Every year, homeowners waste billions of dollars on home renovations, mainly because they choose to go the home renovation DIY route. While opting to do it yourself can potentially save you costs, you can lose so much more when you don’t have the expertise and experience required to pull off the job and end up making a mess of everything.
Additionally, you could make so many more mistakes when doing a home renovation, most of which will cost you time, money, effort, and leave you with a disaster on your hands. What kind of mistakes are we referring to? If you’re thinking of investing in any type of renovation, you need to read this information before you commence.
We have compiled a comprehensive guide on all the mistakes you should avoid and what you should do instead. Read on to learn more about these pitfalls.
One of the greatest mistakes you can make during a home remodeling project is miscalculating your budget and underestimating costs. You’d be surprised at the number of homeowners that underestimate costs, usually by thousands of dollars, and end up with a disaster on their hands. Most homeowners struggle with the estimation, and on average, underestimate projects by about 46%.
One of the major pitfalls is failing to account for labor costs, which can usually be over a third of the total costs. Labor shortage also drives up the costs of renovation materials, which means you may be in way over your head if you have miscalculated. This could leave you with an unfinished project or a disappointment in your hands with no money to fix it.
Before you start any kind of renovation project, you need to understand that it will cost you more and take much longer than you expect. As a rule of thumb, add 20% of what you feel the project will cost, and if you can’t afford it, cut the job back. It’s a lot better for you to meet these projections and end up with happy surprises.
Expecting the Home Renovation To Go Smoothly
Home renovations, much like building projects, rarely go smoothly or according to plan. This is especially the case if you’re renovating an older building because you have no idea what to expect. New construction is usually more controlled, but with renovations, you don’t know what you’ll find behind the wall you open up.
Even with a well-controlled team and careful planning, it’s imperative for you to have a contingency plan to avoid frustration and unnecessary stress. Prepare yourself for anything, even for the worst-case scenario.
Forgetting to Check the Local Building Laws and Regulations
It may seem unnecessary for you to check out the local building rules and regulations for a renovation project, but it’s necessary. Check whether you require planning permission, building regulation approval, to notify your neighbors, or to notify leaseholders and get permission from certain people. Keep in mind that altering listed buildings without consent is considered a criminal offense, and failure to get building regulation approvals means you’ll have to prove compliance, and you may have to undo completed work.
Blowing Your Budget on Unnecessary Stuff
While shopping for your renovation materials, last-minute and past purchases end up ruining your budget. The same goes for last-minute design changes, especially after the contractor has already accepted your quote. Even with a contingency sum, try to avoid purchasing unnecessary but expensive frivolous things or paying for unnecessary work.
Make sure there’s sufficient communication between you and your team. Even the smallest of changes can turn into expensive disputes. Before your project commences, factor in all the details, including the smallest things like light switches. Get home renovation advice from professionals to avoid making uninformed decisions.
Hiring the Cheapest Builders
This is arguably one of the biggest home renovation pitfalls you could fall into and one of the top renovations mistakes to avoid at all costs. The kind of builder you hire will ultimately make or break your project. It should not be the cheapest one you find or the first one you come across, for that matter.
It may be hard for you to find a builder that will take on the renovation project at a reasonable price. Still, you can be sure the cheapest one will end up costing you much more.
Either they’ll come in and do shoddy work, or they’ll have hidden costs that you won’t have accounted for. If they make mistakes halfway through the project, you’ll need to rehire someone else to finish it, a move that will end up costing you more money and time.
Using the Wrong Materials
Even with the best home renovation ideas, your projects will not end up what you expect them to be if you purchased the wrong materials. Depending on how old your home is, you need to choose materials that are compatible with what the property was originally built with. These include things like renders, plasters, mortars, and the like.
Ignoring the Area’s Price Ceiling
During a home renovation, a lot of people get so carried away with trends that they forget to check the area’s price ceiling. Every neighborhood or area has a price ceiling that dictates how much potential buyers would be willing to pay for a property. This is regardless of how lavish of a kitchen you renovate or how many amenities you have on your property.
The quality of the renovation you make needs to be geared towards the expectations and demands of the market the property and the neighborhood will appeal to. You may think having the best house on the worst street is a good thing, but it can be a disappointment.
It’s a common lapse of judgment, and if you intend to sell your property in the future, you’ll have a hard time doing it. Even if you do manage to sell it, it may not recover the kind of cost you put into the renovations.
Making Unsafe Alterations
During a home renovation, you may have to make structural alterations. For example, removing columns, lintels, chimney breasts, or load-bearing walls to make it work.
However, avoid making alterations that could lead to a disaster. A disaster is not when your building will collapse, but such major moves can lead to building movement.
The movement will ultimately lead to other problems like warped floors, stuck windows, and doors, or partially collapsed walls. This is one of the major reasons why you should have an experienced builder. They’ll help you identify what components of the structure can be removed and how they can be compensated for.
Home Renovation Mistakes to Avoid
If you are planning a home renovation project, now you’re well aware of all the pitfalls you should avoid. A lot of these home renovation mistakes can end up costing you a lot of money, time, and effort. Make sure you plan accordingly, hire the right builder, have a contingency budget, and buy the right materials for the job.
Did you find the article informative? Would you like to learn more about homes and other projects you may be undertaking? If so, please check out our blog because we have so much more prepared just for you.