One of the best things about being a homeowner is the freedom to customize your space however you see fit. If you don’t like the outdated kitchen design, you can tear out the whole thing and modernize it. If you don’t like a wall, remove it to open up the floor.
The point is when you buy a house, you can do anything you want to make it match your style and meet your design standards. However, before you dive headfirst into your next home renovation project, there are a few things you need to consider, or put in place to make sure you’re doing things right.
A little prep work can save you time and money, as well as prevent injuries and other disasters. We want to help set you up for success. Keep reading for our pre-renovation to-do list.
1. Your Renovation Budget
Let’s start with your home renovation budget. How much money have you set aside for this project? Are you sure it’s enough?
When it comes to contracting or construction work, it’s always a good idea to have more in your budget than you think you’ll need. You never know when something unexpected is going to come up. Whether you’re taking out a loan or using money from savings, make sure you account for any snafus you might come across during your project.
2. DIY or Professional Hire?
A big part of planning a home renovation project (and budget) is determining whether or not you need to hire a professional contractor. There are several factors that can determine your need for a professional contractor, such as:
- Your skills and knowledge
- City coding laws
- Safety concerns
- Craftsmanship standards
- Tools and equipment
- And more
You can save a tremendous amount of money by doing as much of the work as you can on your own. However, if DIY work will result in poorly executed work, unsafe conditions, or re-dos, it may be worth it to pay for a professional right off the bat.
3. City Coding Knowlege
Before starting a home renovation project, you must familiarize yourself with the city coding laws. Some projects require permits. For example, if you were to renovate a room and do your own electrical work, it could result in fines or major issues if you ever attempt to sell the home.
There are also neighborhood restrictions to consider, which can inhibit:
- Buiding garages
- Putting up fences
- Installing swimming pools
Violating city coding laws can result in heavy fines and penalties. In some cases, you may be forced to undo the project. The city could make you tear down a shed, fence, shop, etc.
4. The Right Tools and Equipment for the Job
Doing renovation work and remodeling your own home can be an incredibly rewarding experience. However, if you don’t have the right tools for the job, the project can quickly become frustrating, if not altogether impossible.
Before jumping into a project, do some research to find out what tools are required. For expensive tools and equipment, consider renting them, rather than buying them. If the job calls for tools and equipment that you don’t know how to use, it may be best to hire a contractor, at least for that part of the project.
5. Safety Precautions
One of the biggest concerns with any construction or contracting project is safety. For this reason alone, many homeowners choose to hire professional contractors who have trained to complete certain jobs as safely as possible. This includes roofing work, electrical work, projects that require heavy lifting, projects that call for power tools or heavy equipment, and more.
While you absolutely should learn new skills and improve your maintenance and renovation knowledge, it may be best to observe a professional first. Picking up a new power tool for the first time without proper instruction can lead to poor craftsmanship, wasted materials, and potential injuries.
This may also mean investing in the appropriate personal protective equipment. For simple renovation projects, this typically means safety glasses, work gloves, and hearing protection (for loud power tools). However, it may also be beneficial to invest in a hard hat and knee pads.
Setting yourself up for success is key to managing a smooth home renovation project. To do this, you need to think ahead and plan for all of the minor details and logistics. For example, if you or contractors are going to be coming in and out of the house, set down plastic sheeting to protect your floors from heavy workboots, mud, dirt, and other debris.
If you’re doing most of the work yourself, you need to think about how you’re going to buy and transport the materials you need. If you don’t have a truck, you may need to borrow one from a friend. Many home improvement stores also offer shipping options.
Additonally, you need to plan ahead for cleaning up after yourself. Big renovation projects that include tearing out old rooms or appliances create a lot of waste. It’s a good idea to look into different dumpster rental options.
7. A Detailed Plan
Finally, make sure you have a detailed blueprint or plan for your home renovation project. This needs to be complete with drawings, measurements, and the supplies needed.
Your design plan will help you compile a list of materials, supplies, and equipment you need to complete the project. Otherwise, you’ll end up making multiple trips to the home improvement store.
Finally, your plan should include a projected timeline or goal date in which to finish. Big projects can become tedious and some homeowners end up procrastinating.
A lot of people are guilty of finishing 90% of a project and then leaving it. For example, they’ll repaint an entire room but never get around to repainting the trim. To avoid this, give yourself a strict deadline and hold yourself accountable to it.
Are You Ready to Start Your Home Renovation Project?
If you’re itching to get started on your next home improvement project, don’t let us hold you back. However, we highly recommend taking the seven factors listed above into account before diving in. Otherwise, good luck with your project, we hope it turns out great.
And if you’re looking for more home improvement, budgeting, or DIY advice, be sure to take a look at come of our other articles before you go. We offer a wide selection of content with everything from homeownership to business marketing.