A few months ago, I was preparing dinner in my kitchen looking outside at my massive, but desperately looking lawn and decided it was time for a change. From the moment we purchased the home we knew it would need a lot of TLC, particularly in the kitchen and backyard. As life would have it we got married, became homeowners, and shortly thereafter, parents. So, as the story goes, the kid’s needs come first so we put off any hopes of renovating. Now that our darling little girl is seven, we managed to save up enough cash to remodel our home.
I figured I had a pretty good idea on what to expect from watching an insane amount of home improvement shows, but to be quite honest, there are a lot of details they don’t disclose. Like not having access to a kitchen for weeks at a time or the numerous issues that could go wrong in between. We got through it all, thankfully, but I figured there are plenty of couples who could learn from our experience.
Whatever Your Budget Is You Need More
Here’s the first lesson when planning a home renovation project, you need a buffer in your budget. There are so many things that aren’t included in an initial estimate that you’ll need to account for. Not to mention, there are a ton of things that could go wrong during the remodel that need to be factored into the budget. So, make sure you have plenty of wiggle room in the budget like the labor, materials, permits, and unforeseen problems including electrical wiring, plumbing, water damage, and structural issues.
It Pays to Hire an Experienced Designer
I thought I knew exactly how I wanted our new indoor and outdoor kitchens to look, but as I started looking at the various samples and demos, there were just too many options to pick from. We decided to enlist a little help, so we searched for an interior designer. We interviewed several with impressive portfolios and experience, however, we eventually selected a young woman who had a product design degree. The educational background gave her an extra edge over the competition. She was not only able to help us narrow down our selections, but give us a clear vision of how various concepts come together. It was awesome.
Plan for Schedule Interruptions
What they don’t show on those home improvement shows is just how inconvenient certain renovations can be for your family schedule. If you’re getting work done on your kitchen like we were, this essentially means you have nowhere to cook. You and your family will have to either make due with electric appliances like a microwave, crockpot, or electric burner, or you’ll need to put ordering takeout into the budget.
You May Need a Hotel
Though you may be able to manage without having access to your kitchen, what can become disturbing is the clanging, banging, and hammering of the contractors. Obviously, they’re just doing their job, but the noise and the constant back and forth traffic in your already noisy household can become a bit much. Our renovations took several weeks, we decided to stay in a hotel on the weekends to get a break from the commotion.
Something Always Goes Wrong (Well, Almost)
I can’t speak for every home renovation project, but what I can say is I’ve heard a lot of stories where something goes wrong. For us, it was a pest problem. Apparently, mice had chewed their way through some of the wires in the kitchen and we had to have the electric redone in there to prevent a fire. That set us back a bit, but hey, better to be safe than sorry later.
Adding your Favorite Gadgets to Home
A renovation is also applicable to buying new products that make living more comfortable. For example, home appliances like Smart fridges, Solar panels, Voice enabled assistants like Google Home, Alexa, Robot Vacuum Cleaners, Bladeless Fans and much more.
Samsung Smart Fridge:
It is a great fridge that offers both style and substance, especially if you’re looking for high-end appliance upgrades on a tight budget (as part of a larger home remodel, perhaps).
Amazon Echo is a hands-free smart speaker that you control using your voice. It connects to Alexa – a cloud-based voice service to play music, make calls, check weather and news, set alarms, control smart home devices, and much more.
Roomba vacuuming robots are powered by a full suite of smart sensors that automatically guide the robot around your home. The robot makes 60 decisions every second, navigating under furniture and around clutter to thoroughly clean your floors. It is the combination of a powerful cleaning system with intelligent sensors, our robots move seamlessly through your home, adapting to the surroundings to thoroughly vacuum your floors.
Dyson Cool fans project a stream of smooth, high-velocity air, for personal cooling. And because they have no fast-spinning blades they’re safe and easy to clean.
Remember to Enjoy It
A last bit of advice is in the midst of all the madness that goes on during a home renovation project, try to find some peace. You’re actually getting to put the home of your dreams together after waiting all these years. Take your time choosing outdoor cabinets and floor tiles, play around with different color patterns and fabric textures. Simply enjoy the luxury of being able to bring some new life back into the home you love so much.
Needless to say, if you think to watch a ton of Love It or List It, Property Brothers or Fixer Upper episodes means you’re an expert in all things home improvement, think again. The shows are definitely a good look at what goes into it, they provide great style inspiration and are quite entertaining, but in reality, you need to be aware of what to expect. For us, things turned out okay, but we definitely learned a lot for whenever we decide to remodel again.