A home remodeling project can be very exciting. In fact, it’s so easy to get carried away with all the excitement and just skip to the part where you choose fittings, fixtures, and colors. But for any home renovation to unfold smoothly, there are many things to consider first before starting. Thus, many designers will agree that the best way to ensure the successful renovation of your home is to plan the whole process thoroughly. Here are some tips to consider for home remodeling in Minneapolis:
Reflect on Your Goal for Remodeling
To decide on the extent of your renovation, you first need to reflect on your goals for remodeling your home. You could be planning a renovation because you want to increase your home’s resale value, or you could be remodeling for your upcoming retirement. Consider your neighborhood’s condition before starting and check which renovations have attractive returns on investment. If you’re preparing a retirement home, this will also help you decide how far you’ll go with your project.
Set a Budget
Creating a budget and sticking to it is also an important part of remodeling planning. In setting a budget, don’t forget to include a contingency fund for unplanned and incidental costs such as eating out due to a kitchen renovation, or maybe staying in a hotel for a couple of nights.
It can be easy to splurge on your remodeling project, but a few affordable upgrades can still make your home look grander. Research well on your options and plan your finances before deciding to start on the renovation.
Here are some tips to help you stick to your budget or reduce renovation costs.
- Perform the demolition yourself. If part of your home renovation calls for pulling tiles up, removing cabinets, or any job that doesn’t require expertise, think about doing the job yourself. This is one way to cut on labor costs and save some money.
- Do the finishes and fixtures shopping. A contractor may charge you an hourly fee to perform the shopping for you and may even add a markup. Inform the contractor of your plan so he knows that you’re doing this step yourself.
- Do the project managing yourself. If your project calls for more subcontractors, interview and choose them yourself instead of letting the general contractor do it.
- Paint it yourself. If part of the remodel includes painting the walls, for instance, do the painting yourself and save money for your renovation budget.
Check the Calendar
If you’re expecting a newly improved home for a specific holiday or event, ensure that you check your starting and end date. It would also be helpful to include up to a month of additional time at the end of the expected date in case of delays.
Do Your Homework
Take time to talk to your friends or family about any home remodeling they have experienced. You can get some ideas on what challenges they encountered in the project and how they solved them. Gathering information from homeowners who have had the same experience can be very helpful in the planning stage, and this information can sometimes change your end goal.
Accept Your Limitations
Some DIY renovation projects can help you save money, involve your family, and provide a great sense of accomplishment. However, DIYs can be dangerous if you have no idea what you’re doing. It is crucial to know what projects you can safely do, and which should be done by professionals.
Request Contractors for References
A good home remodeling Minneapolis contractor shouldn’t have any problem giving references as well as liability insurance copies before starting on any job. You shouldn’t just depend on client testimonials. Look for their actual customers, who can provide their personal account on their experience with the contractor. They can also answer your questions, if your have any. Ask the contractor to show before and after images of their work. Knowing what questions to ask a contractor during the interview is also important.
Pack Your Things Up
To simplify any home renovation project, declutter, pack up, and transfer things in the renovation area. If you’ve decided on a whole-house remodel, you may consider an onsite storage pod or renting an offsite locker, where you can cleanly and safely place your things during the renovation. Here are some tips to help you in packing for your renovation:
- Think about what you can’t live without. If you don’t use something regularly, it can be packed away for the renovation period. Consider the things you use daily and place them in an accessible area.
- Pack things that can be broken. This means delicate glassware, family heirlooms, and valuable breakables, can be easily destroyed in the chaos of remodel work and should be packed for safety.
- Label everything. To reduce your stress, label the packed boxes by room, family member, function, or whatever you need for easier unpacking later.
- Avoid overpacking. This means not stuffing the boxes such that no one can carry them around. Overstuffing can also result to breakage or have the bottom fall out. Keep the boxes to a maximum of 50 pounds so they’re easier to carry and manage.
- Take apart when needed. Some furniture pieces should be simpler to store when they’re disassembled. If they’re modular, take the pieces apart to safely keep them while also maximizing space.
- Consider box quality. Using flimsy boxes may usually cause some of the items to be damaged. Try plastic totes or double-ply cardboard boxes to provide protection in storing your items for a renovation project.
Think About Your Routine
If you’ve hired a contractor for your home remodel, ensure that you inform them about your family’s daily routine. You must work out a start and end time that won’t disrupt your family’s schedule. After all, you don’t want to have people around you while you’re still in your nightgown.
Launch Mission Control
It can be frustrating when you can’t find the tool you need in the middle of a job. Before starting the renovation, establish one area of the house to serve as mission control, where you can keep all your materials, tools, checklists, and manuals.
Protect the Kids
If you’re planning to DIY some parts of the work and getting the kids involved, you should have a child protection plan in place. And even if you’ve hired a contractor for the job, ensure that you have electrical safety covers and safety gates. Moreover, keep sharp tools away from curious children, especially during off-hours where there isn’t enough supervision in the renovation area. Here are some tips to keep the kids safe during a renovation:
- Change your home habits. Have alternative areas to fulfill the family’s needs during the renovation. Setup a temporary kitchen and a specific bathroom to use for the duration. Bathrooms under construction should be locked to keep kids from getting inside.
- Manage the tools around the house. Inform contractors to unplug power tools or take the batteries out of cordless tools and keep them out of kids’ reach.
- Keep kids well supervised during work. Always ensure that the kids stay away from the areas under construction as they can easily slip out into the area without being noticed.
- Keep waste contained. Ensure that the trash pile is covered to avoid kids from stepping on a nail or other sharp objects. Keep chemical containers away from children’s reach even if these are empty.
Consider Your Pets
The temporary pandemonium inside your home during renovation can also stress out your pets. During a home remodel, remember to keep your pets safe and cared for. This could mean asking a friend or family to pet-sit while work is being done at home. This is crucial especially when your doors will frequently be open for getting materials and tools in and out.
Plan for Outages
If your home doesn’t have plumbing shut-off valves in the part of the house you’re working on, you don’t have a choice but to shut the water off at the main valve, leaving your family with no access to running water. To go about this problem, place water containers in the refrigerator for drinking, have some water on the counter for cooking, and keep buckets of water for flushing the toilet. As an alternative, you can also fill your bathtub with water and have a bucket nearby for carrying water into the toilet bowl.
Create a Master List
The best way to succeed in your home remodeling project, and to aid in the budgeting process, create a master checklist of items that you need. This should include all the materials for the project as well as permits. It would be better to sort the list of items you have from the items that you need to buy. When it comes to tools, creating a list will also help in deciding which tools you can rent to help you keep within your budget compared to purchasing a new one.
You don’t need to be an engineer to create drawings for your renovation. You may also be required to show a drawing to get a permit for your home remodel. Ensure that you include information such as heights and widths of windows and doors, square footage, and present locations for services such as gas, electrical or water.
Many people think that getting a building permit is an additional headache that will just slow down the remodel process. However, permits are an important part of the process because the consequences of not getting one can be drastic. A building permit is required to make sure that the renovation meets fire safety and structural standards. Code inspectors can also force you to rip off any work that doesn’t meet the standards, which can be an expensive problem to deal with when planning to sell your home in the future. It’s always good to plan and ensure that you obtain the necessary working permits.
Establish a Work-Free Zone
Before starting any remodel work at home, it’s always a good idea to have a work-free area for your family to gather and relax. Ensure that you place everything you need, including a microwave or kettle, so you can have just one handy space to gather, relax, or eat.
Schedule a Cleanup Time
After a tiring day of working on a remodel project, it can be easy to just leave the mess for the following day. Unfortunately, this can lead to lost tools and consequently cause delays. Ensure that you include sufficient time in your schedule to clean up at the end of the day.
Even when just improving the aesthetics of your home, there is also a chance to improve its money-saving capability or functions. If you must rip out the whole room, for example, consider adding insulation to the walls, add additional electrical or light fixtures, or improve your electrical panel. The idea is to reflect on how you’ll use the room, think ahead, and make the most of cosmetic renovations to improve your home’s structure.
Schedule the Help
For an upcoming renovation, it might be helpful to solicit plenty of help from handy friends and family. Provide enough time to organize their schedule to help. Don’t forget to give enough reminders while the project approaches. If you’re hiring a contractor, ensure that you provide ample notice to follow your desired timeline. Plan on having a message center to have everyone informed as things or schedules change to make it simpler for everyone.
Consider the Weather
Even if you’ve scheduled a remodel on summer or spring, don’t rely on having good weather in the days ahead. Ensure that you check the short and long-term forecasts before starting the job. Schedule work that need outside access such as wood cutting or spray painting on days with the best weather outlook. Also consider heat and cold on those days when you may need to disable power from your air conditioner or furnace for ideal working conditions. Finally, be alert about any unexpected weather changes.
The best way to ensure the success of a home remodel is to reflect on your goals and plan each step carefully. Expect to encounter problems along the way, which can sometimes be costly and frustrating. But it’s also important to think reasonably and not perceive being behind schedule as a total disaster. Instead, think about how you can make things better instead of blaming people. Always keep your goal in mind and remember that the home remodel won’t take forever. In time, you’ll see the improvements that the project will bring to your home.