More than 90 percent of American homeowners plan to remodel or renovate their homes in the near future. And for good reason: it adds value to the property and makes the house more usable for years to come.
If you’re planning a home improvement job, you’ll quickly find out that there’s more to the process than just finding new appliances. You need to make sure you’re ready for the project long before you contact your first contractor.
Here are a few key things to think about before you start planning things in earnest.
Choose the Right Home Improvement Job
Before you can start making improvements and changing your home, you need to figure out which improvements are worth your time and money. Think about why you’re wanting to make improvements.
Are you wanting to upgrade features to increase the property value and make the house more sellable? Or do you want to make changes so the property is more usable for you and your family?
Understanding what you want to achieve will make choosing the right home improvement project easier.
Remember, if you’re planning on staying in the house for several years, you’ll want to choose improvements that make the house more comfortable for you. If you’re planning on selling your home in the near future, tailoring the improvements to suit prospective buyers will be a better choice.
Think About Your Comfort Level Working on Projects
Once you know what types of projects you want to tackle, you need to decide what you’re comfortable doing on your own.
Some people are extremely well-versed in DIY renovation projects. Others want to learn how to do it themselves and are willing to take their time renovating in order to learn a new skill. Other homeowners just lack the time or desire to handle things on their own and prefer to hire an experienced contractor.
There’s no right or wrong answer here. It all depends on what you’re comfortable doing and how much work you’re willing to put into the project.
Before you make a decision, think about what you’re willing to handle on your own. If you prefer doing things yourself, great. If you want to leave it to a professional, that’s fine.
Just remember that you can and should take your time when trying to choose a contractor for a home improvement project. Speak with several professionals and get quotes from each one.
Compare the quotes in detail, read up on reviews from their previous clients, and choose the contractor you’re most comfortable with.
Set a Firm Budget
One of the most important things you’ll need to do before you can start a home improvement project is to determine a firm budget. Look at your savings and think about how much of those funds you’re willing to use for the project.
If you’re not paying for the work in cash, think about how you’ll cover the rest of the cost. Will you finance the project with a home improvement loan? If so, try to get pre-qualified to see how much you’ll be able to borrow.
Are you considering using your credit card to cover the cost? Make sure you’re able to afford the payments to pay off your debt quickly.
If finances are tight, it may be better to start saving up for a few months before you start getting estimates for the project. The more you can save, the less your home improvement efforts will contribute to your total debt burden.
Shop Around for Everything
Once you know how much you can afford to spend on the task, you’ll need to find ways to stay as close to that number as possible. This means you’ll need to shop around and compare the costs from different providers.
If you’re hiring a contractor, get estimates from at least three professionals and compare their costs closely. Look at how much they charge for materials, labor, and any other incidental costs.
If you’re doing the work on your own, shop around for the materials and tools you’ll need. Look for the lowest prices you can find and order from those suppliers. Just make sure the products you’re ordering are high-quality options.
Have a Plan to Deal With the Work
No matter what type of home improvement ideas you’re considering you can count on one thing: the work will be disruptive to your daily routine. Before work starts, make sure you have a plan in place to deal with those disruptions.
For example, if you have pets, consider taking them to a boarding facility or daycare facility while you’re away from home. If you’re working on your kitchen or bathroom and won’t be able to use it at all, consider staying with a friend or renting a hotel room until the project is over.
Be Ready for Delays
No matter how prepared you feel for the project, there’s always a chance that things will fall behind. Suppliers run out of products, contractors encounter extensive repairs while working, and problems pop up without warning.
Even minor issues can create major delays in your home improvement job’s timeline.
Be ready for those delays and stay calm when they pop up. If you can find ways to speed things back up, great. If not, be patient take a deep breath, and keep progressing with the parts of the project that you can.
Things will eventually fall into place. It just might take a little longer than you anticipated.
Now You’re Ready to Plan Your Home Improvement Project
Once you think about these important things before starting work on your home improvement job, you’ll be in good shape. Just remember that the improvements don’t have to be huge or noticeable to make a big difference in the comfort of your house.
Focus on choosing projects that will make the property fit your needs and never stop improving your property. This way, you’ll increase property value while also making sure your house is as functional and ideal as it can be for your family.
Looking for more tips to help you manage your upcoming home improvement projects? Check out our latest posts.