The thought of creating your dream home can be extremely exciting. However, there are certain things that you can overlook when it comes to home renovations. Here are some common mistakes to avoid when taking on a remodel to help you save time and money, as well as ensure you don’t gray prematurely in the process.
1. Rushing into it.
Don’t get caught up in the excitement of a renovation project and rush into it without developing a good plan. Be patient. Before starting anything, come up with a design with your contractor, a realistic timeline, and look into whether or not your project needs a permit. Coming up with a good plan is tedious and time-consuming but having a bad plan or no plan at all can delay your project, derail progress, and increase costs in the long run.
2. Taking matters into your own hands (DIYers)
I love a DIY project as much as the next person, but just know when to hand over a project to professionals. Realistically evaluate your own abilities before deciding to start a project without hiring a contractor. Sure a blog post or YouTube video may make it seem easy but just know that you may not end up with the result you were expecting or you may not be able to finish the project at all. Then...after investing your time and money into doing a project on your own, you may have to hire a contractor to repair your mistake anyway. So realize that hiring a contractor is a worthwhile investment. They have the expertise to plan the project, maneuver through challenges, and apply best practices to ensure superior results.
Tip: If you have made the decision to go about a project on your own, we offer home renovations consulting to help advise you on the project from start to finish. Read more about home renovations consulting here.
3. Choosing the first contractor you meet or a contractor with the lowest quote
A contractor can make or break a project. Don’t make the mistake of choosing the first contractor you meet. Take your time. Be sure to interview several contractors, communicating to them your expectations for the project and request an itemized estimate from each one. Moreover, the lowest quoted price might be tempting, but it can be misleading and unrealistic. A low quote can mean that the contractor is not accounting for certain costs or even worse, they might cut corners once the renovation starts.
4. Having an unrealistic budget
What I mean by “unrealistic” is creating a budget, which doesn’t allow for wiggle room. A good rule of thumb to follow is once you have decided what you want to spend, increase that number by 20% and that should be your budget. This 20% cushion will help prevent added stress when unforeseen events arise.
5. Choosing the cheaper option
It’s understandable that you are looking for ways to save money on a project, but don’t automatically choose the cheapest fixtures. Talk to your contractor about the tradeoffs between quality and price for your certain aspects of your project. You’ll probably be better off selecting a better quality product that fits within your budget. Investing a little more on quality means you won’t be spending money on repairs in the long run.
Tip: If you are in no rush at all, you may be able to find great deals on items that you do want throughout the year. You just need to keep your eyes peeled and you can save on material costs without compromising quality. However, make sure you have the right measurements before you buy it!
6. Changing your mind.
Try your best to stick to your initial plan once a renovation project has begun. Changing your mind throughout the project and doing last minute add-ons can get costly. However, a good contractor will let you know what will cost extra if you do so happen to change your mind. Ultimately, coming up with a refined plan in the beginning in order to help you not doubt yourself throughout the renovation.