Home remodeling or renovation is a popular project among many homeowners. After all, who doesn’t love the idea of making their home look more beautiful and comfortable? However, before you start planning your dream home renovation, you should know a few things that could make the entire process a lot smoother (and less stressful). Here are eight things you wish you knew before remodeling your home.
Put everything in writing
This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised at how many people try to avoid putting the important stuff in writing. That includes your detailed plans, budget, timeline, and expectations. You also have to put your agreements in writing, especially with regard to the estimate and scope of work. And while the work is ongoing, you should keep a detailed record of your expenses, any issues or problems that arise, along with the steps taken to resolve them. All these will ensure that both you and your contractor are on the same page and that you’re protected in case anything goes wrong during the project. By putting everything in writing, you can avoid potential misunderstandings and disagreements down the road.
Get multiple estimates before choosing a contractor
Remodeling is a big investment, so it’s important to do your research and get recommendations from friends, family members, and other trusted sources. Once you have a shortlist of home contractors in mind, be sure to get at least three written estimates before making your final decision. Make sure that each estimate is based on the same set of plans and specifications, and take the time to review them in detail. Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions and get clarification on anything that’s not clear.
Prepare for unexpected costs
Even if you have agreed with a contractor on an estimate for your home renovation, you should still be ready to shell out more money if unexpected costs come up. It’s only an estimate after all, and there’s always a possibility that the actual costs could be more than what was initially quoted. So it’s important to have a contingency fund that you can tap into in case of emergencies. On average, experts recommend setting aside at least 10% to 20% of your total budget for unanticipated expenses.
Expect the unexpected
No matter how well you plan, there’s always a chance that something will go wrong during your renovation. Whether it’s a contractor not showing up on time or materials being delayed, things can and do go wrong. The key is to be prepared for the unexpected and have a contingency plan in place. That way, you can avoid potential stress and headaches down the road.
You need to see and feel the materials for yourself
Home renovation is a big investment, so it’s important to be sure that you’re using materials that you’re happy with. That means seeing and feeling the materials in person before making any decisions. For instance, if you’re choosing between two types of flooring, it’s a good idea to know what they look and feel like before making a decision. You might also want to visit a showroom or consult with experts to get their input on which materials would be the best fit for your home renovation project.
You have to get permits
If you think you can do anything to your property without getting the necessary permits, think again. Depending on the scope and nature of your remodeling or renovation project, you may need to get approval from your local government first. Otherwise, you could be fined or even forced to undo all the work that’s been done. So before you start any major renovations, be sure to check with your local building department to find out which permits are required.
Most design ideas online are from luxurious homes
If you’re looking for inspiration for your home renovation, it’s easy to get carried away by the endless stream of beautiful photos online. However, it’s important to keep in mind that most of these images are from homes that are way out of the average person’s budget. So don’t get too discouraged if you can’t seem to find anything that matches your budget. Just focus on finding something that’s within your financial means, and work from there.
You won’t be able to use your home or parts of it
If you’re planning to renovate your entire home, you may need to find a place to stay during the construction process. That’s because it’s going to be impossible to live in your home while it’s being gutted and renovated. If you have a relative or friend you can stay with, that can be a good option. Otherwise, your next option is to book a hotel or look for other temporary housing options in your area. You should factor this expense into your budget.
It’s possible to stay in one area while another is being renovated but it will be challenging and disruptive to your daily routine. You won’t be comfortable and may struggle with the lack of privacy. So be prepared to find alternate accommodations for a few weeks or months while the work is being done.
If you’re remodeling your kitchen, be prepared to make your meals somewhere else or eat out for a while. Because of the dust and debris that comes with any construction project, it’s not advisable to cook in your kitchen while the work is ongoing. So unless you have another place to prepare meals, you should plan on eating out or ordering in until the renovations are complete. A bathroom renovation will also take some time. That means you’ll have to plan accordingly and either shower or use the bathroom elsewhere in your home.
While remodeling your home can be a fun and exciting project, it’s important to be prepared for the challenges that come with it. Those who weren’t ready are surely wishing they knew some of the things listed here before they started renovating their homes. You can avoid potentially stressful situations and make the entire process a lot smoother if you do your due diligence and learn as much as you can about home renovation.