9 Steps to Planning a Home Remodeling Project
So you are getting ready to start your home remodel and maybe this is your first time doing a home remodel and you are wondering, "where do i even start with my home remodel?" Or maybe, "What is the first step in the home remodel process?" There are a hundred questions in between those you could be asking as well. No matter the question about the home remodel process, we have you covered here with the steps involved with planning your home remodel process.
In this article we will discuss the steps we recommend you take at the beginning and during your home remodeling project to ensure it goes as smooth as possible. Often times, homeowners contact us wondering what they can do to prepare for a home remodel, or maybe they have got the ball rolling and they arent sure what to do next and they are left wondering. We have even had clients contact us and ask us to take over home remodeling projects because their previous contractor doesn't seem to have a process at all and just does the work.
Below we listed the 9 Most Important Steps Planning and Withstanding a Home Remodel, in order, to ensure the smoothest, stress free time for you.
Create Your Remodel "Wishlist": Before anything, you must consider what it is you want your end result to look like. Everything from the layout of the room, the "flow" of the space once everything is installed, to color scheme, finishes, and fixtures. During this step, we recommend you put pen to paper and write a list of all your Must Haves, your Wants, and your Wishes. It is important in this step to consider things like, how will each item on this list affect your day to day life if you were to have it, or not have it. Or, how will it make mine and my families lives easier. Making a list of each of these will give you ammo that you can bring to your contractor once you are at that step and you can work through your budget to determine which ones on each list you can have. Sometimes there will be some adjustments to the lists but this will help give you an idea of costs of the project, as well as what the final product will look like.
Set Your Budget: This is the step that tends to get people hung up early on in the process. Mainly, because people tend to cut themselves short or underestimate what a remodel will actually cost all in. We have even had clients intentially try to negotiate pricing lower for the higher quality services and products as a way to try and get a top dollar kitchen for a low dollar budget. The budget is crucial because understanding what your remodel will cost and having a reasonable budget can change the entire list of what your wants, needs, and wishes are. With setting a budget, this may be a time in which you can reach out to contractors and send them your wishlist as well as some inspiration photos to help give the contractor an idea of your vision for your space. In doing this, most contractors should be able to give you a budgetary figure that you can go off of so you can at least know what you can start to add to the final list of what you want in the final product. When speaking with a contractor, you should be able to get a range. While exact figures are nearly impossible at this stage, you should be able to get a range that is close(within a couple thousand dollars or so). Remember that your final product will be determined on how much you are willing to spend.
Do Some Research: Okay. Now you have your list of must haves, wants, and wishes and you spoke to some contractors you like and have hammered out a budget. Now, it's time to do some research. In this step, you will work through what you will expect when you are knee deep in the middle of your home remodeling project. Maybe thats why you are here reading this article. It is important to research the final products you have decided on such as appliances, fixtures, flooring care, etc. It is even worth reading other articles on things you can do during the process to ensure your stress stays as low as possible. We have some here on our education page that you can read. The whole point of this step is to arm yourself with as much information as possible so that there are little-to-no surprises during the process. The last thing you want as a homeowner and the last thing we want as your remodeling contractor is for you to be blindsided by something you weren't expecting or something that was completely avoidable. You can even ask your preferred contractor what you can expect during the process so that you are fully aware of what to expect from them from start to finish.
Don't Focus On Current Trends: We see this all the time. Homeowners what the "in" thing for their home and they want to match exactly what they find online. While this goes against our advice of providing inspiration photos to your contractor, we recommend you dont follow trends just to follow trends. The problem with trends is that they come and go and the last thing you want is to spend your hard earned money on a kitchen, bathroom, or whole home remodel, follow what's trending, and then the trend dies 6 months later. We recommend using trends as more of a guide. Use trends to find what speaks to you and to see what you like. Then take what you like and incorporate that into your project.
Hire A Reputable, Licensed Contractor: Hopefully, during steps 2 and 3 you have found a contractor you like and trust to handle your home remodeling project. Choosing the right contractor to meet your needs is very important. Make sure the contractor you hire is licensed and capable. The number of horror stories we have seen due to homeowners hiring unlicensed, inexperienced contractors just to save a buck or two is way higher than we would like to admit. Choosing a contractor that has a strong, reliable reputation in your city is a good way to ensure your project meets your expectations. Your contractor is your partner through this. You want to make sure you are both on the same page every step of the way. Having a contractor you trust and can ask questions to and know they will be addressed is key. Take the opportunity when choosing your contractor to ask as many questions about the project as possible to help establish a clear vision for your project. And please, please, please, make sure you hire a contractor that provides you with a contractor. If a contractor does not give you a contract or, at the very least, a term sheet, do not hire them. The last thing you want if something goes wrong, is to be in a legal battle with no binding agreement doing the "he said, she said" argument.
Establish and Undertand Your Timeline: With this step you will work with your contractor to get an idea of how long your project will take. If you hired a reputable contractor, they should be able to give you a pretty accurate timeframe to completion assuming that no issues rear their head during the process or there arent any delays in getting materials. Usually, when we work with clients, we will give a target date of completion and structure the work around the target end date. For example, you might tell your contractor that you would like this project to be done before the holidays because you would like to be able to host some get togethers with your family and friends. Your contractor should be able to tell you if thats even possible in the first place. If so, they will be able to structure their work for each step of the job to ensure they meet your preferred completion date. If not, your contractor may give alternative dates that are more reasonable for the work at hand. It is important to consider the amount of work at hand and trust your contractor's judgement.
Pack Up and Declutter: This step may be applicable to you or not depending on if you are living in the home at the time of your remodel. If you just bought the home and it is empty, you can likely skip this step. But if you are currently living in the home or their is furnishing and other items in the home it is important to protect your belongings by removing everything you can out of the work area. If you are doing a whole home remodel this can be a bit more tricky if you plan on staying in the home during the project. If this is you, work with your contractor to coordinate living arrangements during the project. If you plan on staying elsewhere as your project is being completed, it is important you get everything out of the space. This includes and furnishings like couches, tables, rugs, etc. Things you dont want to get dirty or damaged. The most common thing we see is homeowners will store their belongings in their garage during the project. That way they dont have to pay for offsite storage. If this isn't possible for you, renting a storage unit or a POD may be worth looking into as a way to store your belongings during the project.
Plan Ahead For Life During Your Renovation: This one goes hand in hand with the last step. Determine wether or not you will be living in the home during your remodeling project or if you will be staying elsewhere. Your timeline and costs incurred can be affected by which one you choose. If you choose to live in the home, it may cause delays due to having to rearrange your home every time the work area moves to another room in the house. If you choose to stay in a hotel, of course those cost money and that can get expensive id your project takes longer. Living in the home during the renovation can increase your stress and irritability due to the loud noises, dust, and other things that go on during a remodel. We recommend you consider your daily routine and finances when making your choice. While we wont try to steer you in a particular direction, we just ask you to look into which one makes the most sense for you.
Protect Kids and Pets: Another step that may not apply to you if you dont have kids, or you do and they dont live with you, or if you dont have pets. But if you have either kids, or pets, or both, it is important that you protect them during the remodel process. Keeping your kids and pets out of the contractors working area will prevent them from hurting themselves on tools, materials, or exposed nails and screws that may be present during the remodel. Getting a pet sitter may be the best for your beloved animals and putting up baby gates to keep your children from wandering into the work area will help guarantee their safety.
There are other steps that you may find that fall in between these steps. These are the ones we found that are consistent with every home remodel project no matter the size. Each home remodeling project is different and the steps or the order in which you attack them may change. We know home remodeling can be stressful and it is our mission to be a resource to you and your family to ensure it goes as smoothly as possible. Hopefully these steps were helpful to you and you are able to make a plan for your remodel that works best for you.
Our goal at Paramount Craftsman Services is to ensure your remodel goes as smooth as possible and that we Bring Your Vision To Life. If you are in Northern Nevada, in the Reno, Sparks, Incline Village or surrounding areas and are ready to start your remodeling project, our team of experts are here to ensure you take your vision and make it a reality. To learn more about our process and how we can best help you, visit our website by clicking here.