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Save money, time and energy when you tackle these home improvements in tandem

Most of us spend our day multi-tasking. At work or home, we want to maximize our time and resources in order to accomplish the most work while expending the minimum required effort. Home improvement should be no different. In order to make the most of your home improvement resources, it makes sense to undertake certain projects in tandem.

Roof replacement and skylight upgrades, new countertops and new sinks - some projects go together like peanut butter and jelly. Doing these projects at the same time can allow you to cut labor costs, save time and achieve the best possible results. Here are three sets of home improvements best done together:

1. Roof and skylights

Replacing an old or damaged roof ensures the rest of your home stays protected from the elements. A roof replacement returns nearly 68 percent of its cost when you sell your home, according to Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Value Report. Replacing the roof entails removing the old shingles, tiles or other deck covering and the flashing around any existing openings in the roof. It’s an ideal time to inspect all those openings and upgrade any rooftop structures, such as skylights. It’s also the most convenient and affordable time to replace or install new skylights.

If your home has older skylights, the flashing around them may have deteriorated over time, making them susceptible to leaks and less energy efficient. Modern Energy Star-qualified fresh air skylights, like the No Leak Skylight line from Velux America, can improve indoor air quality through passive ventilation, greatly reduce dependence on expensive artificial light sources, and save on energy costs. What’s more, the skylight’s specially engineered flashing and other features virtually eliminate the risk of leaks so there’s a 10-year no-leak warranty with the units. You’re getting a new roof with a new warranty so it’s a plus to coordinate your roof and skylight warranties.

Don’t have skylights but thinking about installing them to make your space more functional and enhance the enjoyment of your home? Again, roof replacement time is also the best time for a new installation. Opt for solar-powered fresh air skylights, with stylish and energy efficient solar blinds, and the improvements, including installation costs, are eligible for a 30 percent federal tax credit. To learn more about skylights or to find a certified installer in your area, visit

2. Garage door and garage door opener

Replacing a garage door is a great investment, even if your builder-installed basic door is still functional and in good shape. Installing an upscale garage door costs an average of about $2,791, and recoups nearly 89 percent of that cost at resale, according to the Cost vs. Value Report. A new garage door can have a major impact on your home’s curb appeal, and a newer, sturdier door that is energy efficient and air-tight can help improve your home’s overall energy efficiency.

While you’re investing in a new garage door, it’s a great time to upgrade your garage door opener as well. Homeowners often don’t think about the opener until it stops working, but the device contributes to your home’s usability, convenience and security. Installing one in tandem with a new garage door can help to reduce labor costs and allow you to upgrade from an older, louder model - such as a chain-drive system - to a quieter and stronger one, like a belt-drive opener.

3. Countertops and sinks

Typically, kitchen remodeling projects involve upgrading existing countertops. Moving from laminate to an upscale material such as granite improves not only the appearance of a kitchen but also its resale value. Remodeling Magazine says a minor kitchen remodel retains nearly 83 percent of its value.

While installing new countertops, simultaneously replacing an older sink with a newer model is a great way to continue an upscale look and save on labor costs. It’s far easier to install a new sink at the same time as the countertops than to do so later. While you’re upgrading the sink, consider a new faucet as well to complete the updated look.

Undertaking complementary home improvements together is a great way to make the most of your investment - and save time and money as well.

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