Everything goes better when you have a plan. Unfortunately, far too many people go into a home renovation without one. This is fraught with folly as there are far too many unpredictable variables with which to contend. These six home renovation errors could cost you big time.
- Engaging the First Contractor You Meet
Yes, we understand you’re anxious to get the project going, but if this is your first time, you should talk to several different contractors to be sure the information you’re getting is valid. Further, before you settle upon someone, get references, view some of their past projects and talk to homeowners who have worked with them in the past. Consult the local Better Business Bureau to find out if they’ve had complaints lodged against them and always run background checks.
- Overlooking Permits
In most cases, you will need to secure building permits to do major work legally. Inspections are part of the permitting process to ensure the work is up to code. Ignoring this risks fires and other calamities if the work is completed in a haphazard fashion. If work is done without a permit, you could also be forced to take it apart for inspection (and you’ll have to pay fines).
- Using Builder Grade Materials
True, you can reduce costs significantly by choosing lower-cost builder grade materials. While the term might lead you to believe they’re high quality, the category only meets minimum standards, so you could be sacrificing the long-term durability of your project. In fact, this can actually wind up costing you more. After all, if something fails down the line, when you repair it with a better grade of materials, you’ll pay for the renovation twice.
- Underinsuring Your Property
Committing any one of the above home renovation errors could cost you big time. In a similar fashion, failing to reevaluate your insurance coverage when the renovations are complete could leave your newly refurbished home inadequately insured. Getting a free homeowners insurance quote can save you a lot of money, and it can make sure your property has the protection it needs.
If you’re 6’7” and place your kitchen cabinets at your eye level, you’ll run into problems when you try to sell the house. When conducting renovations, it’s always a good idea to keep things as neutral as possible for broader appeal when it’s time to move on. Similarly, you want to avoid going too trendy with your décor. Timeless elegance always beats hip and edgy updates when it comes to home renovations.
- Focusing Only on Esthetics
Ignoring water damage, structural damage, bad wiring and old pipes when you’re conducting renovations will eventually come back to haunt you. So many people get caught up in the look of the finished project they ignore the fundamentals. But if the bones of the home are less than solid, it will come to light sooner or later and all the work will have been for naught—if you’re lucky. If you’re not lucky, failure of one (or more) of those ignored systems could turn into a major repair bill.
Working within these guidelines will help you avoid the six home renovation errors that could cost you big time. The main thing to remember here is cutting corners can also slash your financial stability down the road. Yes, there are areas in which you can economize to good effect, but skimping on permits, materials and failing to investigate the credentials of your contractor are all choices fraught with peril. When it comes to home renovations, the path of least resistance is often a dead-end street.