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Summer is a time for fun in the sun and enjoying the extended daylight hours.

Make the most of your increased motivation by starting some home renovation projects that will improve the resale value of your home and your experience as a homeowner.

Rather than focusing on the traditional coats of paint and power washing the siding, take a look at some of these innovative ideas to make your home stand apart from the rest. Here are four innovative summer renovations you should try this year.

Optimize Space

spacesaving 4 Innovative Summer Renovations You Should Try

You’ve likely heard about Feng Shui before– the Chinese system regarding spatial awareness, organization, and health. Well, the Chinese ancients may have been onto something.

Clutter can impact your stress levels and directly correlates with your wellness and self-perception. While purging one’s belongings can help with the issue, it won’t solve all the problems, especially if you have limited space to work with.

Your first innovative summer renovation project should be to optimize the space you have by altering furniture, adding storage options to wasted space, and making the most of every inch of your home.

Consider installing shelving above the doors in your home to store books and treasures. Install drawers in your stairs for seasonal gear that only gets used for part of the year, such as winter outerwear. Reduce bulky end tables with compact, built-in shelving. Build a loft bed over the desk in your combination office and spare room.

Tear Down Some Walls

chic-open-floor-plan 4 Innovative Summer Renovations You Should Try

The thought of permanently altering your home can be scary. However, there are merits to the popular open-concept style in modern houses. For one, heat and cool air will travel through your entire home more easily, cutting your heating and cooling bill drastically. You will also have fewer flat walls, which will make you think more critically about buying things you don’t need.

Don’t feel pressured to make this a DIY project– you should hire an expert before removing any walls. Consider working with a contractor who has experience with Building Information Modeling (BIM), a method that uses “a collection of data that help with planning, design, construction, and ongoing management of modern buildings.” (source: http://www.photomodeler.com/products/how-it-works.html)

It’s important that you don’t accidentally remove a weight-bearing wall. Otherwise, you’re free to alter things as you desire. Open your kitchen into your living room and install a breakfast bar. Turn two bedrooms into one large master suite. Open up the smaller rooms in your unfinished basement to create a large recreational space.

Install Magnetic Walls

Trying to figure out the best way to hang that big plasma screen tv where there are no studs? Sick of putting holes in your walls every time you want to put up a new photo arrangement? It might be time to install magnetic walls. This futuristic sounding service is offered by a company called Magnektik, and they install magnetic panels in your walls that are strong enough to adhere shelving and furniture to.

Magnektik claims that their panels can hold pieces up to 200 lbs each, and can be installed so that it’s visible or hidden entirely. You could install these in your living room so that you can constantly rearrange the location of your photos and shelves, in your bathroom or backsplash to hold appliances or even at the back of your closet to hold seasonal wear behind your other clothing.

Imagine walking into your entryway after a long day of work and simply sticking your keys to the wall beside the door. Imagine your kids being able to drive their toy cars along the wall of their room– the options are endless.

Smart Home Upgrades

There are some simple smart home applications you can install without too much work. Others, however, require some careful planning, time, and dedication. The benefits of committing to building a smart home far outweigh the work you’ll have to put in to upgrade.

First and foremost, consider replacing a few outlets with USB outlets, so that you can plug your phone directly into the wall. Keep in mind, however, that wireless charging will likely make these obsolete within the next decade. With the help of an expert, replace your thermostat with a smart thermostat that you can sync with temperature sensors throughout your home so that your system will know to direct air into one room rather than another.

Motion sensors are the epitome of convenience and efficiency when it comes to lighting. Many businesses use these already for their bathrooms, and you can get plug-in motion sensor lights for your hallways. Imagine the cost savings of having a light automatically turn on or off when you enter or exit a room. Think about the lack of arguments with your family about turning the lights off.

There are plenty of innovative renovations that you can start this summer. With some careful planning and smart investing, your home will increase in value and become even more of a private retreat from the world.