Before starting a remodeling project, the first question you should ask yourself is what don’t you like about your current space?
You might wonder if your home is the right place to put that investment and how you will pay for the changes.
Is it the lack of light, the low ceilings, the lack of storage space, or the lack of an exit to the outdoors?
You should know the general measurements of the space.
If that room is an exterior space, what does the space in the immediate outdoors look like?
You may also need to evaluate the need for the surrounding rooms.
If they would better serve as expansion space for the remodeled room, add their measurements to the project.
Renovating For Resale
Are you renovating to increase the resale value of your home?
Consider where your home is located.
Will your house in its current neighborhood demand a better price after the renovation?
Design Your New Space
Now you’re ready to talk to a designer and contractor.
You may choose to do the designing yourself if you feel competent as a layperson or are a professional.
Upon deciding what changes you will make, you and the designer can devise a budget within your financial means.
The next step is to decide what contractors are needed to complete each project.
Use tried and true professionals to do your work.
Get referrals from happy customers who have homes you like.
If you admire your neighbors’ new custom Dutch doors, ask for their contractor’s name.
Good Practices For Hiring a General Contractor
Use References from Neighbors, Friends, and Family
Interview Contractors Over the Phone
Meet Your Contractor in Person
Ask to See Relevant Photos of Their Work
Get Bids on the Project
Don’t Allow a Low Bid to be Your Only Guide
Establish a Payment Schedule
Put Everything in Writing
Create a Schedule
Set a schedule for accomplishing each major task and the myriad number of minor steps that are part of the whole.
What is your end goal?
Devise reasonable steps to get to that goal and try to adhere to that schedule until you’re sitting comfortably in your newly renovated space.
Manage Paperwork, Permits, and Bills
Have a plan for managing paperwork and paying contractor bills.
Keep in mind the permits that are needed to get remodeling projects completed in your neighborhood.
These permits will have a fee associated with obtaining them.
You may have to supply small items like painter’s tape, paintbrushes, and rollers, drop cloths, etc.
Remember Life Is Imperfect
Don’t forget the potential for problems in everyday life that could limit the work that can get done.
Remove the excess furniture and household items by boxing up and moving as much as possible.
Have a plan to care for your kids and pets as the remodeling will upset their routines.
If your home routinely suffers power outages, have a plan to provide alternate power sources so work doesn’t have to stop.
Have a Renovation-Free Area
Set up a renovation-free area that is completely free of all tools and residue from the renovation.
Seal it off with plastic and be sure that it offers access to flowing air, water, heat or air, and light.
It should also be exposed to little or no noise from the renovation.
Have a Cleanup Schedule
When you are renovating, things can get pretty messy over time.
Have a consistent cleanup schedule for the renovation area.
The cleanup should occur after each day of renovation work and should be incorporated into the scheduled time.
If it’s an eight hour day, clean up in the last 30 to 45 minutes of the day.
That would include discarding all packaging, sweeping, and replacing all the tools.
Keep Your Project or Projects on Schedule
If you have a 12-week project, check on deliveries at least once a week until they have arrived.
Each week, assess what has been accomplished, what stage the job is in, and what remains to be done.
In time, your renovation will be complete.
You can sit back and see what you have accomplished.
You will be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor.