You’ve found your first home — the house has good bones and its in a perfect location, but you know it’s going to need some serious renovating before you’re ready to call it your “dream home”. Your offer has been accepted, paperwork signed, and the keys are finally in your possession. Now it’s time to start seriously planning those renovations! We know it can be a bit overwhelming to know where to start, especially for first time Austin homebuyers, so we’ve put together a list of tips to help you tackle the next steps.
Set a Project Budget
Setting a project budget is arguably one of the most important parts of any home renovation planning. Make sure to be realistic about your budget, then consider all of the costs of your renovation plans: materials, contractors, etc. The costs of all of these things should never exceed your budget — if they do then its probably time to revise your plan.
Create a Contingency Fund
Setting a budget is incredibly important, but we suggest also creating a contingency fund to cover the “what if’s”. It’s recommended to set aside at least 10% above the estimate bid to cover any surprises that may come up. You also need to consider that every time you make a change, the costs are extremely likely to increase. Unforeseen things are likely to happen and minds often change, so a contingency fund is very beneficial.
Plan Time to Get Necessary Permits
Certain home renovation projects (such as a new garage, patio or other additions) can actually require obtaining permits. The permit process ranges from a couple of days to several weeks. Often times you need to close on your new home purchase before you can even start the paperwork to obtain these type of permits. It’s important to consider this when planning a big renovation project, and allow yourself enough time to get one before diving in head first.
Find the Right Contractors
It’s important to find the right contractor for every home renovation job that is not DIY material. You want to make sure that hired contractors are comfortable and experienced in executing your home improvement ideas. Ensure contractors are people that you can actually foresee yourself working well with over the duration of your project. Not all contractors are the same, but we know of a great home renovation team if you are looking…
Communicate! Communicate! Communicate!
It’s important to find the right contractors, because you are going to need to communicate with them often. Expect to have meetings with your contractor often and speak up about your needs. Clear communication and expectations are the key to creating your dream home.
Manage Your Expectations
We all love a good home makeover show (us included), but it’s important to remember entire kitchen remodels don’t happen in an hour. It can actually take up to several weeks. A quality and thorough renovation is a time commitment. You should budget your time in the same fashion that you budget your finances when it comes to home renovation projects.
Get an Estimate
Contractors should offer a free estimate. You can get a free estimate from us here when you are ready to make your dream home a reality.