Each year, hundreds of homeowners fall victim to one of the biggest hurdles in existence—a task so large, time-consuming, and stressful, that they don’t make it out in one piece. Okay, so maybe this is a bit of an exaggeration. We’re just talking about home renovations. But still, many people take on a remodeling project before they fully understand the work it requires. If you’re determined to turn your current dwelling into the ultimate abode, read this article for everything you need to know about prepping for a home renovation!
Set a Budget You Can Afford
A proper budget will be crucial to a smooth renovation process. The last thing you want is to find out your bank account is in the red before the work is complete (unless you enjoy living in a drafty, unfinished home).
You’ll want to begin the process of budgeting before breaking any ground. A good renovation budget will incorporate at least three basic elements:
- Cost of materials
- Hourly labor wage
- Storage rentals (for furniture and other large belongings)
For a more thorough budget, you’ll also want to keep smaller purchases in mind. For example, what food will you eat when your kitchen is being renovated? Takeout every night can rack up a larger bill than you may think. Start with your largest expenses and work your way down to make sure everything is accounted for.
Determine Your Financing Plan
Once you know how much you’re spending, you’ll want to determine where this money will come from. Many homeowners start a savings account if they know a remodel is in their future—but what about other options? Loans and mortgages can be utilized for renovating purposes as well:
- Second mortgage – Taking out a second mortgage is a common way for people to finance their remodels. Usually, you’ll need a pretty high credit score, which can make it a bit harder for some homeowners to qualify.
- VA Loan – If you’re a veteran or active military member, you may qualify for a VA streamline refinance These loans come with low interest rates and longer repayment periods, making them a great option for vets who want to improve their home for the foreseeable future.
- Cash-out refinancing – Many homeowners opt for cash-out refinancing when remodeling their homes. This process involves adding to your current mortgage and withdrawing the difference in cash. This can be a great option for those looking to sell their home following a remodel (since the profit will help pay the loan back quickly).
Have a Getaway Plan
You may think staying in your work-in-progress home sounds manageable, but you’ll quickly realize it’s no walk in the park when you can’t even walk from your living room to the kitchen.
Living amongst a home renovation is sort of like snacking on the uncooked ingredients of a meal. All the pieces are there… but it’s just not good. In order to maintain your sanity during this hectic time, you’ll want to craft a getaway plan for when you simply can’t look at another exposed beam:
- Rent a home – Some people choose to stay in a short-term rental while their dream home is constructed. This route can be pricey, but it’s definitely going to be the least stressful option.
- Stay with loved ones – Shacking up with a close friend or family member can be an option for those in the midst of home renovations. Just make sure you’re welcome, because this may take a while!
- Renovate in pieces – If you’re adamant about staying put during this process, you’ll want to break up your renovation into manageable chunks. Limiting the work to one room at a time will ensure your home remains livable while being remodeled.
Find Reputable Help
You may have heard horror stories of half-finished renovations left by contractors who ran off. When choosing the right help for the job, it’s important to keep the following factors in mind:
- Find a contractor who is local
- Read multiple reviews
- Ask friends and colleagues for recommendations
If you’re leaving your home in the hands of a stranger, try your best to make them less of a stranger before they start tearing up your floorboards and making holes in your drywall!
You’ve Got This
Don’t let renovation stressors leave you feeling regretful. With a little strength, a moderate amount of prep work, and a whole lot of patience, you’ll get through this in one piece. When things become frustrating, just return to your happy place: the dream home you’re currently building!