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  • Writer's pictureMy Handyman of Savannah

How to Avoid Costly Remodeling Mistakes


Image Source: Pexels‍ Remodeling an existing home is a great opportunity to upgrade your living space, add value and increase the resale value. In addition, it’s a great way to take advantage of newer construction techniques without the cost and challenge of building from scratch. Unfortunately, many remodels fail to achieve their potential because homeowners make costly mistakes with their plans. The average cost of a failed remodel is $35,000. To avoid these mistakes and get the most out of your remodel, you’ll need to be intentional about every decision you make. If you’re planning on tackling a major renovation project soon, you’ll want to read this article before getting started. We will cover everything you need to know about remodeling before diving into any blueprints or permits. Let’s get started! Be Clear on Your Goals Before you do anything else, you need to be clear on your goals. What is the purpose of this remodel? Why are you doing this? These are fundamental questions that need to be answered before you purchase a single stud or buy a single tool. The answers will determine the design, location, materials and functionality of your remodel. If you’re not sure where to start, start by asking yourself two simple questions. First, why do you want to remodel your home? And second, what do you want your remodel to achieve? The answers to these questions will help you stay focused as you navigate the process of remodeling. Determining the Renovation Scope The construction scope of your remodel is the best predictor of the cost, schedule and final outcome. Unfortunately, the construction scope is not always the first thing that people consider when planning a remodel. Instead, homeowners are often consumed with design and aesthetics. Although design is important, it should come after you’ve nailed down the construction scope. Because the construction scope determines the outcome of your remodel, it needs to be your first priority. If you have trouble determining the scope, here are a few questions that can help. First, why do you want to remodel your home? Having a clear answer to this question will help you determine the best path forward. For example, you may want to remodel your home to accommodate a growing family. Or you may want to remodel your home to accommodate an aging parent. Your reasons for remodeling will help you determine the scope of your remodel. Second, what do you want your remodel to achieve? What do you want your remodel to achieve? Why do you want to do a remodel at all? What problem are you trying to solve with the remodel? What do you want your home to look like? These questions will help you determine the scope of your remodel. For example, if you are remodeling to accommodate a growing family, you will likely need a larger kitchen and more bedrooms. If you are remodeling to accommodate an aging parent, you will likely need modifications to the living space to make it easier to navigate. Again, the answers to these questions will help you determine the construction scope of your remodel. Estimate & Plan for Materials & Labor Costs Before you sign a single contract, you should have a general idea of the total materials and labor costs of your remodel. You should have a general idea of how much you will spend on materials and labor before you select contractors or start construction. Unfortunately, many homeowners fail to consider these costs up front. They simply dive into the design process without considering the financial implications. This is a major mistake because it will hinder your ability to make smart decisions when it comes time to sign the contracts. The materials you select and the way you construct your remodel will affect the total cost of the project. To get a general idea of the total cost of your remodel, you’ll need to know the following. - What are your goals? - What are your reasons for doing the remodel? - What exactly do you want to achieve? - What type of materials do you want to use? - How will the materials affect the cost of the remodel? - How will the type of labor affect the cost of the remodel? Plan for Renovation Disruption The cost of your remodel doesn’t just include the total price of construction materials and labor. It also includes the cost of living in the midst of the construction process. To get a realistic idea of the total cost of your remodel, you’ll need to factor in the disruption that comes with a remodel. The best way to estimate the disruption cost is to look at a few examples. Take a look at some popular remodels, then calculate the cost of disruption for your project. Because every project is different, there are no exact costs for disruption. But you can get a general idea of the costs that come with remodeling by looking at a few examples. Identify your Renovation “Must-Haves” and “Nice-To-Haves” Now that you have a basic idea of the total cost of your remodel, you can start making decisions. The first thing you should do is create a list of “must-haves” and “nice-to-haves”. This will help you identify your design priorities. Once you know what your design priorities are, you can start eliminating designs and options. This will help you focus on the things that matter while eliminating everything else. A must-have is a design feature or amenity that you will absolutely include in your remodel. It’s something that you cannot do without. A nice-to-have is something you would like to have, but it’s not absolutely necessary for the remodel. It’s something you can live without if it doesn’t fit into your budget. Choose your Construction Method Carefully The construction method you use to build your home will have a major impact on the final outcome. The construction method you choose will affect the aesthetics, functionality, livability and resale potential of your home. To get the most out of your remodel, you’ll want to choose your construction method carefully. While it might seem like there are many construction methods to choose from, there are really only a few to choose from. To make the best decision, you’ll need to carefully consider the following. - What are the aesthetics of each construction method? - What are the functionality of each construction method? - What are the livability of each construction method? - What is the resale potential of each construction method? Bottom line The cost of your remodel will depend on the design, materials and construction method you use. It’s important to choose each of these things carefully to get the most out of your remodel. To get the most out of your remodel, you’ll need to be intentional about everything you do. You’ll need to consider the cost, construction method, aesthetics, functionality, livability and resale potential of each option before making a decision. When you do this, you’ll be able to avoid costly remodeling mistakes and get the most out of your home.

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