Renovations are never easy even for the most organized person. Workman in your home all day and the dust will make a completely sane person crazy. Before you start any home renovation you need to get organized. I call it Organization Renovation.
The first and most important item on my list is to determine your budget. One thing you will hear over and over from sub contractors and contractors “anything can be done but for a price.”
Purge before you begin. If you are renovating a kitchen go through every drawer and cabinet and get rid of unused items you no longer need or want. Only pack up what you will use once you have your brand new kitchen, living room, bedroom or bathroom. If in doubt throw it out.
Make sure you are using reputable contractors and sub contractors. I cannot stress this enough. Check references and talk to other homeowners to find out if they were satisfied with the work they completed for them. You do not want to be three weeks into your renovation and see shoddy work and unreliable workers.
Make a daily list of any questions that may arise for contractors, designers or anyone else involved in the project.
If you are redoing your kitchen and staying in the home make sure you have a make shift kitchen. A coffee pot, toaster, small microwave, disposable paper products and bottles of water. Get take out menus from your favorite restaurants, you will be using them frequently.
Have everything ordered and in before you start tearing it all out. Whether it is a bathroom or a kitchen it will expedite any renovation.
Schedule a cleaning service every week if possible. Once the dust starts it is so hard to get it under control.
Turn off the AC when they are sanding walls and ceilings. Shut and seal vents. Drywall dust is so fine and it will cover your whole house.
Change your air filters weekly. I know that sounds like over kill but it helps with the dust and you will be shocked how dirty they are after a week.
Cover all floors that are not being renovated with heavy tarps. Do not use the thin brown paper it will tear and the floors will get scratched.
Use heavy plastic to cover door openings. It will keep some of the dust and debri to a minimum.
Get a dumpster. They are not attractive sitting in your yard but you will be glad you have it.
Have rules for contractors or subs. If you do not want them to start before 7:30am let them know or they will be show up at 7:00am ready to start and you will be in your bathrobe.
Work with an interior designer/decorator if possible. Everyone needs someone to help them with any project small or large. Picking out colors, hardware, placement of electrical outlets and any other detail you will forget they have extensive knowledge. By week three your husband will be over the whole renovation so do not expect him to help you decide on moldings or cabinet knobs.
Expect that once they start your project they will find problems no one could have anticipated. It is disappointing but that is the reality of a renovation.
If it is possible to go live somewhere else during any renovation….DO IT. Whatever date they give you is usually off by a few weeks due to weather, materials or any other unforeseen problem. Most stress from renovations is due to living in the house.
Yes you have guessed it I have done this a time or two and I have lived to tell about it and I want you to benefit from my experience to make the outcome a more pleasant experience.
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