A FEW TIPS YOU MUST KNOW BEFORE A HOME RENOVATION
1. Improving the Efficiency of Space Use, Not Only Focus on Expanding
If you could reorganize the kitchen to make the most use out of it, you may not need to remove a wall to occupy more space. For example, you can add a layer in the cabinets for more storage room. “You’re getting three or more planes where you might otherwise get only one,” says Louis Smith Jr., an architect with Meier Group, in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Our research shows that through customizing cabinets, efficiency increases multiple times in the same area. Below is a cost estimation:
- The cost of expanding the kitchen by 200 square feet: $48,000 to $95,000
- The cost of high-efficient, customized cabinets: $35,000
- Saving: Up to $60,000
2. Use Skylights If Possible
A skylight covers the light tube. It is efficient and long-lasting. It costs less to install a light tube than cutting a hole in a wall. And skylights are the best options to bring in light to the hallway and bathroom.
- The cost of adding a double-pane insulated window: $1,500
- The cost to install a light tube: $500
- Saving: $1,000
3. Consider Long-Term Costs, Not Just Short-Term Gains
For example, if you need additional clapboards, it is wiser to choose the prefabricated and pre-painted to save costs in the long run, even though it costs more in the short term. The research shows that pre-painted boards are 10 to 20 cents per square foot more than the regular walls, but they save you a lot of painting costs in the future because the pre-painted boards are more resistant to oxidant, rain, and sun, so you do not need to paint the wall every a few years.
- The cost of 10 by 40 unfinished boards and two painting jobs: $5,500
- The cost of prefab clapboards and one coat of paint: $500
- Saving: $1,250
4. Consult an Architect
It is necessary to consult with a professional before starting a renovation project. Many homeowners may directly consult with the city or ask a contractor for a quote. Neither a contractor nor a homeowner knows in detail about city standards and codes, and the plan may violate some key points. An architect is familiar with local city codes and able to use them properly to maximize the interest if the owner. It is worth to invest in hiring an architect.
5. If the Project Involves Moving the Toilet or Sink, You Should Consider Upgrading the Plumbing
Some homes have a long history. The new owners may think of changing the toilet, sink, or other visible fixtures. Everything on the surface would look like new while the plumbing system is still old that can cause leaking or clogging. You may want to upgrade the overall performance of the home in remodeling instead of only changing the visible parts.
6. Do Not Change Your Mind Easily
Do not have your contractor or interior designer start working unless you have made a concrete decision. It is extremely pricy to change your mind in the middle of a project. From our experience, we had a client that randomly chose a plan without considering the designer’s plans. When the whole set of plans finalized, the owner wanted to make some changes, and the additional designing cost is almost the same as the initial cost, which made it double the price to do the same thing.
- The cost of going by the original plan: $0
- The cost to change your mind in the middle of the project: Varies on the jobs. And it costs more time because of the delay and miscommunication
- Saving: Up to thousands