At Modern Homes Leamington, we live and breathe home renovation.
Our experience in home renovation projects is what sets us apart. We know how stressful these projects can be without support, and how easily things go wrong. From delayed deliveries to unforeseen structural issues, there are always going to be hiccups along the way. It’s important that you’re prepared for any problems that may crop up, so you know exactly how to deal with them. In today’s blog, we’ve put together a list of the most common renovation mistakes, so you know exactly what to avoid.
Rushing to get started
We know how exciting home renovations can be and if you’re anything like us, you’ll want to get the paintbrushes out, plasterers in, and bathroom ripped out straight away. If you’ve moved into a new house, take some time before you turn your home into a building site. Spend a little while getting used to the layout and use this time to work out exactly what you like and don’t like. Identify which rooms you gravitate towards the most and where the coldest and warmest areas are. This extra time will help you make sensible decisions based on practicality rather than just aesthetics.
Neglecting natural light
It’s difficult to know where the natural light comes from when you’re viewing an overcrowded house full of furniture or looking at floor plans. Natural lighting can really shape a room. Get to know how the rooms feel during different times of the day before making final decisions on layout, colour, and décor. For example, you’ll most likely want your living room or kitchen to be the lightest room in the house. Meanwhile, rooms like snugs, cloakrooms, bathrooms, and guest rooms can occupy the darker, cosier areas of your home.
Focusing on too many rooms at once
If you’re working to a budget or have tight timeline, concentrate on the most used rooms in the house first. Doing little bits here and there will only lead to frustration and overwhelm. Nobody wants to end up with an array of unfinished rooms. We suggest focusing on the highest footfall areas first, such as the kitchen or bathroom, and then moving onto bedrooms and other areas when you can.
Not having a plan
Not having a proper plan can lead to unnecessary stress. It’s so important that you have a well thought out plan that you can share with your designer and contractor. We all change our minds, but it’s important that you’ve come to a final decision before any structural or intricate work is done. Revising the plan and making changes is likely to up the cost and lead to delays.
Going with the cheapest quote
Unfortunately we see this one all too often. Please don’t choose your designer or builder without carrying out extensive research first. Always ask for quotes and don’t be afraid to request references and case studies. Don’t ever base your selection on cost alone. Communication is key when it comes to renovation projects too, so you need to feel comfortable and confident enough with your chosen builder.
Running out of time
You should never underestimate the time it takes to renovate or remodel your home. It’s important that you set out realistic expectations and communicate with your contractors before the job begins. Make sure you all know who is doing what and when and add in buffers to cover any delays, additional materials, and unforeseen issues that may prop up.
Cutting professional corners
Depending on the type of renovation your planning, you may need to consult several specialists which come at extra costs. In addition to a builder or contractor, you may need to contact architects, structural engineers and planning permission officers to sign off some work. You’ll need to do your research and make sure to ask questions rather than guess. Listed buildings and properties in conservations will need special permissions too.
Most home insurance policies will offer cover for minor DIY and some project work. Many won’t cover you for major renovations or structural changes. To ensure you’re covered should disaster strike, check your policy cover before you begin any work and if necessary, purchase any additional cover. You may need to arrange for extended protection if you intend on leaving your home unoccupied whilst work is being carried out too.
Not thinking about lighting
When planning your renovation, don’t forget to factor in arrangements for lighting and electrics, such as kitchen worktops, islands, bedrooms, hallways, dark corners, etc. Your electrician needs to ensure that all wiring is in place and may need to do this part way through the project rather than at the end.
Knocking down structural walls without seeking advice
If you’re planning on knocking down any structural walls, it’s important to remember that most of them have a purpose. Not seeking expert advice could leave you with a costly repair or worst case an unsafe home. Get in touch with a structural engineer or builder to identify which are load-bearing and which may contain pipes and wires that need moving first.
Forgetting to allocate enough storage could leave you with an overcluttered and unpractical home. Design your new layout to maximise every inch of your space and meet your exact storage needs. If you’re looking at innovative storage solutions, investing in bespoke and built-in may be the only option. Factor this into your renovation plan.
Ignoring the environment
Consider the environmental footprint of your house before you renovate. Are there eco-friendly appliances you could incorporate into your design, such as an energy-efficient dishwasher that uses less water? We recently wrote a blog on the most expensive appliances to run. Ensuring your home is well insulated is very important too, especially if you’re extending the home as you don’t want any draft.
Above all, it’s important that you enjoy the process of transforming your home the best you can. If you need any help planning your home renovation project, get in touch with the Modern Homes team today. We’d love to be a part of your transformation.