A Newbie Guide to Home Expansions and Renovations

If you have been bitten by the renovation bug from the TV shows or YouTube videos you watch, you know that renovation is a monster on its own. Unlike small craft projects, improvements rarely stay on budget or follow your deadline. It is best to be prepared for mistakes and push through.

There is no such thing as too much research

Home expansions and renovations are a popular choice by those who are not content with what they already have. They are willing to put in their sweat equity to bump “content” to “love”. The first step in any renovation is research. Read up on your local building codes and regulations, are you even allowed to expand? Look for the company/team you want to bring in for the project. Research the ways you can achieve your goal. Check out the materials you want to use for your build. Look for alternatives that best fit your vision; a cheap, quick fix or a slightly expensive option that will pay for itself.

Each renovation project will have its pitfalls. Check out videos and blog posts that have a similar plan and read up on their experience. After you are armed with your research, consult a professional for quotes and proposals.

Keep track of everything from receipts to project progress

An ambitious renovation or expansion requires a lot of people coming in and out. Maintaining clear communication lines will be a struggle. A slight distraction when giving orders, remembering the wrong measurements for a separate area, and missing the assigned schedule can set you back weeks of work. Make sure any vital instruction is visible for everyone to consult. Remind each other of the not common aspects of your build to keep everyone on the plan.

You should also keep a record of your expenses. Renovations might be prone to unexpected costs, especially when you unearth mistakes, or find a former patch job. Water damage, rotting wood, and subpar work can throw a monkey wrench into your plans. Keeping a record (as detailed as you can make it) could help you assess the way you want to proceed.

Look for alternatives, not only for when they are necessary

The “necessary” alternatives come in with materials. When your project goes over budget, a more straightforward style or cheaper material can make all the difference to staying on plan. However, it is not just limited to that. You could look at alternate ways to create a garage expansion, workshop, or sunroom. Instead of working from scratch with timber frames, you could find insulated panels from http://www.sipsecopanels.co.uk. Don’t only look at what conventionally works but seek out better ways that will still have the same result.

There is a tension between being cautious and being creative. Being too cautious may lead to an overpriced renovation. Or, in the worst case scenario, may kill the project before it even starts. Being too creative can also lead to an overpriced improvement by not being grounded. It could also create systems (plumbing, electric, and gas) that work poorly or not at all. Once you have the renovation bug, just start.

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