Home Improvement: How Do You Prioritize Projects?

When we told friends and family we were buying a home, the first thing everyone said was, "Get ready for projects." Well, it's been just over a year since we became homeowners, and on average we devote two weekends each month to home improvements. With an ever-growing list of what needs to be done (how does that happen, by the way?), how do you prioritize?

The first projects were easy. Scrape popcorn from the ceiling and paint before moving in furniture; replace the broken sliding door with energy-efficient French doors before we moved in, and clean out the overgrown backyard before bulk pickup day.

But what comes next? Energy-efficient windows, installing a dishwasher, or bidding for solar panels on the roof? We know that there are energy improvements to be made, but we're finding, like most homeowners, that budget often dictates the next move.

With that in mind, we're making improvements as we're able. In lieu of installing new windows, we're turning to better window coverings to keep out the heat and light. And instead of going for solar, we're letting a few trees grow taller, providing shade on the house.

How do you prioritize your home improvements? Do sustainable and energy-efficient projects take precedence, or are they relegated to the back seat?

Most importantly, do you have any advice for homeowners who aren't sure which project to pursue next?

Related posts:

5 Money-Saving Green Improvements for Your Rental
7 Home Improvements that Could Save You $1500 in 2010
Crowdsource Your Home Improvement

(Image: Flickr member eelke dekker, licensed under Creative Commons.)

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