How to Prepare for a Home Renovation

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How to Prepare for a Home Renovation

There are two terms that should never be used in the same sentence together: home renovation and spontaneous. Any home renovation, whether it’s limited to a portion of one room or encompasses your entire home, should always be preceded by careful forethought, preparation, and contingency planning. Here is a list of measures that you can take to make your next home renovation run smoothly, along with the potential risks of neglecting them.

Determine how long you’ll be in the space
If you’re planning a home renovation, but anticipate the possibility of selling in the next five years or so, you’ll want to consider the next potential home buyer when choosing finishes and colors. Neutral colors and timeless finishes will appeal to the widest audience. On the other hand, if you anticipate being in the space for an extended period of time, you can be more comfortable getting creative with your renovation choices.

Consider the long-term needs of your project
Some renovations start out as small cosmetic jobs and slowly morph into a full remodel. This can yield positive end results, however it will typically end with a higher total project cost, and take more time. Take a close look at the surrounding elements of your renovation space. For example, if you’re planning to put in a new kitchen countertop and sink, consider how this will affect the look of the backsplash and cabinets.

Keep the style of your home in mind when planning your renovation
When renovating the interior of a space, consider the architectural style of the exterior. For example, if your home is a Victorian you’ll want to avoid a remodel that is too contemporary. Maintain the integrity of the period or style details. This will pay off when its time to sell, either short term or long term. If you’re uncertain about the style or history of your house this is a good time to do some research to determine what style of renovation would best compliment the structure.

Map out the needs and wants of your project
Make a list of items in your renovation that you must have and a list of things that could be skipped if necessary. This way you’re covered if not everything fits into your budget. A priority may be a new master bath, however perhaps other projects can wait.

Consider the schedule
Plan out your renovation to leave as much time as necessary to finish the work prior to any important occasions. If you’re looking to put on a new porch for your annual summer party, you’ll want to plan ahead accordingly. In addition, you always want to consider the time required to obtain town permits for the work.

Establish budget and determine costs before committing
Once you’ve established your renovation project needs in some detail, you’re ready to discuss the project with a home renovation specialist. Meet with and interview a builder, and obtain a project estimate. When the meeting is complete, ask the builder to set a date for when you can meet again and ask them to return with an itemized estimate. A well respected renovation specialist can be a good source of referral to an architect.

Get a signed agreement
Make sure that you and your builder are on the same page and that all work to be carried out is outlined in your agreement.

Home renovation is like a marriage: since you’re proceeding with the idea that it will be permanent, you should carefully consider all of the ramifications before taking the leap. So take the time to make all of the essential preparations before you start on any home renovation project.