No one should have to reinvent the wheel, and no one should have to go through the same mistakes made by others if you can learn from them instead. There are some huge pitfalls surrounding home improvement projects that you can avoid if you can prevent making these big mistakes.
Not Accounting for All the Costs
Without making a careful budget, understanding the full costs, and acquiring enough funding, you can get yourself in a real bind. Generally, home renovation contractors will bill you in installments. This is often 50% before starting, and 50% halfway through. If you can’t pay that second installment, your contractor will be unable to finish the work, leaving you with an unfinished project and a big mess on your hands. You could also find yourself in court for the price of materials and other expenses already accrued. Make sure you understand the full cost down to every last nail and each drop of glue. If you don’t have the cash on hand to fund your project, you will need to acquire a home improvement loan or draw from your home equity. Funding should be in place before you start.
Tackling Everything Themselves
Trying to do everything yourself usually just creates a mess that will cost more time and money to fix. DIY renovations take time and skills that many homeowners don’t have. Unless you have extensive training, don’t attempt any major renovations yourself. Hire a professional for anything structural, electrical, plumbing related, and for anything requiring special skill and/or equipment. It is nearly impossible to do these types of projects safely or correctly on your own. When not done correctly, you could have major structural issues, water damage, or fire hazards on your hands. When you hire a certified, insured professional, you can rest easy knowing that the work will be done right and that any mishaps will be covered.
Not Choosing a Contractor Carefully
It would be nice if everyone were trustworthy. Most are, but because of the few bad apples, it is important to do your due diligence when it comes to hiring a contractor. Look at reviews, check with the Better Business Bureau, and ask around for recommendations. Once you have narrowed down your search, have two or three contractors out to offer you a quote. Ask for referrals and actually call them. Find out if they did professional work, if they were pleasant to work with, and if there were any major concerns.
When you know the pitfalls of home renovation, you can more easily avoid them. Keep these points in mind as you consider the future of your home. If you are well-planned and make smart choices, your remodel should be smooth sailing!
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