Top Home Improvement Projects in Buffalo, NY

Katherine Oakes
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Buffalo, New York sits at the shores of beautiful Lake Eerie, Niagara Falls, and even the border of Canada. Still, but it’s a distinctly American city with a culture and spirit all its own. Thanks to the bitter cold, the best way to brave the winter months is by keeping warm with good friends at one of the many local taverns and restaurants. It’s because of this reason and many more that make Buffalo a great place to live. Plus, it’s a city full of growing industries, including the real estate market.

Thinking about moving here yourself or buying a fixer upper? Here are some of the top home improvement projects in Buffalo, New York.

Sunrooms and indoor patios

Buffalo is known for having some pretty extreme weather. With the winter season bringing a cold, harsh climate full of snowstorms, heavy winds, and even ice, it makes the milder months all that much more enjoyable. So when it comes to home upgrades, many homeowners wonder whether or not they should invest money in building a beautiful outdoor deck or patio that can only be enjoyed for part of the year. In addition to that, outdoor structures are also exposed to the elements, so you run the risk of it being weather damage—not to mention the extra money spent on upkeep and maintenance.

The solution is simple—add a sunroom. These enclosed areas are a homeowner’s best bet for getting to invite the outdoors in, even in the dead of winter. Floor-to-ceiling windows or walls allow more sunlight in to naturally warm up your home and improve your mood during a season when many find themselves stuck with a case of the winter blues. In the spring or summertime, simply open the doors and windows and the sunroom can function as an indoor patio, as well. How’s that for home improvement?

Hot tubs or jacuzzis

Yes, you read that right. This is an affordable project that not only increases your return on investment when it’s time to sell, but it won’t cost much to install, either. In most Northern states—and especially in Buffalo—installing a pool may seem like a great idea during the warmer seasons, but in reality it’s an addition that can turn many buyers off in the long run. A hot tub or a jacuzzi is easy to install and take out. Plus, as far as maintenance and everyday upkeep goes, well, it’s a whole lot simpler overall. So, keep your green space and skip the inground pool complete with diving board and a waterfall—install a hot tub instead.

Going green

On the top of mind for many homeowners—and even those in the remodeling industry—is green building. More and more, people are discovering the financial benefits of making a home more energy efficient, in addition to the new jobs that are created in this growing industry. Since the cost of central heating in Buffalo accounts for a large portion of the utility bills, updating insulation, installing new windows, and making a home more energy efficient overall has become a priority for homeowners in recent years.

In Buffalo’s low-income neighborhoods on the West Side, there have been efforts to support renovation projects that remodel old properties and turn them into sustainable and energy efficient homes. Not only do they install geothermal heating and cooling systems but they also upgrade the windows and insulation as well. On top of that, the workers installed Energy Star-rated metal roofs to create ‘cool roofs’ that offset heat absorbed by the sun. The result? A net-zero energy house. Thanks to these sustainable projects, there has been a spike in green jobs and an improvement in the quality of life overall. Sounds pretty cool to us.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on March 5, 2018 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Katherine Oakes

Katherine is a contributor from Modernize, the online service that connects homeowners with contractors specializing in energy-efficient home improvement projects.
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