Every renovation is a chance to breathe new life into a space; help your remodel go as smoothly as possible by avoiding these 7 pitfalls.
1. Failing to Consider the Bigger Picture
When you start planning your renovation, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the minor details and lose sight of the overall goal.
Make a list of projects to accomplish in the short-term, medium-term, and long-term, as well as the estimated budget for each.
2. Taking On Too Much at Once
Being mindful of the bigger picture will also protect you from taking on too many projects at once. New homeowners who want to completely redesign their space often find one project turning into five.
Focus your energy on one area that you feel passionate about and let the rest wait. This will help you better manage your budget and your stress levels.
3. Not Checking with Neighborhood Guidelines
Unless you own a home in the middle of the woods or a large acreage, you probably have to abide by the rules and regulations of the neighborhood association. There’s nothing worse than being in the middle of a renovation and discovering it’s not allowed.
Get prior approval for everything, especially if you’re remodeling the outside of your home. Go through the proper steps for any work building, digging, tearing down, or revamping.
4. Going with the Cheapest Option
Getting multiple bids from multiple contractors is one of the most important stages in the home renovation process. While it may be tempting to always go with the lowest bid, ask yourself what corners are being cut to save you a little money.
Thoroughly research a contractor’s work and reviews before making a final decision. Look for common costs that appear on multiple bids and accept that those common numbers are probably the true costs.
5. Inexperienced DIY
Many homeowners get intimidated by the idea of hiring a contractor and spending money on something they saw on television once. However, tackling a project that you’re not equipped for only spells trouble.
Recognize your limits. If you wouldn’t call yourself particularly handy, or if you’ve never tackled a large-scale home project before, save yourself a headache and call in the professionals.
6. Unforeseen Roadblocks
The goal of every renovation is always for the job to go smoothly and finish ahead of time and under budget. However, Mother Nature and other factors aren’t always on the same page.
Pad your budget and your timeline in the event of unexpected costs or work delays. Give your contractor’s time schedule an additional 2 weeks just in case.
7. No More Money
Tools, paint, work, and unexpected additional costs can all drain your budget faster than you’d think.
Conventional wisdom recommends padding your budget by about 10-15% so that you don’t get halfway through your remodel and realize you’re out of cash.