Making Your Home Improvement Journey A Smooth One
What do you know about home improvement? On average, Americans will spend $33,000 on home remodeling each year, according to a report by CNBC. With such large figures at hand, it’s important to get the work done right the first time. Doing so will reduce future repair costs, lessen the amount of stress that comes with renovating the home, and help to guarantee that your changes are effective and aesthetically pleasing. If you’re looking to flip the home, a well-planned renovation is an effective way to ensure a good return.
Sizing up the parts and work
A long planning stage is the most important part of any home remodeling process. A good example of this is in the kitchen. Before you put any money out, it’s important to precisely and fully measures your kitchen, look at where key fittings are, and whether there are any features that can’t be removed.
As well as making the job more precise, it will also help you to figure out what you can do on your own, saving cash. For instance, replacing a sink faucet can be a routine job, whereas something as simple as grouting tiles can have a much bigger impact than you first think. Use planning software for ease, and don’t be afraid to call in the professionals. This is also an opportunity to save money before you’ve even put out the feelers for contractors; as the New York Times note, substitutions can make big savings in the ‘big jobs’ around the home.
Get your permits in order
Many home improvements need permits. Failing to get the right permit can lead to a fine or you have to tear down the work you’ve done. If you’re going to do the work yourself then you need to apply for the permit yourself. Most of the time, hired contractors will apply for the necessary permit if you’re paying someone to do the job for you. The permits you need vary from state to state and even between cities, so make sure you swot up on what the law is where you live.
Similarly, fees vary too. You can expect an inspector to come and assess your work to ensure that it complies with building codes. As a general rule, permits are needed for home improvements where you expand the size of your property, such as an extension. You’re also likely to need a permit if you want to create new windows or doors, put up a new roof, or put in new electrical points.
Are you insured?
One of the biggest benefits of improving your home is that it often increases the value of your property. Love Property states that a bathroom and kitchen renovation can add 10% to the value of your home. However, you need to ensure that your policy will cover the additional value.
The important things to look at are ‘the cost to rebuild your home’ and ‘the cost to replace personal belongings. You don’t just need to look at your insurance policy after renovations are complete, though. As more and more items, tools, and materials are added to your home during your project, your insurance coverage will need to go up.
It’s also important to check that you’re covered if something goes wrong during renovations, such as a foundation falling down or a burst pipe damaging your home. Some insurers specify that you must notify them of building work a set amount of days before it starts, so make sure you check through your policy before work begins.
Scouting around for prices and maintaining control
With the plans in place, you will move into a procurement stage where you look for the actual parts to fit your new project together. The key here is to shop around. Depending on the time of year, you may be able to get work done cheaper. Spring and summer are the most popular times of year for home renovations. High demand for contractors means it’s more difficult to hire someone, so you may have to settle for a contractor with higher rates than you can realistically afford.
It’s best to do home improvements in the autumn or winter, if you can as there’s more competition. You may also find materials that are discounted due to sales or post-sale surpluses. This is a crucial step in your journey to a renovated home – according to US News, 46% of people overspent on their renovation budget. Be aware of costs, and try to factor in risk – for instance, where different materials are required, if work runs over, or if labor costs are inflated due to market demand.
Where possible, you should move out of your home when renovations begin. This makes life easier for both yourself and any contractors you hire. For example, one kitchen and bathroom supplier estimates that the average kitchen remodel takes between 2 and 6 months to complete.
This is a long time to go without access to a fully working kitchen. If you continue to live in your home during this time, you’ll have to use your bathroom sink to wash the dishes. You’ll also need to buy small appliances and white goods so you can store and prepare food elsewhere in your home while your kitchen is out of action.
Applying finishing touches
When the hard work of your home renovation is completed, there will be a few last areas to take care of before you can call it a day. Real Homes note a few of these can have larger implications; for instance, a tiling section stopped at the edge of kitchen work units may save costs and effort, but will be time-consuming to rectify if you decide to remodel in the future.
Be rigorous, and put effort into every last part of the home here. If there’s missing filler in the bathroom, have it replaced properly; ensure tiles are properly fixed; if carpet and upholstery have issues, raise them now, rather than later.
With the house renovated, all that’s left to do is clean up. With that, you’ll have a newly renovated and beautiful home, either for you to live in or sell onwards. The process of renovation isn’t complicated, and its success pretty much comes down to two major factors – planning, and precise execution.
Thank you for reading!