Remodeling is a nightmare for most people, especially if you’re living in the home. Constant dust, contractors roaming through your house, unexpected surprises that cost time and money—it’s enough to drive anyone crazy! If you want to survive the job, there are a few questions to consider first.
Can you live in the home while remodeling?
Depending on your home, a remodeling job can be as simple as replacing the windows or as difficult as gutting the house. Obviously, if you are gutting the house, you may want to vacate before you begin.
You can, however, live in the home during a smaller job. For instance, if you’re working on a kitchen, stow unnecessary kitchen items elsewhere, so you can work in a less cluttered space. Remodeling can add a lot of its own clutter so take the unnecessary items out of the equation.
Do you know what you want before you start?
An important part of remodeling is your plan! A good floor plan is key to comfortable living post remodel, whereas a poorly thought-out plan will make you want to remodel again in a few years.
Make a plan by gathering inspiration. Look through real estate listings, Pinterest, friends’ homes, etc., and create a list of must-haves and wants. Define what you like and don’t like about each example, and ask friends what they like/dislike about their homes as well
If you can afford it, hiring a designer or space planner can take the stress out of the planning. Their experience could mean a more efficient, comfortable layout, saving you time and money in the future.
What’s your budget?
Remodeling can get expensive fast. If you’re handy with tools, you might do your own remodeling, which will make a smaller budget go further. On the other hand, if you’re a klutz when it comes to handyman jobs, hiring a contractor can make all the difference, though on a tight budget, this will limit what can be done.
Many remodelers take out a loan to cover remodeling costs, eliminating some limitations on the scope of work. However, it can be more difficult to enjoy your newly remodeled home if making loan payments is a financial burden.
What is your timeline?
You’ll have an easier time with a renovation if you know the time it takes. Work with your contractor and/or designer to develop a schedule. Seek guarantees from your contractor that, barring any unexpected surprises, the job will be done on time.
If you do your own remodeling, it’s usually done after work and on the weekends. This can take months and even years to finish the entire project, so be prepared. If you’re doing your own remodeling, divide the project into smaller jobs and work on one at a time. Don’t start another job until the current one is finished. This way, your whole house won’t be torn up at once.
Also, consider how you’ll handle the time it takes to do the work. A person who can’t stand clutter or dust during a remodel will find ways to get it done more quickly, while a more laid-back individual could handle the mess for longer. Factor this into your initial scheduling.
Will you have anyone you can rely on outside the home?
Whether you hire a contractor or do the work yourself, having someone outside the home to rely on can be a life saver. Friends and family can help provide meals, babysitting, use of their kitchen while yours is in shambles, and more.
If you’re doing the work yourself, they might also offer a lending hand. Seemingly minor jobs like painting, installing tile, and more can be time-consuming if you don’t have people to help.
Don’t turn down offers to help either. It’s tempting to say that you can do everything yourself, but be realistic about your talents and abilities. If you have the opportunity to decrease the time it takes to do your remodel, take it!
Remodeling can be very stressful, but the result can be wonderful. If you consider the time, money, and your handyman (or woman) abilities, you can make sure it’s done right the first time and have a home you love and enjoy for years to come.