Home remodeling is a daunting task: physically, mentally and financially. There are millions of things to consider, to prepare and to be prepared for, and if something can go wrong – it will go wrong. So, what should you do? Give up? Of course not. Roll up your sleeves, grab a paper and a pen and write down everything you can do in order to make this renovation a smooth sailing instead of a wreck. Don’t forget to get your priorities in order so that they fit into your budget. Here is a short list of things you should consider including in your renovation plans.

Set up a budget

Starting a renovation project with realistic budget will considerably minimize the stress you are bound to experience. When writing down your costs, first determine the fixed expenses you can’t avoid, then add the most expensive things you have to renovate and subtract those costs from your available funds. Of course, plan for unplanned expenses and put some money on the side for them.

Establish a timeline

Here is a basic renovation timeline that should help you keep everything in check:

  • 12 months earlier: conceive your project (create a mood board)

  • 6 – 12 months earlier: visit showrooms

  • 6 months earlier: establish a budget

  • 5 months earlier: make appointments with contractors

  • 4 months earlier: get quotes from traders

  • 3 months earlier: set a start and finish date

  • 2 months earlier: get all the necessary materials

  • 1 month earlier: choose finishes

  • 1 month before the finish date: hire painters

  • 1 – 2 week before the finish date: book cleaners and waste removal..

Make a priority list

When making a priority list there are two questions you need to ask yourself: 1) How desperately do I need for this room to be remodeled; 2) Which projects bring the biggest return of investment (ROI). As for the first question, it is clear that you should fix what’s broken. And for the second, if you intend to sell the house one day bathroom, kitchen and attic addition can pay off.

Find the right contractor

The choice of contractor can make or break your renovation, so make sure you read several online reviews and ask for word-of-mouth recommendations before you hire someone. Check the contractor’s portfolio for similar projects, as well.

Protect your interests in the contract

A good contractor will ensure that you pay only for the work that is done and that the contractors honor the established timeline. It is very important to pay attention to contract terms and if you don’t like them, try to negotiate better ones.

Organize waste removal

Remodeling projects, regardless of their scope, produce a lot of trash, and unless you want to be left with all that mess to take care on your own, you should hire a construction waste removal company to rid you of the reno consequences.

Oversee the reno

Most contractors will tell you that it is enough to check up on them once a week or even less. However, unless you can truly put your faith in their words, you should visit the site every day or at least three or four times a week. This way you will avoid unpleasant surprises, react to mistakes that can happen along the way and make sure everything is going just the way you wanted it.

Renovate for the future

Home remodeling isn’t something you do every year, so, obviously it shouldn’t comply with seasonal trends. A rule of thumb for renovation is to stick to the classic timeless style. Greenery may be Pantone’s color of the year, but imagine how those currently trendy Greenery cabinets in your kitchen will look two years from now? That’s right – they’ll be totally out of vogue. If you want to change something, you can do it later, through less expensive and less permanent projects like painting, buying minor furniture pieces, artwork, and accessories.

Bottom line: renovations are complicated, time and nerve consuming and expensive. The only thing you can do is to prepare well for different outcomes and hope for the best.  

Published by Emma Lawson