Starting a home renovation can bring on a mixture of emotions, especially if you have never done one before. You are probably very excited to see what the new space will look like, but overwhelmed by the process. So many details go into a remodel project, so the planning stage is incredibly important to set yourself up for success and have a realistic idea of what your project will cost, roughly how long it will take, and what the final result will look like. Here are some of our top tips to help you prepare for your remodel project.
What is your goal?
Before getting into your remodel project, you should know what your end goal is. Are you remodeling your house in order to increase the resale value of your home or are you looking to stay in your home and enjoy the renovation for years to come? It is also important to know your neighborhood condition and consider which renovations might actually be overdoing it for the area if your goal is to increase the value of your home. Additions that bring the biggest return on your investment are two story additions with a master suite and downstairs living area, followed by master suite additions, added bathrooms, and finally sunrooms. While adding on a room or remodeling your existing space could be just what you need to keep you happy in the home you’re in for years to come.
Know your budget
Arguably one of the most important parts of a remodel is knowing your budget and sticking to it. Make sure to include a contingency fund that is about 10% of your overall budget for unexpected costs that come up as well as a budget for eating out at restaurants and potentially staying in a hotel during the renovation depending on what type of work you are doing. Take your time when coming up with your budget and do plenty of research to be sure you know what you want and you understand the costs associated. Get cost estimates from professionals and do your best to price out required materials in order to figure out your realistic budget. During a remodel project, it can be easy to go all out and get top-of-the-line products and materials, but that could quickly blow your budget, so understand where you want to spend a lot of money and where you can do inexpensive upgrades that will make your home look expensive.
Know your timeline
Similar to your budget, knowing your timeline is very important as well. Make sure to consider possible setbacks and delays and give yourself a realistic timeline so you don’t set yourself up for disappointment the first time you run into something that will push back your project. If your project involves plumbing or electrical work, understand that you will need more permits and inspections, which will take longer to complete the project. You also should consider that once you open up the walls in your home, you might come across issues like faulty wiring, water damage, or deterioration, which will also set you back some time and money. Don’t forget to consider the time it takes the clean out the project area, shipping and delivery of materials, and if there are any holidays during the remodel that might push your project back.
Now that you have a pretty good idea of what you want to remodel in your home, the budget you’re working with, and the general timeline you would like it done in, it is time to get some estimates from contractors. Do you research and look at reviews, talk to friends and family members who have had remodeling projects, and compile a list of 4-5 contractors you are interested in talking to. Check out the contractors’ portfolios to see what type of work they do and make sure their style is something you are interested in. Consider if you want them to have an in-house design team that will help make your new space look as good as it can, or if that is something you prefer to do yourself. Make sure you ask questions about what kind of projects they specialize in, how long they’ve been in business, and if they have their own team or use subcontractors. If you’ve never done a remodel and don’t have connections in the field, selecting your own sub-contractors can be complicated, and it is much easier to work with someone who has an in-house team or pre-established relationships so they work well together to get the job done. Ask the contractors about the insurance they have, if they are licensed to do this scope of work in your jurisdiction, and ask about what permits are necessary and how they will obtain them. Find out more about their process and make sure it is in line with what you are looking for. Ask about payment terms before starting any project and keep in mind that going with the cheapest option might end up costing you more in the long run due to low quality work and materials used. Finally, make sure they can get the job done within your proposed budget and timeline.
Prepare for the remodel
Now it’s time to clean up your space to prepare for the remodel. Declutter the area, pack up, or move any items in the renovation area. If you are doing a kitchen or whole house remodel, you should consider renting a storage unit or hotel nearby so you can still be comfortable through the process. Maybe you prefer to stay in your home and you want to build a temporary place to cook and eat so that you can remove all your major appliances and dishes.
Planning a home remodel is both exciting and overwhelming, but as long as you spend time preparing and doing your research before the actual project starts, it isn’t too bad. Working with a skilled team of professionals that you trust is important in ensuring you are happy with the final result. If you are ready to do a home remodel or you have any questions about the process, don’t hesitate to reach out! We would love to talk about your project and see how we can work together.