Com­mon er­rors made on home ren­o­va­tion projects

Annapolis Valley Register - - EVENTS - BY METRO CREATIVE HOMES

Home im­prove­ment projects can turn a house into a home. Home­own­ers plan scores of ren­o­va­tions to trans­form liv­ing spa­ces into rooms that re­flect their per­sonal tastes and com­forts.

But home­own­ers go­ing it alone may find things do not al­ways go as planned. In fact, a Har­ris In­ter­ac­tive study found that 85 per cent of home­own­ers say re­mod­elling is a more stress­ful un­der­tak­ing than buy­ing a home.

But home­own­ers about to em­bark on home im­prove­ment projects can make the process go more smoothly by avoid­ing these com­mon pit­falls.

Fail­ing to un­der­stand scope of the pro­ject

Some home­own­ers don’t re­al­ize just how big a com­mit­ment they have made un­til they get their hands dirty. But un­der­stand­ing the scope of the pro­ject, in­clud­ing how much de­mo­li­tion and re­con­struc­tion is in­volved, and how much time a pro­ject will take can help home­own­ers avoid some of the stress that comes with ren­o­va­tion projects.

For ex­am­ple, a bath­room ren­o­va­tion may re­quire the re­moval of dry­wall, re­in­force­ment of floor­ing to ac­com­mo­date a new bath­tub or shower en­clo­sure and the in­stal­la­tion of new plumb­ing and wiring be­hind walls. So such a ren­o­va­tion is far more de­tailed the than sim­ply re­plac­ing faucets. Not es­tab­lish­ing a bud­get Home­own­ers must de­velop a pro­ject bud­get to en­sure their projects do not drain their fi­nances. If your bud­get is so in­flex­i­ble that you can’t af­ford the ma­te­ri­als you pre­fer, you may want to post­pone the pro­ject and save more money so you can even­tu­ally af­ford to do it right.

With­out a bud­get in place, it is easy to over­spend, and that can put you in fi­nan­cial peril down the line. Wor­ry­ing about com­ing up with money to pay for ma­te­ri­als and labour also can induce stress. Avoid the anx­i­ety by set­ting a firm bud­get.

Mak­ing trendy im­prove­ments

Home­own­ers who plan to stay in their homes for the long run have more free rein when it or per­sonal comes to ren­o­vat­ing their homes. Such home­own­ers can cre­ate a bil­liards room or paint a room hot pink if they so pre­fer.

How­ever, if the goal is to make im­prove­ments in or­der to sell a prop­erty, overly per­sonal touches may make a prop­erty less ap­peal­ing to prospec­tive buyers. Trends come and go, and im­prove­ments can be ex­pen­sive.

If your ul­ti­mate goal is to sell your home, opt for ren­o­va­tions that will look beau­ti­ful through the ages and avoid bold choices that may only ap­peal to a select few buyers.

For­get­ting to prop­erly vet all work­ers

It is im­por­tant to vet your con­trac­tor, but don’t for­get to vet po­ten­tial sub­con­trac­tors as well. Fail­ing to do so can prove a costly mis­take. Con­trac­tors of­ten look to sub­con­trac­tors to per­form cer­tain parts of a job, and it is the re­spon­si­bil­ity of home­own­ers to vet these work­ers.

Ex­pect­ing ev­ery­thing to go as planned

Op­ti­mism is great, but you also should be a re­al­ist. Know­ing what po­ten­tially could go wrong puts you in a bet­ter po­si­tion to han­dle any prob­lems should they arise. The pro­ject might go off with­out a hitch, but plan for a few hic­cups along the way.

Over­es­ti­mat­ing DIY abil­i­ties Overzeal­ous home­own­ers may see a ren­o­va­tion pro­ject in a mag­a­zine or on tele­vi­sion and im­me­di­ately think they can do the work them­selves. Un­less you have the tools and the skills nec­es­sary to do the work, tack­ling too much can be prob­lem­atic. In the long run, leav­ing the work to a pro­fes­sional may save you money.

Home im­prove­ments can be stress­ful, but home­own­ers can lessen that stress by avoid­ing com­mon ren­o­va­tion mis­takes.

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Overzeal­ous home­own­ers may see a ren­o­va­tion pro­ject in a mag­a­zine or on tele­vi­sion and im­me­di­ately think they can do the work them­selves. Un­less you have the tools and the skills nec­es­sary to do the work, tack­ling too much can be prob­lem­atic.

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