GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOTV) – With so many potential remodeling pitfalls, it’s wise to learn from past mistakes of past projects of your own or friends and family. Knowing what NOT to do will help make the most of your time and money and ensure that your project doesn’t end up in a trash heap. To make it easier, here’s a list of the seven most common – and costliest – remodeling mistakes.
RUSHING INTO YOUR PROJECT. Develop a good plan, price it and work it. Think your project through. You should expect several revisions. The final revision should be a project that is well put together, addresses perceivable eventualities and accommodate unforeseen events that always happen in a remodel.
CHOOSING THE FIRST CONTRACTOR YOU INTERVIEW. Take your time, get several bids, check references. Make sure both the contractor AND the company he works for have the proper insurance. Find a contractor that fits your personality and is a good communicator. Make sure the contract has a good breakdown of labor and materials or the flat raite.
CREATING AN UNREALISTIC BUDGET. By “unrealistic” I mean one that doesn’t allow for any “wiggle” room. As a general rule, you should have about 20% more in your budget. This cushion will give you peace of mind when your demo shows old wiring or termites that need to be terminated! On HGTV they call this the Contingency Plan.
BEING OVERLY FRUGAL. “Don’t be a penny-pincher.” And remember, you always get what you pay for. For instance, vinyl flooring is cheaper than ceramic, but not really THAT much cheaper. AND if you choose the right product, that will set your home apart from others in your neighborhood – WITHOUT pricing you out of the market. That also goes for challenging projects. If you’re not a licensed electrician or plumber, hire them to do that part of the project correctly. You don’t want to be responsible for either burning down or flooding your home! Your spouse might be pretty upset about that!
PAYING MORE FOR MATERIAL THAN YOU NEED. This refers to many parts of the project. SO, if you’re not rushed, look for sales and purchase product even before you need it. This also refers to the kind and quality of material. While you may LOVE a quartz countertop, a high-definition laminate can give you the same look, be more within your budget and again, not price your house out of the market if you’re remodeling to resell.
MAKING YOUR HOME CLASH WITH THE NEIGHBORHOOD. You’ll certainly anger your neighbors if you drastically change the façade or add a humongous addition that doesn’t fit with the rest of the neighborhood. That doesn’t mean you can’t make an individual statement, just keep the surrounding homes and neighbors in mind.
CHANGING YOUR MIND A LOT. This can one of the costliest and time consuming mistakes you can make. AND it’s something that usually is influenced by friends or family – who will NOT be living there! It’s a wise idea to walk thru each part of the project with your contractor prior to work beginning. For instance, once a wall has fresh drywall on it is NOT the time to reconsider and think, ”Hum, maybe I don’t really want a wall there after all.” Think BIG $$$$.