Planning a home renovation project?
Perhaps you’re considering having your bathroom renovated to be more stylish and more comfortable. Or maybe you’re thinking of nearly doubling your home’s living space by having your basement remodeled.
No matter the type of renovation project you might be considering, it’s an exciting time. After all, your house is about to become a much different, and a much better place to live! Along with the excitement, though, comes a certain degree of stress. That’s because your home life will be disrupted for a while, at least to a degree.
But for many homeowners, the most stressful aspect of a home renovation project is simply getting it underway. And that’s particularly true for homeowners that have never been through a renovation project before.
So here’s a little checklist to guide you in getting your project going. Nothing complicated or overly demanding; just sort of a road map to help you navigate the process of launching your renovation.
Decide What You Want. This item may sound simplistic, but in fact it’s one of the most difficult steps of the entire process – at least for many people. You may be the rare person who knows already exactly what you want. If so, you’ll quickly be ready to move on to the next item in the checklist.
But if you’re less certain about what you want from your home renovation, this step may take some time. That’s OK. Take as long as necessary to be sure that you know what you want before proceeding. Because a renovation project that’s based on uncertain or nebulous goals is built upon a shaky foundation. And that invites both dissatisfaction and regret when the project is completed.
Determine Your Budget. Now that you know what you want, the next step is to decide how much of what you want is affordable. Hopefully all of it will be affordable. But if not, then you’ll need to rework the previous step to attain a compromised goal that your budget will accommodate.
You’ll likely need to talk with a contractor to get a feel for project costs. Most reputable professionals will be happy to meet with you and come up with at least a ballpark estimate.
Select Your Contractor. Don’t just pick a contractor out of the Yellow Pages at random. Your choice of contractor can make or break your project. Each contractor you’re considering should be carefully vetted. Particularly, be sure to ask the contractor for references from past customers. If the contractor is unwilling to provide same, you’d be wise to cross that contractor off your list of candidates.
Choose a Time. With the above steps completed, you’ll have a solid plan in place for your renovation. You’ll know what you plan to do, and what it will cost. The next step is to determine when you want to get underway with your project.
Keep in mind that the project is likely to be somewhat disruptive to your family’s life. So you’ll want to schedule the project so that it doesn’t coincide with other major life events such as graduations, weddings, etc. Ask the contractor how long the project is likely to take, and select 2 or 3 windows of time of that length that will mesh well with your schedule. Then sync-up your calendar with your contractor’s to choose a kick-off date.
Ready Your Household. With the project planned and scheduled, you’ll likely have a buffer of time before the project begins. Spend some of that time thinking about ways to make family life more comfortable while the renovation is in progress.
You might want to book a hotel room, for example, for times when there will be major disruptions to home life, such as power or water temporarily shut-off (ask your contractor’s help in planning for these). You may want to rent temporary storage for items that might be in harm’s way during the renovation process.
And you might also want to consider setting up a “safe room” – just a place to hide out during the hubbub of the renovation process. Select a room in your home that will be far from the action, and equip it with entertainment and comfort features that will make it a pleasant place to while away some time.
Still Need Some Help?
Hopefully the checklist above will help you in launching your home renovation project. But if you’re still not sure about the process, or have some questions you’d like answered, just contact us.
Because at TLC, we believe there are two aspects to every home renovation project:
- Doing the actual renovation work
- Guiding the homeowner comfortably through the process from concept to completion
So if you have any questions at all about the home renovation project that you’re considering, just ask us. We’ll be happy to provide information and guidance about any aspect of your renovation project. That, after all, is part of our job.