Interests and Hobbies      |     Antiques      |     Arts & Crafts      |     Automotive Repair      |     Culinary Arts      |     Family     |     Gardening & Horticulture    |     Genealogy    |     Photography     |     Sports & Recreation     |     Teen Interest & Issues     |     Travel Guides   

Home Improvement

Investigate the topic of home improvement as a leisure activity, which is any project designed to make one’s home (e.g., house, condo, apartment) better, bigger, or more modern. The term home improvement may also include conducting necessary repairs around the home without the help of a contractor. Examples of home improvement projects include adding an addition to the home or finishing the basement, as well as landscape work around the house. Many people associate home improvement with “do-it-yourself,” or “DIY.”

Home improvement projects may involve any number of construction-related activities, such as carpentry, electrical work, drywall repair or installation, plumbing, roofing, and tiling. Many homeowners who engage in home improvement projects enjoy the challenge of learning the new skills needed for the work, which can be gleaned from an enormous variety of books, television shows, and YouTube “how-to” videos. An added benefit is the lower cost of “do-it-yourself” projects. Home improvement stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s cater to the needs of do-it-yourselfers. During COVID-19, DIY home improvement, remodeling, and repair projects increased in popularity. eBook and database resources meet the needs of those seeking to learn how to fix common home issues and tackle DIY projects. Learning home maintenance can result in cost savings, increased energy efficiency, and curb appeal improvement.

Many homeowners find inspiration from the popularity of the HGTV (Home & Garden Television) channel, on which shows that remodel and renovate homes have the biggest ratings, such as Fixer Upper and Flip or Flop. These shows sometimes include a real estate component, in which renovations are made in order to sell a home at a profit. The concept of completing house renovations as a money-making venture, known as “house flipping,” began in the late 1980s when people began to rehab older homes and sell them for more than they paid. Resources that help people learn remodeling, gardening, and landscaping will appeal to the professional as well as the homeowner. People looking to increase their home value or explore decorating may not know where to start, and may simply need ideas to inspire a refreshed interior design. Others may need advice on seeking a professional contractor or obtaining a free estimate.

Contact my rep                   Find resources at my library

Home Improvement Resources

Gale provides scholarly resources to dive into home improvement projects, including databases and eBooks.


Gale databases give researchers access to credible, up-to-date content from millions of articles.

Gale eBooks

Gale offers a variety of eBooks covering a wide range of topics, including home design, decorating, building, and more. Users can add Gale eBooks to a customized collection and cross-search to pinpoint the article most relevant to the topic. Workflow tools help users easily share, save, and download content.

  • Idiot's Guides: Tiny House Designing, Building, & Living, 1st Edition

    Idiot's Guides: Tiny House Designing, Building, and Living, 1st Edition

    Alpha Books | 2017 | ISBN-13: 9781465466310

    Do you have what it takes to live tiny? Take the first step to achieving the dream of designing, building, and living in a tiny house—which are typically between 100 and 400 square feet. Idiot’s Guides: Tiny House Designing, Building, and Living is the one-stop guide into this innovative concept of minimalist living. Dozens of helpful images and a full-color insert displaying different types of tiny houses help you visualize your dream. The book explores what it mentally takes to become a tiny house dweller, and covers the best approach to designing and building a house that ideally fits your needs. It includes an in-depth discussion on foundation types, financing and insurance, and legal standards, as well as building techniques, must-have utilities, going off the grid, and home placement. Functional suggestions for décor, storage, and more are also featured. Bonus: three tiny house floor plans to illustrate what these homes entail.

    Contact my sales rep >>

  • Step-by-Step Home Design and Decorating, 1st Edition

    Step-by-Step Home Design and Decorating, 1st Edition

    DK Publishing | 2012 | ISBN-13: 9781465400895

    When it comes to restyling, redecorating, and sprucing up your home, the big question is where to start. Step-by-Step Home Design and Decorating has the answers. Everything you need to give your home a complete makeover appears in this eBook. Presented in a step-by-step format, from the planning stages to the finishing touches, it’s the most practical home guide there is. Since people often want to decorate their homes themselves (or need to, for cost reasons), this book helps you do the best job possible. Even the initial design and planning stages are presented step by step, to give you confidence when devising color schemes, designing layouts, and choosing flooring or lighting options. Approaching the home room by room, you’ll be encouraged to take on practical projects, like making blinds, covering cushions, putting up wallpaper, and more. Clear instructions, photography, or diagrams help at every stage. Comprehensive in scope and utterly practical, Step-by-Step Home Design and Decorating is an indispensable reference for anyone restyling their home.

    Contact my sales rep >>

Resources to Boost Your Research

From trending social issues to classic literature, Gale resources have you covered. Explore overviews, statistics, essay topics, and more or log in through your library to find even more content.

Access topics >>