Think like a Boy Scout
The best first step in any remodeling project is to prepare yourself by planning ahead. Every little bit of time and energy spent on planning and preparation can greatly reduce the amount you have to spend on tough decisions and corrections later on. Before starting your project, be sure to:
» Hire a professional, licensed contractor to perform the work.
» Make sure the contractor you hire is well-versed on the most recent building codes in the area.
» Use a detailed design process to develop a plan for the room(s), choose materials and fixtures, and create a realistic budget for the project.
» Consider staging the work ahead of time to give yourself a realistic idea of the work to be done and cut down on labor costs.
For most of your remodeling goals and objectives, there will usually be more than one option. By considering all your options and discussing them with your contractor, you can save money while still achieving the desired result. Some examples include:
» Rather than repairing minor blemishes on walls by doing costly structural work, considering using materials to mask the wall, as long as it is still structurally sound. With minor imperfections, discolorations or slight damage, you can use a decorative painting technique or a heavier, textured wallpaper to cover up the area.
» Likewise, if a room just needs to be livened up, consider repainting first before getting more involved. You may find that the new color is enough to spruce the area up.
» Rather than creating new space by knocking down walls or building new additions, try instead to create the illusion of more space. Mirrors, skylights, and additional windows are all simple ways to make a small room seem bigger without the trouble of adding square footage.
By keeping some of these tips in mind, you can help to ensure that your house becomes the dream home you have always wanted, without the nightmares of costly or incorrect updates.