Home renovation guide: Tips to avoid getting duped when renovating your first place
Congratulations on crossing another milestone in life – getting your first home! But amidst all the excitement you are probably feeling jittery about the home renovation process. Fret not.
In this guide, we will share some insider tips to avoid getting duped for your first home renovation project. Choosing your ideal contractor or interior designer, the theme, getting a loan and more, we got you covered
TAKE TIME TO PLAN YOUR RENOVATION
Start planning your renovation the moment you get the floor plan, and not till you get your keys. Because with more time on hand, you’ll be able to ask around, meet different interior design companies and compare offers carefully. Since you’ll likely be spending a 5-digit sum for your first home renovation project, never rush into making a decision!
CONSIDER AN INTERIOR DESIGN THEME THAT SUITS YOUR LIFESTYLE
We understand that almost every new homeowner wants the interior design of their home to be as up to date as possible. However, don’t try to incorporate too many trends into your home. It is essential to consider an interior design theme that fits your budget and lifestyle instead of following trends blindly. Do choose a pragmatic style that suits your needs, or even increase the value of your property should you rent or sell your home in the future.
CHOOSE THE RIGHT CONTRACTOR OR INTERIOR DESIGNER
In case you didn’t know, hiring an interior designer (ID) typically costs more than a contractor. Why? Because an ID is really a project manager, who will oversee the entire renovation project from ideation to completion. On the other hand, a contractor is a person who can carry out your specific requests.
How to choose the right loan for your 2019 home renovation project
When you own a property, there will inevitably come a point when it needs an upgrade. If you have enough money to cover the costs, that’s great! But for many, a loan is likely to be the best route to take. That’s why we’ve asked Phillip Garlick, Head of Commercial at H&T, to explain what you need to consider if you’re looking to take out a loan to renovate your home in 2019.
If you’re thinking about taking out a loan to complete some renovation projects on your property, there’s some key information you’ll need to know. Not all loans are the same. Lenders often offer a wide array of options for term length, interest rates, charges, and fees. As with anything, finding the best deal comes down to comparing various lenders and products.
What to look for
Every lender is different, and each one will be willing to offer you different terms. That’s why it’s important you take your time and compare each of the various offers available to get an idea of which one might be the best. Broadly, there are three main areas you want to consider when assessing which loan is right for you: the amount of money you will borrow, the interest rate, and the terms of the loan. The best way to choose is to compare the three criteria below across lenders and products, and then apply it to your needs.
The amount of money you will be allowed to borrow is based on a number of factors, but lenders will typically offer you a minimum and a maximum loan amount they are prepared to lend. Some lenders might require a certain minimum income that must be met to get accepted for a specific loan, while others will want to see proof you can afford it. If you aren’t accepted, it is wise to seek a lower loan amount or consider asking a close relative to be a guarantor.
Lenders are required to provide you with an annual percentage rate (APR), which combines the standard interest rate on the loan with all other costs of borrowing, such as fees and charges, allowing you to determine the overall cost of the loan to you. The rate you are offered will vary from lender to lender but you will generally pick the loan with the lowest APR
Home Remodeling & Renovation Ideas
Whether you’re looking to increase the property value of your home ahead of a sale or closing on a house you can’t wait to make your own, chances are there’s a renovation or remodeling project in your future. Which means you’ll have a lot of things to consider, not least among them how to find a contractor, how to mitigate costs, and, no less important, how to translate your Pinterest ideas into reality. AD is here to help. We tapped some of our most trusted renovation sources and combed our archives to bring you this compendium of power home remodeling ideas for every room, including tried-and-true advice from the experts, checklists to help you get started, and stunning before-and-after kitchen, bath, and living room transformations for inspiration. So whether you’re revamping a space to make it more functional or simply more beautiful, this handy guide is your one-stop shop for all things home renovation
Kitchen Design Inspiration
Whether your goal is a multifunctional, family-friendly kitchen or a sleek, contemporary one, there’s something here for you
Bedroom Design Inspiration
Sweet dreams are made of these. Here, pro tips and trusted decorating sources to help you achieve the coziest of sleeping spaces
Patio and Outdoor Space Design Inspiration
From creative seating ideas to inviting landscaping arrangements, these magazine-worthy suggestions will turn a boring backyard into everyone’s favorite hangout
Living Room Design Inspiration
Read on to transform your family room or den into a stylish gathering space with comfort to space
How to Pick a Good Home Renovation Company
Picking the right renovation contractor for the job is essential; they will be responsible for helping to control your budget, and providing you with the product that you are paying for. You also need a contractor that is insured, because any damage that is caused to your home could end up costing you thousands of dollars in repair expenses otherwise. Whether you’re just doing a renovation to one room of the home, or you’re giving the entire house a makeover, you’ll need to work with a contractor that you can trust. As a new homeowner, where do you begin the search? The answer is usually with the advice of others.
If you know someone in the area who has had work done to their home, whether they are a family member, friend, or co-worker, then they might be the right place to start your search. You can ask them about what type of work they needed, how much it cost them total, and how long the job took to complete. You can also ask them about the quality of the work. In some cases, you’ll be invited to go to the home to inspect it for yourself. This can inform you of what to expect from the contractor, should you decide to choose one based on a reference. It can also give you valuable information to use during a contractor estimate comparison.
Make it Official
The contractor you choose for renovations needs to be insured, as previously mentioned, but they also need to be licensed. Your city should have a Contractors Licensing Board, where you can check up on credentials of a contractor that you’re interested in working with. There should be proof of certification, along with Liability Insurance proof. Contractors that don’t have these aren’t worth the risk.
Finally, estimates are an important part of finding the right contractor. They will tell you the cost, the time frame for the project, and what the contractor will actually be able to do. If you hire a specialist for the renovation task you need, such as a contractor that specializes in window treatments, you can sometimes get both a better price and better service than if you could a more generalized contractor. Go over all of your options carefully with your budget in mind, and you’ll have no trouble finding the right contractor for the job
Tips for Choosing a Remodeling Contractor
Type “remodeling contractor” into Google, and you’ll be presented with the sites of hundreds of contracting firms in your area, each one claiming to be the best. With so many choices to sift through, choosing the right contractor for your home improvement project is no small task. But making this decision is as important as it is challenging, since the success of your interior remodel will be in the hands of the contractor you choose
Take the time to interview each candidate. This one’s a given. Just as you’d carefully interview a babysitter for your kids or a personal assistant for your business, you should take the time to discuss your prospective contractor’s experience, work philosophy, and vision. In the initial interview, you should ask your contractor to provide you with a portfolio and list of previous clients and projects
Examine portfolios closely. Your contractor’s portfolio should have plenty of examples of projects in your area that are similar to your own. A contractor with experience in your type of home improvement project will be able to mastermind a remodel that accommodates your needs, complies with local building codes, and anticipate any complications that might arise
Call up references and visit projects in person. While reviewing their resume is a good way to get an initial idea of your prospective contractor’s work and areas of expertise, the only way to truly get a feel for their craftsmanship and skill level is to visit their project in person. Ask your contractor to provide at least three verifiable references to past clients with projects similar to yours. Contact these references, and ask if you can do a walk-through of the remodeled area
Ask about permitting. Whether you are installing outlets, knocking down a wall, or remodeling a bathroom, the vast majority of home improvement projects will require a permit. Your contractor should take care of the process of obtaining a permit for you, from drawing up permit-ready plans to submitting the necessary documents. Beware of contractors who try to convince you that you don’t need a permit—this is often a red flag that he or she is trying to cut corners.