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The Top Five Home Improvement Materials to Not Cheap Out On & Why

07 January 2021

Having been in business for over 40 years, we can’t count the number of times a homeowner called us to fix a DIY flub or shoddy work completed by a rookie contractor.  One of the biggest reasons these scenarios keep happening is because well-intentioned homeowners opted for cheaper than recommended materials.  The ugly secret about this is that they end up paying for this mistake both with their wallets and their emotions.  While there are some home improvement products you can cut corners on, we implore you to forego this decision on the below materials.

Flooring: When it comes to holding up against heavy use by pets and children, there is no single flooring material that isn’t susceptible to wear and tear.  However, a hardwood floor that can be refinished more than once is ideal.  Although bamboo may have more initial upfront costs associated with it, the material wins high marks for its beauty and durability.

kitchen

Roofing: Responsible homeowners know to acquire three written estimates prior to hiring a roofing contractor.  While it can be tempting to sign with the contractor that provides the lowest cost estimate, doing so can be risky.  Many times, roofers can offer lower rates because they’re installing lower grade shingles which have limited lifespans.  This hardly seems like a wise move when major manufacturers like GAF offer 50-year, non-prorated warranties on labor and materials, effectively making their roof the last you’ll ever need to install on your home.

Timberline_American_Harvest_Brandywine_Dusk_House_Photo

Countertops: Unless you’re outfitting a rental property or limited use cottage, just say no to laminate countertops.  Comprised from particle board and plastic, they’re notoriously easily to crack, especially on the edges.  They are also prone to warping and staining.  While countertop materials like quartz, marble, limestone, and travertine are more expensive than laminate, their beauty far exceeds that of laminate.  In addition, premium countertop materials up your home’s resale value.

modern kitchen with marble countertops

Windows: It’s a wise idea to seek out quality windows over builder grade because their energy efficiency can create a dramatic savings on your heating and cooling bills.  In addition, quality windows from brands like Infinity® from Marvin have a longer lifespan than anything you’ll pick up in the bargain bin of your local big box store.  Furthermore, top-tier windows from reputable manufacturers can be ordered specifically for the opening they’re being installed in, alleviating the concern of air and water infiltration.

marvin infinity black bedroom windows

Rain Gutters: The primary purpose of your home’s gutters is to divert water away from its foundation.  Although they come in at a lower price point, gutters with seams weaken over time and eventually leak, rendering them useless.  Many topper devices deliver lofty promises of warding off clogs, but all too soon homeowners are stuck with the chore of removing debris from their gutters.  When shopping for gutters, opt for seamless aluminum gutters with an oversize design that can handle substantial amounts of rainfall that are accompanied with a clog-free guarantee, such as LeafGuard® Brand Gutters.

Watch LeafGuard® Brand Gutters Being Installed: 

View Our Twin Cities Home Improvement Projects:

north oaks mn gaf glenwood shingles

Thomas’ GAF Glenwood® Shingle & LeafGuard Brand® Gutter Installation in North Oaks, MN

st paul windows

Dyan’s Infinity from Marvin® Window Installation in St. Paul, MN

LeafGuard

Cheryll’s LeafGuard® Gutter Project in Minnetonka

Our Twin Cities Home Improvement Reviews: