Having any house renovations can be upsetting. We are not just talking about the emotional upset, but the house hold being totally disrupted. How can you get ready for a house renovation and minimize the stress?
This will largely depend on the type of renovation or project you are undertaking.
We are all watching the ‘pennies’ or ‘cents’ nowadays, this has been made worse by the ongoing economic climate. We may have been tempted to move house not too long ago, in order to upgrade to a larger property, or to gain more back yard space.
We now consider carefully whether a house renovation or refurbishment is a better option. Obviously, you need to research the housing market. Start by searching online the area in which you live, look at the market value of similar properties to your own. Zillow is a great website to browse.
Take into consideration the cost of the renovations you are planning. Be careful that you do not over extend yourself in terms of out-pricing your home.
In a thriving housing market (hopefully not too far away), you will ‘reap the rewards’ of your renovation in financial terms, should you want to sell in the future.
From a buyers’ perspective, what is a buyer looking for in a property? The two main rooms that buyers want to see updated are the most expensive to renovate, these are the kitchen and bathrooms. Adding an outside entertainment area is also a selling feature.
Living in your home while a renovation is taking place can be a little stressful, so how can you get ready for your house renovation and make the process as painless as possible?
Research is essential, unless you are a specialist in home renovating, I would seriously consider hiring professionals. Word of mouth is probably the best way to choose who should manage the project. You could search sites such as ANGIES LIST which has a great reputation. Ask for at least 2 quotes from different firms.
Also ask to see examples of their work. Personally I would prefer to see examples of work completed, even meet a couple of satisfied customers, than rely on website testimonials. Take into consideration that even though you have employed a firm of specialists to do the work, they may sub-contract out to other specialists where required.
Ask who is going to undertake the plumbing or the electrics,
find out a little more about the people whom you are sharing your home with.
Take your time in choosing materials, don’t be rushed into making rash decisions as this could cost you more in the long run. Think carefully about the room you are renovating; What is its primary function, who uses the room and how often? What look do you want to achieve? and of course how much are you prepared to spend? Is there a little more in the budget in case of the unexpected happening?
Keep a diary of events, take before and after photographs. Make sure you have contact numbers for your contractor or customer care center. Ask questions.
Keep reviewing the progress made. If you are not happy with something, address the issues before the project moves any further.
I also think it is important to be on-site as the project starts to unfold. Know
who is coming, when, at what time, how long is the project going to take. Ask for an estimated date of completion.
Do not pay the full amount of money before the project is completed and you
are delighted with the results. A professional contractor should have the
finances to complete the renovation without asking for project money. However, a small deposit is acceptable to go towards materials.
From a practical point of view, we can’t all take off on holiday and come back to a fabulous designer room complete with accessories and flowers. So make sure
if you are’ living in’ the project, that you can manage without this room
functioning completely for a while. Professional contractors know how
disruptive renovations can be and they will not leave you without running water for example.
Finally, have some ‘bubbly’ ready in the refrigerator to celebrate once the renovations are complete.