Are you ready for a change? Maybe you just need some fresh, invigorating colors in your house, or maybe you need to do some renovation out of necessity as your house begins to show its age.
Whatever your motivation for wanting to redesign your home, it’s an exciting yet daunting task. Dreaming up your plans is the easy part. Finalizing them and setting a realistic budget, and then seeing the renovation through to completion, is much more difficult.
Set yourself up for success by keeping these tips in mind:
Dream Big, But Then Get Realistic
Let yourself dream big at the very start. Write down a list of everything you would love to change about your house if money and time weren’t holding you back. Better yet, sketch out your dream home.
You need to allow yourself to dream big so that you consider all possibilities. However, you’ll have to bring yourself back down to Earth and get realistic. Evaluate each of the things you wrote down. What will give your home the greatest resale value? What will be most expensive to do? What would make an immediate difference in how you use your home?
For example, you may wish to add new windows or even a skylight to a room that is otherwise very dark. While this is an expensive project, it also would add some good resale value to your home. Weigh these pros and cons carefully. If you plan to sell your home in the next ten years or so, resale value is more important than if you plan to stay in this home until retirement.
Remember that little things can add up over time to create a big change in your home. Set aside some money each month for a new, small addition or change. Something as simple as replacing the hardware on your kitchen cabinets can make a big difference in giving the room a whole new feel.
With Your Revised List, Make Concrete Plans
Let’s say you really want to address your kitchen’s lighting problems; it’s too dark and dreary, and you prefer a kitchen that is bright and cheerful. How will you make that happen?
You decide you want to add a skylight, as well as accent lights over the sink and stove and under the counters. You also want to remove the main overhead light and add recessed lights that distribute lights over a greater area.
Knowing what you want is half the battle. Now it’s time to get very, very specific. Without specifics, you will hesitate to accomplish this project due to a lingering sense of confusion about what to do next.
Go online or to a local specialty store and browse at all of their options. Choose a design that captivates you. Write down the names of all the fixtures you want to buy.
Next, figure out whether you are capable of doing the work yourself or if you need to hire a professional contractor. In our example scenario, it’s probably wise to hire a professional. Anything electrical is best left to someone who knows what they’re doing, and cutting a hole in your roof for a skylight is something you definitely want done right the first time around.
Ask around for recommendations. Do your research and get a list of people or companies with good reputations. Have them give you an estimate, and then make a decision. Take your time and find someone you feel comfortable with, but keep asking and researching until you find that someone.
Make a Timeline
Your home redesign project won’t get done unless you make it a priority. If you are chronically busy, you may need to mark it on your calendar: on such-and-such day, you will be working on home projects. Keep yourself accountable by inviting someone over to work on it with you, or by scheduling a contractor to come around that day to start the work. If it means you have to take a day off of work, then maybe that’s what it will take to get this done.
If you have multiple projects in mind, figure out which ones need to be done first. For example, should you paint the walls before you install a new mirror in the bathroom? That is probably wise. If there’s no logical order to your to-do list, then assign each project its own completion date. This will help you stay on track.
Planning and fulfilling home redesign goals doesn’t have to take years. You can get things done much faster, but you’ll need to hold yourself to a steady pace. Invite your parents to visit a few months from now, and make that your motivation to get everything done on time.