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These Are The 10 Steps To A Great Home Remodel Plan

Planning for a home remodel can be daunting if you’ve never done it before. And you might be right; it is challenging. However, with a remodeling guide, you can know what to expect and how to handle the remodel step by step.

The steps for a great renovation plan involve identifying the right people, products, activities, and the financials that can make the whole project successful. An effective remodel plan is detailed so that it can be a go-to resource for guidelines during the actual developments. 

Planning a remodel takes time, money, and lots of work. However, proper planning is necessary if you want great results and a seamless process. In this article, you’ll learn everything that makes up an excellent renovation strategy and how to perform those steps.

Decide On The Budget

Your budget is one of the main determinants of your renovation project success, and should therefore be your priority. You have to know how much you’re willing to spend on your project before choosing what you will spend it on.

Whether your project is big or small, determine the estimated cost and choose what you’re willing to compromise on. You must state your remodeling goals and make a budget that suits them.  Determine the purpose for the renovations, as well. Are you trying to increase the value of your home, or are you remodeling for aesthetic purposes? 

Either way, here are some budgeting tips for a remodeling plan:

  • Calculate the total cost of your home after the changes and ensure that your budget targets the most impactful renovations.
  • Prioritize structural repair costs instead of aesthetics.
  • Check the proportionality of a particular space remodeling cost with that of your house value.
  • Aim for a balance in high-end and low-end materials where they matter.
  • Budget for the best you can afford. 
  • Set 10% to 20% of your total budget aside for unexpected costs.
  • Include waste handling in your costs.

Be ready to shift the budget you allocate to each part of a project more than once as you learn more about your project. Once you have the money and have set a cost limit, you can carry out the following renovation steps.

Check Out Remodeling Ideas

This is the fun part where you get to check out numerous ideas and collect inspiration for your home improvement project. In this step, you determine how you want your place to look and feel, visualizing your home after the remodel.

You can visit Pinterest, Houzz, among others, for remodeling ideas that can blow your mind. However, remember to stick to your budget since you’ll find a lot to entice you. Even if you incorporate some interesting plans, ensure that you don’t deviate too much from your budget.

Moreover, remodeling ideas are there to inspire a result, not the process itself. Even if you find something you like, you can find several ways to achieve the outcome – including some that you can afford. So, list the ideas you want to incorporate and move on to the next step.

Choose What You’ll Be Renovating

After listing a random Wishlist of the remodeling ideas that appeal to you, narrow down your list to the things you’re going to do. At this stage, you can piece together the visual elements to make sense of a complete design.

At this point, you will also need to refine the list of needs and wants that can fit your budget. Tweak your costs, especially if they go beyond the earlier cost estimates  (which you can expect).

Design Your Ideal Space

You know what you want and what you can afford, so now it’s time to draw. You might need drawings for your renovation project, depending on its size and complexity. You may also have to submit those drawings to local housing authorities for approval according to where you live.

The more complex your project is, the harder it is for the builder to give it a perfect finish without a definitive drawing. The problem with not drawing layouts or sketches is that you may miss some details that can cost you more money along the way.

Moreover, a solid design also makes it easier for both you and your builder. You can hold your builder accountable in case they make a mistake since there’s proof of what you wanted in the drawing. 

You can create a design by yourself or with the help of a friend, if you cannot afford a professional. However, this is not recommended for complex projects- these require a pro. Here are some renovation design apps and software to help you:

You can use the designs you make from these resources to explain the updates you want. These options provide you with an excellent low-cost approach to planning a remodel. 

Separate DIY And Professional Jobs

If you don’t mind DIYing to save more money, this is a step you don’t want to miss. Depending on your project, you might have some jobs you can handle yourself. You can create a list where you label each part of the project as DIY or needing a professional, according to your home improvement skills.

The table below shows you remodeling projects that are generally DIY-friendly and those that are best left for professionals:

 

Project DIY-friendly
Electrical installation updates
Plumbing
Toilet removal and installation
HVAC
Cabinet removal and installation
Painting
Asbestos installation or removal
Flooring
Wallpaper removal and installation
Sourcing materials
Handling heavy structures
Waterproofing

(Source: FamilyHandyman, Architectural Digest)

The above chart merely shows general guidelines. However, if you need professional results even in decorative projects, getting an expert is the best option. Sometimes DIY can cost you your sanity if you love high-standard finishes.

Choose Your Contractors

Since you know what jobs you’ll outsource, this step should help you match your needs with the right contractor. However, at this point, you might have consulted with a particular contractor a couple of times and think they might be right for you.

Your ideal contractor should:

  • Be experienced in the projects you wish to have done.
  • Have a license and the insurance required to do the work.
  • Provide a proper detailed written estimate.
  • Help you get all the permits your project requires.
  • Have a thorough understanding of what your project needs and agree with the reasonable amount you said you could pay.

The contractor you choose can either make the whole renovating experience feel rewarding or strenuous. Therefore, you need to take your time with this step. You shouldn’t force yourself to work with anyone, and no one should pressure you to work with them.

Create The Project Timeline

Depending on your project, your home remodeling can take anywhere from one week to eight months. These things take time to get right, and there might be unexpected events that extend the schedule. However, a good contractor should provide you with a timeline outlining the various stages of the renovation process.

Making changes in your house and anticipating the updates can make the remodeling timeline feel like forever. So, you must be comfortable with the timeline that the contractor proposes to you before accepting it.

Some causes of delays you can expect are:

  • Product stocking and shipping delays
  • Inspections and permit releases
  • Plan modifications
  • Weather
  • Incompetent contractor issues like lack of funding, miscalculation of timelines, and other problems.

Be aware that the timelines that any contractor gives you are a broad estimate of how long a project can take if there are no hiccups. It can help you plan for things like shifting your kitchen or even staying out of your home for some time.

Get The Final Cost Estimates

You may have a few quotes from different contractors by now, and know what is needed for each process. This is the time for dealing with the final budget, and you may have to drop some things from your plan.

In the final cost estimate, you should have all the information you need to decide how to move forward. You need to choose your contractor and include their labor costs. Now that you have theorized every single aspect of your remodeling strategy, you should be ready to source the materials.

Gather The Materials

Assembling the materials you need is still part of your planning — and it can take time. Take your time with the purchases so you can minimize shipping costs and also take advantage of limited timeline discounts. Moreover, you need to be able to return anything that doesn’t fit your design plans.

Here’s how to conveniently find the right materials for your remodeling project:

  • List all the materials you need.
  • Record the sizes you need.
  • State the quality of the materials as recommended by your contractor.
  • Go shopping where professionals go.
  • Be careful about what you buy online.

When purchasing materials, never downgrade where quality matters. Always aim at value for the price instead of cheapness.

Prepare Yourself And Plan Your Space

Once you’ve collected the remodeling materials and its almost time to start the project, you need to prepare your space for the changes. This will help you stay comfortable despite the renovations.

Here’s how you can prepare yourself and your home for renovations:

    • Determine where you’ll be living during the remodel: You can stay with your friend, family, in a hotel, or even go for a vacation. If you choose to stay at home, you’ll have to make changes that adapt to the ongoing activities.
    • Choose a kitchen space: If you’ll be staying at home and cooking, you have to create a temporary kitchen in case the normal one is being renovated.
    • Protect anything that can be destroyed: Dust, debris, foot traffic, and other components of remodeling can affect many things in your home. Make it easy for your contractor and yourself by protecting them in any way you can.
    • Prepare your family for the changes: Construction can be messy and loud, so make sure your family is well prepared.
  • Ensure that you deal with any issues that may affect your neighbors or community beforehand.
  • Keep your valuables secured.
  • Establish work area limits: Your workmen should only be where they can comfortably carry out their tasks, not anywhere else in your property.

You have to prepare yourself and space depending on the nature of your project. Plan everything you can think of at this stage, because it’s the final step that marks the end of planning. All  that remains is to begin is the project.

 

Other Tips For Remodel Planning

When planning for a home remodel, you might overlook some things since they seem unimportant. However, you need to know what issues should be taken seriously so that you can create a smart plan. Here are more tips for planning a renovation:

Ask Questions

Whether you involve an architect, designer, contractor, or any other expert in your remodeling project, don’t be afraid of asking questions. You need to know every single detail about the process and how they plan to handle it.

The reason you need experts is for them to do what you can’t do. Therefore, seek their professional opinion on anything related to your project, and weigh all the factors so you can make informed decisions.

Work With Credible Firms

One of the worst mistakes some people make is going to any construction company and striking a deal with them. They don’t do any background checks, ask for their credentials, or seek references . This sets them up for disappointments more often than not.

Here are steps you can take to determine a company’s credibility:

  1. Ask other people around you if they have or know anyone who’s had an experience with them.
  2. Check their online presence (reviews, website, social media)
  3. Check if they’re reasonably priced to deliver quality results.
  4. Ask for their referrals. If they’re willing to give them to you, they probably did good work in the past. 

Instead of getting attracted by any low prices construction workers throw at you, do your due diligence to know if they can be relied on for your particular project.

Check Out Your Contractors’ Work

The fact that some customers are happy with their results doesn’t mean the contractor is right for you. When assessing a remodeling contractor, one of the best ways to know they can deliver what you need is by checking out projects they’ve worked on. 

Moreover, you can reach out to their past clients so you can know what they are good at. If you are considering a general contractor, specialty contractor, or both, you can know if they are suitable for you based on their portfolio.

Include Waste Handling In Your Plans

One of the things you want to avoid is a pile of concrete and debris on your driveway, backyard, or anywhere it shouldn’t be on your property. You should plan how you’re going to dispose of waste and budget for it, if your project is DIY. 

Write Any Relevant Detail Worth Remembering

Write everything down and keep any written document safe. If your contractor does anything different from your agreed specifications, you can hold them accountable. Moreover, you can track your planning process during the entire project if you have written details. 

Track Your Expenses

It’s vital to track where your money is going and when it will be spent. This will help you adjust your budget by changing the size and grade of orders as you deem fit instead of overspending. So, from the day you start planning your project to the day it’s completed, keep a record of your expenses. 

Get One Person to Manage The Renovation

It’s okay to use different experts for different jobs. However, you should have only one person managing the operations if you can’t do it yourself. This ensures the consistency of the project plan. Furthermore, it makes the worker’s communication easier and more effective. Therefore, decide who’ll take the project management role when planning and include expenses to be incurred if there’ll be any.

Don’t Rush

Desiring progress with your plan is understandable, but rushing it isn’t. Take your time and ponder on what you want out of your remodeling since what you decide will affect your house in the long-term. If you rush the planning process and change your mind later, it might cost you more time and money than you think. 

The fact that you’ve decided to remodel doesn’t mean you should get started in two weeks. In some cases, you’ll have to wait for the product with the right quality, and you might have to wait till your contractor finishes another project.

Consider The Weather

Plan your project calendar with the weather in mind. Check the short term and long term weather forecasts and consider the season when scheduling your project. If you’re doing a DIY remodel, plan the different developments according to their weather-friendliness. If you’re hiring a contractor, they can help you with this. 

 

Conclusion

Even though creating a home remodeling plan can be challenging, it is also an exciting part of the process. Since you now know how to create a successful remodel plan, you can do it yourself and manage the entire project effectively. Take note of the home renovation tips as well, so you can create a plan that leads to a seamless home improvement scheme.

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