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A Foot in the Door: Getting Started With Home Renovations

When you’re renovating a property for the first time, it’s not always clear what to expect. In this article, we’ll explore a few of the basics - including the different kinds of renovating, timelines, costs, and professionals you’ll need for a job well done.

Types of Renovation

There are no limits to the ways you can revamp, remodel and renovate a property. Familiarizing yourself with the options, however, can help you to streamline the process.

  • Kitchen/bathroom remodels: Your tiled rooms can often be remodeled to improve functionality, appearances, and home value. Typically, adjustments will involve new faucets, light fixtures, revamped surfaces, improved storage, and sometimes even changes to the room composition itself.

  • Basement conversions: Once you’ve removed the clutter from your basement area, there’s an almost unlimited number of ways it can be modified to give your home a new feature, improve utility and increase property value. Take a look online for ideas on how you can reinvent this space. Ideas include (but are not limited to) home cinemas, minibars, wine cellars, artist studios, and more.

  • Home offices: With the advent of remote working, home offices have grown in popularity and complexity. If you’re inventive, you can often take this working space and expand its function. Many have opted to double this space up as a guest room, for example. Consider investing in a sleeper sofa, purchasing a storage ottoman, adding a full-length mirror, or bringing in extra cabinets to store bedding.

Planning for Renovation

Although simple in theory, renovation is rarely a straightforward process. If you want to keep down costs, complete work on time, and maintain high standards, you’ll need to plan every step.

  • Budget: Outlining a clear budget and calculating in advance how much the renovation work is going to cost will help you to avoid overspending. You should aim to take into consideration materials, licensing, utilities, legal fees, disruption to work, and, most importantly, personnel.

  • Schedule: Creating a schedule for your renovation project is not always simple and can be a point of friction between you and contractors. To begin with, you should aim to use nationally recognized averages to build out estimates that both parties can agree on. When setting these, be sure to consider shipping/delivery times, finishing, and other variables (such as weather).

  • Legality: Understanding potential legal issues in a home renovation project can help you to avoid them down the line. These may include damage to property, zoning disputes, failure to pay, or substandard work. Any of these issues may necessitate the services of a real estate lawyer.

Admin Requirements

With every renovation project, there’s a litany of administrative requirements and paperwork to boot. Getting ahead of this is key, so you don’t become overwhelmed or miss any important points.

  • Warranties: A home warranty can give you coverage in case home systems or appliances break down. This typically takes the form of an annual renewable contract that can cover breakdowns to heating, cooling, electrical, and plumbing systems, as well as appliance repairs.

  • Software: Utilizing technology can help to streamline relations with your contractors. If you’re having electrical work carried out, for example, using electrical contractor software will allow you to make quick and precise estimates. It may also help electrical contractors to manage timelines and invoices.

Home renovations can be complicated, but much of the stress and workings out can be mitigated with some prior planning. Whether you’re designing a home office, repurposing your basement, or giving your kitchen a new sheen, make sure you have warranties, software, and clear budgets/timelines in place before you get started.

Whether you are selling or buying a property in the Los Angeles and Ventura area, Suzi Farajiani is the realtor for you. Learn more about Suzi’s work at:

Article Contribution by Amy Collett

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