4 Renovation Mistakes Homebuyers Make

Did you find a low-cost property that can be greatly improved through renovation? Before you think of buying the property and heading off to a renovator to fix the house, you may want to learn more about some common mistakes property buyers make when thinking about renovation.

1. Taking the Project Cost Lightly

A lot of new buyers looking to restore old houses have no idea how huge the expenditure will get. So they start off nonchalantly and get anxious a month later when the cost has far exceeded their initial crude estimate. This is what happens when new property investors do not consult an expert prior to buying the property.

In some unfortunate cases, someone falls for a good-looking house and decides to buy it without having it inspected for damage. The result is a frustrating huge renovation bill. Those who are planning to renovate an old house and sell it should bear in mind the sheer importance of assessment and precise renovation cost estimate.

2. Wrong Renovation Choices

What you think looks good isn’t always profitable. For instance, some buyers replace old doors with bi-fold doors, which cost double than French doors. Bi-fold doors may look great, but from a real estate market point of view, such a choice adds little value, if anything, to the house. Lavishly improving a property isn’t always a profitable option. You have to consider the market value of houses surrounding it. You may be dissuading potential buyers if you make luxurious remodeling to your house and raise its value double than the average value of properties in the area. Modest renovation and remodeling choices are usually great for resale purposes. Adding extra space for living is also one of the best ways to increase a property’s value. Smart additions such as a high quality granny flat can add lots of value to an existing property.

3. Doing it Yourself

You brought the tools, the materials, and some of your friends. Now you initiate tearing down the interior paint. Wait! Are you skilled in home renovation? Do you know how to do it properly without damaging your house?

You know it’s okay to tear down your house and rebuild only to realize 3 days into the task you can’t do it. Improperly trained people doing renovation job can ruin a house and squander the materials. DIY home repair and remodeling sometimes lead to expensive repercussions. If you don’t have experience and skill, please call a contractor. Don’t overestimate your abilities at the expense of your investment.

4. Passing All Responsibility to the Builder/Renovator

Just because you’re paying a company to handle the project doesn’t mean you can leave for a month-long vacation and expect everything to be perfect when you return. By doing this, you are giving the contractor full freedom in making judgments, which removes your decision from the equation. What if you return and you don’t like the new design of your living room?
Monitor the project every once in a while. Be in constant communication with the builder or contractor so that you know the development of the project.


Home Renovation Reality Check

There are a lot of things you need to know about home renovations, and much of what you know is often wrong. Home repairs and remodeling look good on magazines and websites, but they really hide the intimidating and often crucial aspects.

Set Realistic Cost Expectations

It is easy to be lured by contractors who promise to transform your house for $30,000. What exactly will that transformation entail? Homeowners unaware of exact home renovation cost can fall a victim to bad builder ads and going broke with only half the job finished.

Before you start, have an exact cost estimate of the project. Contact a reliable builder to help you with precise computations based on changes you want to make. If your budget falls short of the estimated cost of renovation, you can make adjustments on materials or limit renovation only to a specific area of the house to reduce cost.

It’s very important that you do your research before starting with the project. Don’t start tearing down your walls without adequate budget plan. Many homeowners get too excited with renovation and start immediately without a solid plan and estimate. This leads to disastrous and embarrassing results. Limited budget calls for sacrifices that shouldn’t hurt. If a complete house makeover doesn’t seem to fit the budget, then start with the bathroom or the kitchen. Who said you have to renovate your house all at once?


Expect Household Inconvenience

Unfortunately, real-life home renovation is so much different from what you see on TV shows, which make it look too easy. Depending on the type renovation you wish to embark on, the job can last for weeks or months. From the time you seek city permit to build to seeing the final results, it will take a lot of time. The renovation itself can drag for weeks and limit your movement in your house. Some homeowners rent another house, a granny flat, or apartment while they get their home improvements done. This can be a bit difficult. So plan ahead. Make contingency plans. You may not be able to use the bathroom or kitchen for a while. You may have to move the furniture around.

Assess Your DIY Skills

Small Granny Flat Home Renovations PlanJust because you can repair the stairs or replace the faucet doesn’t mean you can handle home renovation on your own. Just because you’re a guy doesn’t mean you can take on carpentry job. It has nothing to do with your biceps but has to do with your skill. You may be able to carry lumber or glass panes. Do you have the skills to structure them right?

Underestimating the difficulty of the task can lead to sloppy renovation that leads to weak structures prone to premature damage. Unskilled people doing home repairs may be doing more harm than help. Please hire a licensed builder if you know you’re incapable of handling the job. And please hire a good one!


Keeping Yourself Safe during Home Renovation

Accidents can happen during home renovation, and some of these accidents can be life threatening. What many contractors and even clients of construction works don’t know is that the hazards don’t always involve falling debris. Health hazards include inhalation of mold spores or asbestos fibers. How do you keep yourself safe?

How old is your home? Old houses pose greater risk during renovation than new houses. This is because old houses have weaker structures due to age and may be infested with pests. Also, old houses are more likely to have serious mold problems. All areas of the house have different dangers when performing renovations. The roof areas obviously have height risks involved and when performing Sydney bathroom renovations there’s the risk of cuts from showerscreen glass and ceramic tiling.

A Beautifully Renovated HomeHow long has the house been unoccupied? Houses that have been left unoccupied for a long time have hazard caused by loss of maintenance. These houses pose a lot of hazards to you and the home renovators. If no one has maintained the house for a long time, it may have water damage, extensive mold contamination, and pests.

Many renovators are careful not to just tear down walls or touch the plumbing. You, too, should be careful when entering an old house or a house that has been unoccupied for years. There could be a host of health hazards in there.

  • Dust. You may seem too tough for dust, but even a bit of dust can contain millions of allergens and fungal spores. Take precautions if you are prone to allergies.
  • Lead in old wall paints. Old houses, particularly ones built more than 60 years ago, may have lead paints. Paint manufacturers don’t use lead anymore because of its adverse health effects.
  • Asbestos. Be careful before touching plumbing in very old houses. Old pipes contain not only lead but also asbestos, a toxic compound.
  • Mold. Is there any leaking water? Is there any part of the house that is damp? Mold thrives in warm moist places. Water leaks in old houses mean a very bad mold problem that needs remediation before renovation, unless you want to scatter toxic mold spores in air. Moldy rooms smell musty. Leave the room if you smell something funny, and call a mold inspector.

Wearing Protective Gear

Whether you are tearing down old walls or supervising workers in doing so, you must wear the following:

protective caps – goggles – facial masks – suits – gloves – safety boots. If presence of asbestos is suspected, wearing of a breathing apparatus is necessary. Asbestos dust, mold spores, and other airborne particles dislodged during demolition should not be allowed to escape the room. Hence, it is important to seal the room or the entire house to keep these agents from contaminating adjacent rooms and the area surrounding the house. Then, the area should be cleaned and decontaminated.

Keep children away from the construction or renovation area.


How to Choose the Right Home Renovation Contractor

Architectural PlansThe first thing you need to do after you have decided to renovate your house is to find a contractor. Finding a contractor, a builder, or a remodeler is easy as long as you know who to trust. You need the right people working on the job. After all, you are spending generously to make your home look better. You cannot risk hard-earned money to unreliable renovation services.

There are many ways to sift through a pool of building contractors in town and narrow down your search to those with good track record. You can ask a building inspector to give a list of contractors or builders that adhere to the building code. Look for certifications and licenses. A contractor should be a licensed engineer or an architect. Don’t hire someone who can’t show a license even if they show you their design drafts.

Look for experience. You’re better off trusting people who have in the industry for a long while. It means consumers trust them; otherwise, they wouldn’t last long in the business. It also means they know what most people like and don’t like. So you can actually ask for tips on design, especially if you have no eye for art.

Searches for good licensed luxury home builders usually happen on the internet, occasionally on phone directories. The good thing is that many home renovation service providers now have websites where they market themselves. You can look for a builder in your town.

• See if they handle home renovation projects. Most builders include renovation and smaller projects like bathroom or kitchen remodeling to their services.

• Are they affiliated with suppliers? Do they have in-house architects, engineers, and interior designers? Do they have in-house laborers or do they contract other company that provides manual labor?
Comparing price quotes among contractors should be your basic task. Take note that the company that offers the cheapest services isn’t always the best option. Sometimes cheap service means cheap service.
Other factors should be considered.

• Ask for a list of their previous clients. A home renovation company should be confident enough to be able to refer you to their previous clientele.

• Read reviews about them online. Don’t just rely on client feedback on their website. See if there are complaints from their previous clients.
When you have narrowed down your search to a few contractors, interview each of them on the phone. See how they or their representatives treat you over the phone.

• Are they polite? Do they answer your questions adequately?

• Can they give an honest estimate of how much the renovation project would cost? Can they provide an estimated duration for the project?

No proper answers, no transaction.


10 Ways to Mess Up Your Home Renovation

Giving your house a fresh new look is both an exciting and daunting venture. But with major projects like home renovation, it’s virtually easy to make mistakes and end up spending more and wrecking your home.

Going too cheap. Okay, you’re on a budget. That’s understandable. But just because budget’s tight doesn’t mean you can go with cheap materials. This is the wrong way to save, because eventually you get what you pay for a cheap house.

Haphazard measurements. Precise measurements are crucial to the success of any building work, whether home construction or renovation. Even an error of an inch can ruin the design. Measuring the dimensions of the area is imperative in the inception of the project.

No plan. Some people remodel their kitchen out of their whim and they end up with a mess they don’t know how to fix. So they call a licensed renovator instead. This practice breaks the bank. If you have no solid renovation or remodeling plan, do not start tearing down anything in your house.

A Couple RenovatingBathroom too small or crowded. The size of the individual rooms in your house depends on the size of your whole house. If you have a small house, then it’s only logical that your rooms are smaller. The good thing is you don’t have to spend a lot on furniture. In the case of a small bathroom, limit fixtures. Choose low toilets and smaller sinks.

Bad lighting. Lights complement your design. Choosing the wrong lights for your indoor theme can ruin the design. Also, the color of the lights affects indoor mood and ambiance. You want your house to feel warm and cozy, not cold and stark.

Falling for the fads. What’s trendy this year will no longer be trendy in two years. You don’t want to change your indoor design every two years, unless you have money to burn and you can live the inconvenience of renovation. Designs that will look good despite passage of trends are recommended.

No home life adjustment plan. This creates annoyance. If you’re repairing your kitchen, expect that the kitchen will be out of service for a few days. Where do you plan to cook food? Major home renovations may mean you have to move out of the house temporarily. Prepare for these undesirable aspects.
Wrong paint. Your favorite color is orange, but unfortunately it looks ugly on the walls against your furniture and drapes.

Funny looking windows. Wow at the window designs you saw at a shop. Unfortunately, they don’t look great against your walls when you finally installed them.

Ignoring safety precautions. So you’re some tough guy who thinks he can walk into a room of debris, because stepping on some sharp tool or getting hit by falling rubble is a matter of statistical probability and you should be lucky. Ask a builder how many times they have injured themselves at work.