Renovations are an exciting business. You only have to flick through a few TV channels in the evening to see ecstatic couples overhauling their homes. But when it comes down to it, TV programming isn’t always reality, and renovations can present a lot of challenges that you won’t necessarily see on TV.
If you’re considering a renovation, it’s important to plan for the unexpected and to cover all bases to make your project as smooth as possible. Here are some steps you can take to help you to plan a renovation like a professional.
Before you start anything, you need to do your research. If you don’t know what you like, how are you going to start on the design?
A good way to conduct your research is to have a look at websites such as Pinterest and Instagram and create a database of images that you think will suit your home. Also, don’t forget magazines and books, they can be a great way to get an eye for different shapes and colours, and to find themes that work well together.
Don’t rush into an idea. Try sitting on a collection of images that inspire you, and see if you still like them in a month. If you do, then great, it might be a keeper. If not, it might be time to take another look.
Write Up A Brief
Once you know what you want, you need to find a way to communicate these ideas to designers and builders. Try to concisely plan things out and take as many measurements as you can. This will mean that you can expect accurate quotes and in the end, you’ll be happy with the results.
Create A Budget
You’ve probably heard this one before, but don’t underestimate the importance of a budget. After you get a bit of an idea of what you want, you can start to request quotes, and at this stage, you need to figure out a budget.
How much money do you have to spend? You need to make sure that you have the cash for materials, contractors, appliances, walls, flooring and whatever it takes to get the job done. It’s recommended that 10-15% of your budget be set aside for emergencies and just in case situations because you never know what could happen.
Some ways to keep costs down include choosing standardised fittings and materials that tradespeople are familiar with, after all, labour costs tend to take up around a third of the budget. Not only are they easier to work with but they also are easier to replace down the track.
Think About Timing
When it comes to renovations, timing is very important. Think about when you’ll need the room/s that will be under construction. Summer can be a great time to do the kitchen, as you can use an outdoor BBQ while the renovation is underway. However, it’s recommended that you avoid January, as many tradespeople will have lessened availability.
Seasons can also your affect your budget, for example, pools are always going to be expensive during summer, when demand is high, however, you may find discounts in the winter time.
Break Your Project Down Into Manageable Sizes
When it comes to renovations, it’s usually best to focus on one room at a time. If you have a greater vision, work out how you can achieve it over time, and break it down into bite sizes pieces. Try complete one before moving onto the other. This means that you’ll have less of your house out of action at any one time. Smaller sections also means less to go wrong at any one time, and more chance of staying within budget.
Arrange a Building Inspection
Does your project require structural changes? If so, it’s probably a good idea to get a building inspection. You don’t want a contractor to start pulling a wall down, only to find that the house isn’t structurally sound. A building inspection can give you the clear vision needed to plan down to the last detail.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
Not all projects are the same, and although you might think you can pull off a design on your own, it’s usually best to consult a professional. Architects and interior designers will be able to give you a better picture of what is possible. If you’re thinking of renovating a bathroom you might want to consider talking to a plumber, and if there’s electrical work, it’s best to consult an electrician.
If you have any questions about planning renovations or would like to know more about installation or maintenance of electrical items please don’t hesitate to give us a call.
With over 9 years of experience under our belt, we pride ourselves on providing air con and electrical services of the highest quality. Get in touch with us today.