Feature image from CONTRACTII
Renovating your house is not easy. It is long, and hard and messy. Friends will tell you that they made a few mistakes, “If I was renovating now, I would do things very differently.”
…But what things! What exactly are those things and how can you avoid them when it is your turn to renovate your house. Make sure that your renovation is not a relationship breaking budget blow out! Here is a list of the top ten common mistakes people make and how you can avoid them.
1. Cost Cutting on Materials
Building materials and labor is very expensive. As you will be paying for all of these items from your bank account, it is easy to fall into the trap of trying to cost cut. If you are not a professional electrician, you won’t be able to cost cut on the labor side of things. Don’t be tempted to cost cut on materials either. Cheap building products and home furnishings will only damage the value of your home, not improve it.
Instead of saving money on materials, try and source quality recycled items for your home. You can always save money on design and stylings. Make simple elegant design choices that are cleaner, common functional and inexpensive.
2. Lazy measurements / Inaccurate measurements
This is obviously one of the biggest time wasters of them all. Measure twice, cut once – That is the rule.
3. Ignoring the importance of lighting
Lighting can make or break a home. It is not until you are in the finished product that you will appreciate the beauty of good lighting. You won’t notice good lighting, but bad lighting will drive you mad for years. Get your lights in the right spot first time by consulting an architect or interior designer. There is a science to lighting, that you don’t have time to learn.
4. Assume it will be easier for you than anyone else.
Unless you are a professional builder, renovating your house will be just as crazy and exhausting for you as it was from your friend. Don’t go into the renovation process overly confident or cocky. Be humble about how much work it will take and prepare for the worst possible outcomes. Have money in reserve for any blowouts and don’t beat yourself up when things don’t go to plan.
5. Using the wrong paint
There are cheap paints and there are expensive paints. If you think all paint is created equally then you are wrong. Cheaper paint normally means a cheaper product and a cheaper finish.
6. Forgetting to upgrading the electrical
Electricals should be one of the first things that you get a quote for when renovating your home. Electricals are vital to keep your home flowing. I know many couples who have renovated their kitchens without upgrading their electricals, only to find the house short circuits when the dishwasher and kettle are running at the same time. Make sure your electrical board can handle the new demands.
7. Setting an unrealistic budget
Every renovation in history costs more than you expect. Weather, insurance, personal problems, holidays, work and family all get in the way to delay proceedings. Be prepared for this. You must have spare cash up your sleeve to finish the job.
8. Confusing Reality TV with Reality
Reality TV is edited, which creates distortion of the truth. This means that the stories and projects depicted on Reality TV shows, such as THE BLOCK, have been distorted. They are not real life. Don’t think that watching a whole season of The Block will you prepare you for what is about to happen.
9. Being too Trendy
It is important that you make sure your home is stylish and unique and wonderful BUT it’s also important that your home does not date too quickly. Classic looks, and choices that can be updated quickly with a few simple styling changes.
10. Lack of Education
Home renovations is not the time to ‘figure things out’ as you go. Unless you feel like wasting heaps of time and money on a project, while you walk around with no clue of what to do – read up before you begin.
Mostly these mistakes come down to people not making a good plan. People making choices without knowing enough about what they are doing. Not doing enough research and not wanting to seek it out.
The best way to avoid renovation mistakes is to think hard about why you want to renovate in the first place. This will help you ensure that you make the right choices for the right reasons.
Are you renovating your home to make a quick dollar?
Or do you want to create a beautiful space for your family to live in?
How did your renovations go?