Steps to Take Before Renovating

Just like any other investment or major decision, it can be nerve-wracking to take the plunge into a home renovation. Before you sign on the dotted line with any contractor or designer, it’s important to evaluate every aspect of your future design and building process, to make sure it’s the right decision for you. Here are a few key things to consider before you re-design your home.  

Know the designer. Don’t just judge a designer by their website or social media pages. It’s important to get to know a designer beyond a preliminary level before you sign up with them. Ask about their experience, references, and credentials to get a sense of their previous work.  

Research. One of the trickiest parts of home design is determining the best style and design themes for you. This aspect requires research and patience. Read magazines & books, go online, and sift through the blogs and virtual home tours. Put yourself into these images, and you’ll be able to capture a sensory experience. You need to develop an understanding of what design elements are critical to your lifestyle and how you want your home to operate. Many clients find collage helpful — the pasting and splicing of different images that evoke their dream home vision can make it easier for them to imagine themselves in the new design. Watching HGTV and TLC shows can also provide inspiration, but it’s important to keep in mind that those projects are not always realistic for your time frame and budget.  

Timeline. A thorough and successful renovation takes time. That’s why it’s important to question if a re-design fits into your current life plans. Consider the time it will take to carry out the construction. You don’t want life to take a backseat when you embark upon a renovation. Make sure you have a dedicated project manager, who will act as a liaison between you and the contractors, so that the building process stays on time and on budget.  

Budget. How does this renovation play into your budget, financial timeline, and goals? Make sure that this re-design is a priority investment for your present and future. You’ll need to sit down and consider payment options, and weigh the pros and cons of a bank payment or cash.  

Stick to your priorities. It’s important to stay strong in your design convictions. Doing so requires that you effectively articulate and communicate your wants and needs for your renovation. Staying quiet, or brushing your ideas to the side, won’t allow for a successful re-design. What I’ve learned in my three decades of home design is that strong communication will help you get the most out of your re-design.  

Home renovation can be a challenging process. But taking the time to consider these important elements can make the process much smoother and easier.