Mistakes Home Remodeling Newbies Should Avoid

So, you’re thinking about renovating your home. You’ve secured the necessary finances and you’re ready to dive into your remodeling plans. Congratulations! But, with your leap into renovation station may come some angst, understandably.

RemodelWerks understands the nervousness many homeowners often feel when they begin to plan for a major home renovation, whether it’s to add an updated kitchen, a serene master bedroom retreat or a sprawling basement playland that’s perfect for entertaining or just chilling out. But, we believe that by following some of the tips we’ve got outlined below, any anxiety you may feel about your home remodel will disappear as in as little time as it takes for you to say, “Remodel Werks: Tear down that wall!”

First, take a look at whether your remodeling plans could mean undoing a recent update you may have made. Take windows, for example. Say you installed energy efficient replacement windows last year and now you’re thinking about adding an addition that will require the removal of the existing wall, and with it the windows! That’s a case where you would be throwing good money out the window, pun intended.

That said, when making minor updates to your home ahead of a major remodel, think: If I remodel the house in a couple of years, will the contractor have to disturb the feature I’ve just added? If that’s the case, it’s probably better to wait on that minor update, like window replacement, door installation, etc. until it’s time for the major remodel.

Next, don’t jump into a remodeling project until you are sure you’ve got the finances, whether through savings or a low-interest home improvement loan, to comfortably cover the expense. Reputable contractors will do everything in their power to stay on budget, but often times, especially in older homes, circumstances may arise that require you to go a bit beyond the planned budget. As a rule of thumb, sock away an additional 5 to 10 percent of the pre-planned budget, just in case any remodeling surprises are uncovered during demolition.

Third, and back to “tearing down that wall,” don’t embark on a tear until a design plan has been finalized, the necessary permits have been secured, and you’ve hired a licensed professional to get to work (and also not before getting the terms of your home improvement contract in writing). Here, at RemodelWerks, our lead carpenters have successfully passed the Massachusetts Building Codes “Construction Supervisors License,” which demonstrates the lawfully required building practices as defined by Massachusetts Law. Also, to become a NARI-Certified Lead Carpenter (LC), the LC must have a minimum of five years of hands-on remodeling experience and must be trained in safety and professional handling of materials and installing building products—and RemodelWerks has got that, too!

Next, pay attention to how the remodeling updates you plan on making will likely affect the resale value of your home. You don’t want to get in a situation where you’ve overimproved your home to a point where you won’t recoup the average or above average return on your remodeling investment. RemodelWerks works with clients on all types of budget who live in all sorts of homes, and our design/build team will help educate you on the types of updates that can give you the most bang for your remodeling bucks!

And, finally—this may go without saying, but we can’t stress it enough: Stay involved in the process! This is your remodel, not your contractor’s! Sure, it’s acceptable to leave minor decisions to the design/build team, but stay looped in whenever possible. For example, often when a room has been gutted, a new design idea could emerge. Slight variations on the original design may reap great rewards! Also, it’s important that any questions you have about the remodeling timeline or particular projects are answered to your satisfaction. If a contractor doesn’t pay attention to your questions or concerns, that could pose a problem. One great way to find out if a contractor is receptive to a homeowner’s ideas and to their questions or concerns that arise during the remodeling process is to interview the remodeling company’s past clients. Also, check out testimonials to get a better sense of how a contractor may perform. RemodelWerks has got many testimonials from satisfied clients across Central Massachusetts and the greater Boston area, and we urge you to check those out when considering us for your home improvement and building needs.

If you, as a remodeling newbie, have any particular questions or concerns about the home improvement process, we also urge you to contact us today for your free, no-obligation consultation (and for even more insight on this topic, check out our recent blog post on what makes a remodeling project a success). We are the premier custom design/build firm of Central Massachusetts offering a wide array of exterior home remodeling services, including roofing, siding, doors, decks and windows. Our team is also available for custom home building projects as well as extensive interior remodeling projects, such as kitchen renovations, bathroom remodels, basement and attic finishing, and more.

Also, regularly check out our blog for more remodeling and custom-home building insight, and to follow us on Houzz, Pinterest, Twitter, You Tube and Facebook. Plus, right now, like us on Facebook and you’ll automatically be entered into a drawing to win a stay in Boston or one night and dinner!