8 Expectations To Have During Home Remodels & Renovations

Posted on May 9th, 2018 by Nastazsa Lin Cabrera

We often talk about the benefits of home renovations, however, we’d like to use this post to inform homeowners of the negatives that come with the entire process as well. Of course, in a picture perfect world we wouldn’t have to refer to these guidelines, however, home renovations aren’t always a walk in the park. Learning to come to terms with that is what comes with the territory. As famously re-quoted by Oscar Wilde, “To expect the unexpected shows a thoroughly modern intellect”. By knowing what to expect from your upcoming project, you’ll know how to react to each circumstance.

1). Greater expense

 No matter what, your project will always exceed the budget you had in mind. There are additional features you miss when you initially plan such as delivery rates for the materials you order which varies from business to business. There are other features unbeknownst to you that only your architect or contractor will point out once you get the ball rolling. Installation or product issues (to name a few) will arise that may require you to spend more than you’d planned. To give you an idea, some homeowners have spent 30%-40% more than what their budget had originally permitted. With that being said, it is extremely important to always leave room for a buffer.

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2). Lots and lots of noise

 If the renovation is taking place around you during your daily activities, expect to be aggravated by noise that induces headaches. Noise-canceling headphones are highly recommended. You can also prep an area of the household that won’t get as much impact. This room will be more of a sanctuary during these loud times.

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3). Dirt, dust, and more dirt

Because home remodeling requires countless materials, you’re going to see a ton of mess from those materials, especially dirt. So, just remember, this also comes with the territory and to remind your workers/installers to cover your floors and their feet as thoroughly as possible. They are responsible for cleaning their own messes, so any trails left behind should be taken care of by their party.

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4). Unexpected problems

 What would the world be without any obstacles to overcome? Not that the previously listed numbers weren’t issues in and of themselves, but we’re talking about mishaps. Hiccups, if you will. Imagine spending endless hours of research on the tile you had originally wanted for the entire first level of your home just to find out it had recently sold out. What if someone stumbles upon a plumbing issue during the installation of your new kitchen sink and countertop? What if someone breaks or chips materials during installation? Many people think or want to believe home renovations can go according to plan; the reality is sometimes they don’t. Something always pops up that you didn’t prepare for and you’ll have to adjust. If you prepare for that now you’ll be less disappointed when it happens. This is why leaving a buffer when it comes to your budget is absolutely vital.

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5). Non-stop questions

Be prepared to answer lots of questions as workers will be relying on you to make decisions about anything and everything.

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6). Change orders

This relates to #4 but sometimes YOU want something other than what you had originally planned/picked out. Or, there’s a problem with the material you purchased and you have to return it for something else. If you didn’t need as much of your budget for another area, change orders are used to put those funds elsewhere.

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7). Delays

More time and more money. In order to avoid delays in areas such as tile and stone for example, always make sure you order a week or two ahead of time. Some tile shops don’t have their material ready to purchase in-store, so check with customer service to see how long it would take to order and have the materials delivered. Particular stones and tiles can come from different parts of the country so allow for a week or two of transit time. Always coordinate with your contractors/installers and give them a time frame as to when to expect the materials. Never assume when the tiles will arrive and have your installers come in unless given a specific ETA. This is a commonly made mistake that leads to improper scheduling.

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8). Unfinished Tasks

Even though you had everything organized and planned to a T, there will be a couple items that go unfinished for reasons you can’t control. It’s all about coming to a resolution with the collective help of your contractor, architect, designer, or anyone else involved in these road bumps. Take a deep breath in and then proceed with a solution.

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Planning ahead of time usually causes less of a headache, which everyone on your project team can appreciate. Do as much research as possible on items/products you’d like to purchase months in advance and review them with your team. It’s much easier to navigate everyone and yourself when you have the area’s final look envisioned and you have the places, products, and prices sorted out to reference off of. Create spreadsheets and files to stay organized. Your team will let you know what works and where you have to make adjustments.

It’s also important to know issues that are out of your control will still occur despite preparation and that truism needs to be accepted in order to get through your project. It’s all about working with your team to move forward as efficiently as possible.

Happy home remodeling/renovating!

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