Check It Off!: Utilize This Simple Checklist to Ensure An Efficient Home Renovation

Posted on February 25th, 2017 by Nastazsa Cabrera

Below is a helpful list that will serve as a guide to making sure your home renovation is the most efficient and stress-free experience as possible.

Strategize: 

  • Prioritizing – How long have you been needing a second bathroom? Is it more important than a wet bar, perhaps? If you have 3 or more people living in the household, it most likely is. Separating your wants from your needs will set the tone for budgeting. Trying to avoid over-spending is an obstacle homeowners typically run into during the later designing phases. That’s why it’s easier to establish your priorities much earlier.
  • Set a Budget – After distinguishing what you absolutely need from what you don’t, it’s time to set your budget. Once you calculate a rough estimate you can start exploring possibilities with your team. Budgeting allows you to filter out and eliminate options that just won’t cut it for your personal needs. It saves time and the guess work for not only yourself but for the architect or contractor as well.
  • Time Management – It’s always good to plan ahead. It’s also good to plan a wide window of time to prepare for any issues or set-backs that may arise. For instance, if you want your dream kitchen built by the time winter hits, you don’t want to wait until fall to start the entire process of renovating unless you plan on dining in restaurants all throughout the New Year. If you’re looking to have an outdoor patio completed just in time for summer activities, then the beginning of spring isn’t the best time to start planning. Some renovations require more time than others. However, simply put, it is always a good idea to be best prepared for just about anything. If it were a kitchen remodel, elements such as types of cabinetry (material, color, size), hardware, appliances, tiling, the process of selecting countertops from a large variety of slabs, and of course the installation all together would require careful thought, time, and consideration. Renovation is something you do not want to rush through. Taking your time and delving through your options is an important part of being happy with the investment you are making. Make sure you have the right team to support this aspect.

Assemble the Right Team:

  • Start Researching Contractors – Working with the right crew is probably the most important element of a successful renovation. Without their knowledge and experience, it becomes an unfortunate case of the blind leading the blind. We turn to them for their expertise and want to trust that they will fully understand all of our needs. They should be capable of answering any and all questions you may have throughout the entire process. Their ability to problem solve any issues is a must. Taking as much time as you need to find a contractor/architect who is best suited for you is absolutely vital. You can start by conducting a thorough research for candidates. Referrals from your family, friends, and neighbors is one of the best ways to go about this. Make sure to ask them for their full feedback, including the positive and the negative (if any). All personal experiences are highly valued when making an informed decision. The second best way to find a contractor or architect is to search online. It can be quite overwhelming as there are plenty of options available over the web. However, if you base your requirements on the following qualifications assessment in the next category below, then narrowing down your options should be less of a hassle.
  • Narrow Down Your Options (Interviewing Process) – As stated above, assessing qualifications is an absolute must when it comes to finding the right person. First and foremost, they must have a license to perform their services. Second, legitimate and reputable websites/links to view their portfolios on is extremely important. High quantity positive reviews with firm sources are always helpful to read through as well. Once you narrow down the potential candidates, jot down a list of thorough questions to ask that will help communicate exactly what you are looking for. Your utmost goals and expectations should be disclosed during the interviewing process. This is your chance to present your ideas to someone who is able to provide you with all the most realistic possibilities of completing your project. Consider these top 15 interview questions (provided by Donatelli Builders) to help organize your list.

Final Preparation:

  • Find a Haven Within Your Home –  This is highly recommended if it is possible during the type of renovation required. Choosing an area in the house that experiences the least disturbance while all the commotion is going on will keep you sane throughout the mess. If this isn’t possible during your renovation, then making & confirming arrangements to stay at your family’s, friend’s, or at a hotel would be good to get out of the way now. Once your contractor gives you a start date, you may begin the pack-up process.
  • Create a System for Your Kids & Pets – It’s normal for kids and pets alike to be intrigued or scared by loud unfamiliar noises/faces in their home. Explaining the situation and what to expect is a priority if your kids are old enough to understand. Creating a definitive barrier between the ruckus and the younger toddlers/babies and pets is essential. Moving around and scheduling time frames as necessary for specific activities such as homework & nap time is important to cover as well.
  • Review the Contract – If you have to triple, no, quadruple check the contract then by all means PLEASE DO! Check out this article published on Time.com that summarizes seven things your contract needs to have before you decide to take the plunge and move forward.

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