s also wise to go straight to a contractor with plumbing experience rather than trying to own the project yourself, and don’t forget to pull building permits. 

Instead, you can start small with DIY upgrades like new paint and trim, updated light fixtures, or new hardware to improve your home’s look and perceived value without breaking the bank. 

  • Average cost: $-$$$
  • DIYability: Hard
  • Benefits: Major remodels offer up to 58% ROI on the home’s value, while smaller cosmetic improvements are easy DIYs

19. Consider Your Countertops

Countertops can really make or break a kitchen’s design, and they’re just as functional as they are aesthetic. Some materials offer heat resistance, durability against scratches and water, or even antibacterial properties. 

Depending on the material and style you choose, new countertops offer a 60%-80% ROI. Granite and quartz are most preferred and offer the highest boost to your home value. 

  • Average cost: $$
  • DIYability: Medium
  • Benefits: Offers a 60%-80% ROI and may improve kitchen safety and aesthetic

20. Spend on Safety

Home security options have boomed in the last few years as wireless tech and smartphones allow us to watch, listen, and lock our homes from anywhere in the world. Even simple safety upgrades like window alarms or smart smoke detectors can provide security without breaking the bank. 

Of course, you can also install interior cameras to check on pets and feed them treats while you’re away, and doorbell cameras to watch for visitors and that package you’ve been waiting for. These upgrades may not improve your home’s value, but they do improve your comfort and protect your home. 

  • Average cost: $-$$
  • DIYability: Easy
  • Benefits: Improve your safety and protect your home from intruders or vandals

21. Gut the Garage

The garage doesn’t often get the time and attention it may need to look and function its best. If you’ve been neglecting your garage, consider now the perfect opportunity for a deep clean and reorganization. 

Storage is huge for prospective homeowners, so built-in shelves, pegboards, and drawers can improve your space and the home’s appeal when it’s time to sell. More significant upgrades like a new garage door offer some of the greatest ROI on our list, at around 93% of the project’s cost.

  • Average cost: $$-$$$
  • DIYability: Hard
  • Benefits: A new garage door offers an ROI of 93%, while smaller projects can improve prospective buyer interest

Every home has regular maintenance needs, and things like windows and kitchen appliances will need replacing every decade or so. If you haven’t taken inventory of your home’s condition or worked on any home projects in a while, there’s no better time than now to check out some home improvement ideas and plan your next project. 

If you’re ready to spruce up your garden and add a new deck, start with contractor quotes to build your budget. 

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