Do-it-yourself projects that offer big ROI

Photo courtesy of News USA

Photo courtesy of News USA

Versatile tools make it easier for DIYers to make home improvements, such as installing hardwood floors.

NewsUSA — The road to homeowner bliss may involve necessary upgrades, but don’t rush into large home improvement projects. Small upgrades can significantly boost the value of your home.

According to the 2009 Home Sale Maximizer survey, updating a home’s lighting costs $200 to $300 on average but increases home value by $1,000 to $1,500 — that’s a 572 percent return on investment. Repairing floors amounts to a 250 percent return on investment, while updating bathrooms means a 172 percent return on investment.

Some products enable homeowners and DIYers to tackle home improvement projects without spending money on multiple tools. For example, can be paired with attachments that enable it to quickly and easily cut through a wide variety of materials, including wood, metal, Plexiglas, drywall, ceramic wall tile and even porcelain floor tile.

Not sure where to start? Try the following home improvement projects to enjoy small investments with big returns:

• Install can lights. Recessed lighting is a great way to transform any room. To make circle cuts, pair your spiral saw with a drywall bit and a circle cutting guide. Select the desired hole size, make a pilot hole, tilt the tool at a 45-degree angle and plunge it into the material, lining up the center point. As you plunge, bring the tool to a vertical position and cut in a clockwise direction using steady, even pressure.

• Update your bathroom. Decorative tile backsplashes are a natural choice when updating a bathroom. For wall-tile work, install a wall tile bit on the spiral saw. Start the tool away from the work-surface and then plunge the tool at a 45-degree angle into the tile while bringing to a vertical position. Follow a clockwise motion.

• Install hardwood floors. From shaping hardwood to cutting openings for heating registers, use the spiral saw combined with a jigsaw handle attachment and a multipurpose bit. Start by tilting the tool at 45 degrees and bring it upright as you plunge through. Finish with the tool vertical to the surface, and cut in a clockwise cutting motion.