Here are seven tips for renovating a home on how to get you moving.
Start by decluttering
Before calling your first business person, make your life easier by taking a jump and become ruthless about your mess. After all, it’s likely to take up space and make things seem messy, which are probably two reasons why you’re renovating in the first place.
Call the professionals
Do you really know what secrets are hidden behind your wallpaper? Is there a crack in the ceiling that you’re sure wasn’t there last winter? As you look around the house, you will notice things that disturb you. Instead of getting excited, bring in the experts.
Roofers, electricians, builders and humidity experts will offer free or reasonable estimates and give you a good idea of what you’re struggling with. Make sure you get lots of estimates, even if you’re impressed with the first one.
If it’s your first time renovating, don’t start with a spiral staircase to a turret that doesn’t exist. The kitchen and bathroom renovations are fantastic to start and the finished product will give you the confidence to face bigger projects. You will also get some practice working with merchants and managing a budget.
Chances are you have met someone who has been renewed and was baffled by running out of budget. Avoid it by costing everything, setting a budget and adding 15% to the total cost as a contingency.
A trick is to start with a small reserve of money for items like rugs and wallpaper. From there, you can always consider a small remortgage for bigger improvements.
Hire a project manager
Project managers can save the renewal. They will contact the merchants, ensure that all the work is done to specification and advice on restructuring as it progresses. You will thank yourself for hiring one when you hit an obstacle.
Formalize your agreements
Once you’ve hired a project manager, be sure to formalize your relationship. The Joint Contract Tribunal (JCT) has a contract model to help. This contract covers payment terms, working hours, insurance and guarantees. It also deals with how to make changes to the required work, how to manage the builders who take longer to complete a project and resolve disputes.
Don’t hire anyone who refuses to sign a JCT contract and remembers being precise when detailing the job you want to complete.
Wait for the unexpected
The snow falls, people get sick and sometimes the products and equipment ordered by the factory take 10 weeks to arrive instead of six. You and your contractor will likely work from a program that assumes the world is a perfect place. It is not, and knowing that it will allow you to be more resilient if everything does not go according to plan.
Following these tips on board will help you face life on a property that looks like a bomb site when work is in progress. With preparation, a budget, a big leap and the right team behind you, your dream home is just around the corner.