Whether you are looking to increase your home’s value or simply upgrade the look of your space, remodeling your home can be quite the challenge. The process of deciding on a design, hiring contractors, and financing the entire project can be stressful for any homeowner. But if you’re looking to sell your home and working on a time crunch as well, you may run into a whole new array of problems.
Before you begin your remodeling project, take the time to assess how exactly you can make this experience as comfortable as possible. Luckily, there are a few tips for easing the difficulty of remodeling your home on time and on budget.
1. Develop a Clear Vision
Before starting any part of the remodeling process, you should take ample time to create a clear vision for your project. If you are looking to increase your home’s value in hopes of one day selling it, start by conducting market research on what similar homes in price and style are offering as features and amenities.
Look for common trends like open floor plans, large pools, and outdoor living spaces, and smart home technology. This will help to give you a better idea of what buyers are finding in properties similar to yours and how you can prepare your home to sell quickly at a high price.
This established plan will also come in handy when communicating your ideas to contractors. Not only would it be difficult for contractors to execute your plan effectively without clear direction, but it would likely lead to more mistakes; costing you more time and money, as well. To avoid this, set up multiple meetings with your contractor and remodeling team to ensure that everyone is aligned.
2. Create a Budget
While you may be ambitious in your ideas of the outcome of your project, it is still important to nail down a budget from the beginning. Based on the vision you created, you may have wanted to include top-quality marble countertops and entirely new appliances.
However, after creating your budget and evaluating material costs, you’ll likely realize areas where you will have to cut back. While this isn’t ideal, it is better than purchasing materials based on your vision and realizing you’ve gone too far over budget.
If you’re planning a remodel for your entire house, however, it may be a good idea to explore financing options. You may be able to secure financing through a personal or home equity loan. Or, if you’re planning to sell your home in the next 5 years, you may want to consider a no-closing-cost refinance to save funds immediately for use on your remodeling project.
3. Establish a Schedule
Aside from your budget, developing a timeline is important, especially when you’re trying to sell your home relatively soon. Make a list of everything that needs to happen in the project from the demolition process to adding finishing accents and trims.
Connect with your contractor to gain a full understanding of how long each task will take. And after receiving estimates, plan to be flexible with your timeline! While this, in theory, sounds like it will take more time to provide extra days or weeks for the project to be completed, it will cause you a lot less stress in the long run.
It will also allow the contractor’s team to work comfortably within the flexible timeline as opposed to producing low quality work that may have to be done all over again.
4. Ask Questions
While it is common for homeowners to rely completely on the contracting company’s expertise for what needs to get done and at what cost, do not be afraid to ask questions! After working for years in their particular field, there may be certain assumptions that contractors make based on past projects.
Similarly, there are likely terms that you don’t understand and questions that you don’t even know to ask. That is why it is important for you as the homeowner to take initiative and ask about everything they can think of — especially when it comes to undiscussed fees.
Taking this extra step can save you from unnecessary charges and untimely mistakes. Plus, it doesn’t hurt to develop a transparent relationship with your contractor in case future projects arise.
5. Get Organized
A very important step in maintaining efficiency throughout the project is to remain organized. As a homeowner, you should be aware of all materials and furniture pieces purchased and where they will go to your house. You may even want to keep a spreadsheet with all product information, pictures, prices, and arrival status of your materials to ensure that everything is running smoothly.
Keep this spreadsheet handy so you can confirm that you received the right products prior to installation. This is where many home remodeling projects struggle with lost time. By taking this extra step to confirm each item before it is fully built or installed, you can save hours and even days off of your final timeline.
In addition to remaining organized personally, it may be helpful to provide some organization for the contractors, as well. Keep in mind that they may not be as particular in design and appearance as you are, so it may be easier to take the extra step to label fragile items or indicate where certain pieces should go.
6. Help Where You Can
While the thought of contributing to your home remodeling project may scare you, do not be afraid to jump in where you can. Many people underestimate the impact of DIY projects and savings on simple paint jobs. However, this can save you hundreds of dollars in the long-run.
Even if you aren’t necessarily the DIY-type, you can opt for picking up materials and furniture pieces to help eliminate material delivery costs. Making small sacrifices like this can help to shave the cost of your remodeling project down a little each day.
7. Reward Contractors
Lastly, if you are really working on a limited schedule, a great idea for boosting the contractor’s work and drive to finish a project on time is to provide bonuses where you can. This can be for quality work and/or work finished early or on time. Doing this will encourage workers to continue to stick to the schedule and find happiness in doing so.
While this, of course, requires extra spending on your part, it may be ideal to set aside bonus money in your budget so that the spending doesn’t come as a surprise to you. In the end, a quality project completed in your ideal timeframe may be more valuable than the amount spent on incentives.
If your contractor is, in fact, producing quality work, this is a great way to showcase your gratitude and build a lasting relationship.
Remodeling your home doesn’t have to be daunting — even if you’re working on a limited schedule and budget. Going the extra mile and trying these quick tips can help to save you money while remaining in your expected time frame. Whether you are selling your house or remodeling for your own benefit, take heart that the final outcome will make the tedious process worth it.