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  • Writer's pictureJustine R

7 Things to Do Before Beginning Your Home Renovation

Home renovations can be an exciting, but intimidating time. Getting the right team and having a solid plan can help alleviate the stress, but if you really want to start with your best foot forward, here are some things to do before you break ground.

1. Check Your Calendar

The estimated timeline you receive from a contractor is not a guarantee. It’s a good idea to leave a healthy buffer of time between when the project is expected to be done and when you need the space to be fully available. Holidays, family gatherings, these shouldn’t be anywhere near your renovation timeline if you plan to spend them in this space.

2. Audit Your Belongings

For insurance purposes this is a no-brainer, but practically speaking an audit is the perfect way to take inventory and prevent things from getting lost. An organized renovation is a stress-free renovation, not just during building, but when you’re putting everything back into place too.

3. Plan for Realistic Temporary Housing

Once again, the timeline discussed will not necessarily be the timeline you find yourself in. It’s important to plan your temporary housing situation accordingly. Can you sleep on a mattress in a different room of the house for that long? Can you stay with family or friends when you’re not sure exactly when you’ll be leaving? Can you afford to stay in a hotel until everything is done? The answer may be a combination of your options, but consider your comfort and your budget before you commit to a temporary housing plan.

4. View This Renovation as an Investment

As a homeowner you know what it was like to be a buyer, and perhaps even once a seller. Even if you have no plans to move, understand how this renovation will impact the value of your home. The last thing you want is to go through another major renovation because you didn’t investigate the market.

5. Kitchen First, Then Everything Else

Everyone knows how inconvenient it can be to lose access to all the everyday amenities we take for granted. But without fail the hardest adjustment has to be when you’re suddenly unable to make and store your own food. For this reason, it’s best to get that part of the project out of the way first. Let’s keep that take-out bill as low as possible.

6. Chose Materials in Person

The internet can be a great resource for exploring options and aesthetics, but the reliability of photographs isn’t perfect. Maybe the finish on that wood looks glossier online than in natural lighting, or maybe the texture of this surface isn’t practical for daily use. Use the internet first if it's helpful, but never sign off on materials you haven’t seen or touched in person first.

7. Ask for References Before Committing to a Team

Your contracting team is the heart of your renovation project. You’ll be working with them for some time, and it’s important you choose people who you can trust and who offer the level of excellence you need. Regardless of whether or not your contractor has photos of past jobs or a stellar resume, you won’t fully understand their communication style or customer service quality until you hear from past clients. Insisting on references will communicate to your contractor that you respect your time and theirs. If all goes well, you’ll get to add yourself to that list of satisfied customers.

At BFL we pride ourselves on our tenant-focused approach, with an emphasis on customer service and satisfaction. Of course, the list above concerns things you do before the actual project gets underway, but having a dedicated team to walk you through these suggestions is never a bad idea. Contact us today with your plans and renovation dreams, and let's get started.

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