If you live in an older home or are considering buying one, at some point you may need to consider making major home improvements. An older house may require major overhauls for safety reasons or to adequately provide for the needs of a growing family. Even if you’re the most seasoned DIY pro, you’ll need to sit down and develop a plan for major remodels. You’ll need to carefully weigh your options and come up with a reasonable scope, budget and schedule. Here are some things to consider.
Budget and Financing
Before getting carried away with renovation plans, you need to determine your budget. Do you have money saved for remodeling? If the scope exceeds available funds, you’ll need financing to cover the costs. Personal loans, home equity loans and lines of credit are just some of the many options available. Even if you can pay for everything yourself, you should make sure to allocate funds in a way that you make the most with your budget.
Sensible Scope and Schedule
When it comes to improvements, don’t go overboard. Once you know how much money you have, come up with a realistic scope of the work to be done. What type of upgrades must be done? The scope of work should be commensurate to the budget and the overall goal of the remodel. For example, it doesn’t make sense to spend $95,000 on a kitchen overhaul when the home is worth $150,000. Also, be prepared for the demands of a project schedule. If you’re going to do a full kitchen restoration, you may be eating take out for several weeks. Think about the electricity being unavailable as work is being done. Consider adding items such as a Generac Generator
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to the budget for power options during the renovation.
DIY and Contractors
Some projects are more DIY-friendly, while others will require the employ of contractors and other professionals. You might be able to handle a refresh to your kitchen, which might amount to repainting cabinets, replacing flooring and buying new appliances. A more complex renovation requiring electrical and plumbing work, or adding to the existing structure usually demands skill and permits. Be realistic about what you can do versus hiring a pro. Do plenty of research and interview contractors to help you finalize the scope and budget.
Home renovations are not for the faint of heart. Careful planning and thorough research minimize the risk of failure. Come up with a reasonable budget. The scope of work should be feasible and realistic in the grand scheme of things. Take inventory of what needs to be done and look for sensible ways to save money by doing it yourself.