Knowing the best times to begin a project or book your Pro could help your project get off the ground faster and for less money. This is because the majority of people tend to schedule similar projects around the same time. By planning your project well ahead of time, however, and on a different schedule than the one that most homeowners are following, you can help get your project off to a better start.
The spring and the fall are the two busiest times of year for home improvement projects – but not the same types of projects. This is because many homeowners are influenced by things like culture, advertising, and subtle forms of peer pressure to get things done on a set schedule.
For example, when the weather begins to warm up in the spring, you’ll start seeing multiple advertisements by big box stores telling you it’s time to start working on your deck, landscaping, and patio. A quick look around your neighborhood will find your neighbors out doing the same thing, which will help inspire you to take on jobs surrounding the exterior of your home, from fixing up problems caused by winter – like leaking roofs or foundations – to sprucing up your home’s curb appeal.
The same is true in the fall when many people begin to think of their home’s interior for the winter ahead and the guests coming to visit for the holidays. This all adds up to an imbalance in the home improvement trades.
Why Going Off-Season Makes Sense
You may be wondering what’s wrong with just following the same schedule as everyone else – after all, there’s a reason why people tend to do these projects at these times of the year. But unless you need to have work done immediately – due to damage or need for a repair – waiting can be to your advantage.
Pros that do specific types of work, like roofing and siding contractors, are in high demand during their on season. This means that you may have to wait weeks just to get an estimate and be put on their schedule. This also means that you have less bargaining room on the price and that you may not even be able to get the Pro you really want.
Likewise, materials suppliers will be charging top dollar during high demand as well. It doesn’t make sense for suppliers to hold sales during these times of the year; everyone is purchasing anyway.
By waiting until off season – having your roofing and exterior work done in the fall or your interior work done in the summer – you can often have Pros competing for your job and find sales on the same materials that would have cost you a lot more at peak times.
The Best Times of Year to Complete a Project
Remember, it’s best not to wait on repairs because that may end up costing you more down the road. If you can wait for improvements and renovations until these times of the year, however, you may have an easier time completing your project.
Summer is one of the slowest times in the home improvement industry. Most of the landscaping is done, people are on vacation and generally not thinking about their homes. That’s why this is one of the best times of year to get interior work done. Pros will be glad to be working indoors out of the heat, and you’ll beat the rush of homeowners trying to fit their projects in before the holidays. Projects to consider for this time of year include:
- Getting your HVAC system serviced
- Kitchen renovations
- Bathroom renovations
- Getting new flooring
- Starting a new addition
- Finishing a basement
- Converting an attic
Most people are turning their thoughts to the indoors in the fall, but the weather is usually still good for a couple more months, which makes this an ideal time of year to have some work done on the outside of your home. You don’t want to start a big project, like an addition that might not be finished before the snow falls, but you can have work done like:
- Building a new deck
- Laying a new patio
- Putting in a new pool
- Installing new fencing
Remember that fall is also a great time to work on your lawn; seed it now to have a great start on your landscaping in the spring.
Winter is also a very slow time of year for home improvements, with most people focusing on the holidays and paying off their holiday bills. If you can plan ahead, however, winter is the best time of year to purchase materials like tile, wood flooring, cabinetry, and stone. Why? Because starting in December and January, you’re likely to find great deals on these products as suppliers clear out inventory before the spring.
Winter is also a great time to start any type of interior project as well, if you’re able to put it off from the fall.
Spring is by far the peak of all home improvement projects both inside and out. This is the time of year when people spruce up their homes to put them on the market and help them look great inside and out. This makes spring a tricky time of year to start any major project, just because both supplier and Pros are at their peak. Instead, turn your attention to some often overlooked areas instead, including:
- Getting a home energy audit, and fixing things like poor air seal
- Installing new insulation
- Installing attic ventilation
- Making repairs after a long winter
- Getting your ducts cleaned
With all that home improvement energy in the air, spring is also a great time of year to sit down and plan a major project for the upcoming seasons. Book your Pro now for work next fall or winter, do your research and find out the lead times on specialty materials, and meet with an architect or designer to have your plans drawn up. That way when a more favorable time arises, you’ll be ready to go.
By making smarter decisions about your home improvement options, you’ll be able to save money and reduce stress when the time comes for your project. Start planning for your future projects now to make the most of your time later.