Preparing for a Remodel


Any remodel, whether it is a kitchen, bathroom, or even a bedroom, is no small task.  So, it is always good to think ahead, plan, and be prepared for the process. Over the years we have picked up a few tips, tricks, and great ideas from our customers, as well as learned from some struggles along the way. In this post we would like to share all of these things with you to help your remodel go as smoothly as possible. So, here we go!

Get Dreaming!

Gather Your Ideas

Save photos! Pictures can be a great communicator to show and describe exactly what you want in your remodel.  Use magazines, Pinterest, Houzz, or anything you can find on the internet to show and explain what you like, love, or even what you don’t like. Anyone in the remodeling business has certain “terms of the trade,” that may or may not be familiar to you. So, sharing pictures is a great way to make sure everyone is on the same page and understands what you would like your end project to look like.

Prioritize Your Ideas

Take all of those pictures and ideas and put them into categories. The categories we like to you are:
remodel wishlistwhat you wish you could have if money was no object
what you want and are hoping you can have
what you absolutely can’t live without.
Think of it as the needs, wants, and dreams for your space. Later, when it comes down to making a budget and sticking to it, you will already be able to trim out the extra items that aren’t as important to you, or that you could easily add to your project in future years.

Be Real

Keep in mind that your house is not identical to what you see in all of those pictures you are saving—not all of the measurements are EXACTLY the same so some things may not actually work or fit in your space.  Or, they may fit, but they might not have the same look or feel. However, don’t let this discourage you from saving pictures! Every idea needs to start somewhere and your contractor or designer will love using those ideas and photos to help design the final room of your dreams.

Determine Two Budgets—1) Your Ideal Budgetremodel budget

It is important to know what you can realistically afford. Ask yourself: what are you hoping you can complete at a certain price point?  In creating this number try to include all of the pieces to your puzzle — carpenter, electrician, flooring, plumber, appliances, paint, cabinets, handles, curtains, etc. Try to include literally everything you can possibly think of.

Determine Two Budgets—2) Your Worst Case Scenario Budget

Your worst case scenario budget is a number you don’t have to share with anyone, BUT it is always important to save more than you were originally planning, just in case there are surprises that pop up unexpectedly.  From reading other articles, and learning from others’ projects, it seems that 10-20% above your ideal budget is a safe amount to keep on reserve.  However, remember, THIS MONEY IS FOR SURPRISES ONLY! You should not be including this money into your project spending unless something unplanned and unexpected pops up.

 Start Planning!

Meet with Your Contractor/Carpenter

Show them your ideas and explain your hopes and dreams for your space.  Ask for their professional opinion to see if those plans will truly work and fit in your space.  Also, find out exactly what it would take to create your dream space—did you include all of the process in your budget (electrical, plumbing, flooring, fixtures, etc) and covered all your bases?

Brace for Reality

Many shows and tutorials make DIY look easy, when in fact, it can be time consuming and a real mess, especially whenremodel mess you are trying to work, raise kids, and still run your normal daily life routine—whatever that might all include.  After communicating all of your desires to your contractor, step back and let them manage your project for you so you don’t have to handle all of the stress of lining everything up.  You don’t have to be in charge like those tv show hosts.  Let your contractor communicate to all of the other parties involved so you can focus on the important decisions—the look and function you want, without having to worry about measurements, calling plumbers or electricians, or ordering more materials.

Prep for Routine

Things will feel a lot smoother if you are able to function as close to “normal” as possible. The following ideas might help to prevent hold ups in your normal routine.

  1. If remodeling your kitchen, freeze meals ahead of time, find some great crock pot recipes, or start saving coupons for your favorite restaurants.
  2. If remodeling your kitchen, bath, or laundry, offer to cook or clean for a neighbor or friend in exchange for use of their space while yours in under construction.
  3. Try to recreate your space.  This can make a huge difference, though it isn’t always possible.  But, if it is, it can be a big life saver! Think and plan ahead to see if you can recreate your space in another area of your home.  Is your guest bath fully stocked to be used by the whole family?  Can you plug in your stove or fridge in another room or your garage so it can still be used?  Is there a place you can set up tables or make a temporary countertop to hold your microwave, crock pot, or griddle so you can continue to cook some meals?  Do you have a grill that will get you by?

Preparing in some of these ways can help keep life running smoothly and save some headache and frustration while your room is under construction.

Take Pictures

Take pictures of your ” old” space before the remodel gets started!  It will be fun to see just how much your space gets transformed.