Home Remodeling Guide: How to Create a Great Home Remodeling Plan

If you've ever considered remodeling your home, but have no idea where to start... we feel you, and we've got you covered.

Remodeling your home can be daunting, but it doesn't have to be if you have the perfect plan in place.

Creating a great home remodeling plan can save you time and money and potential stress and headaches.

Keep reading, and we'll show you how to create that perfect plan.

Track and Study Your Own Living Habits

This might sound a little odd, but dedicate a day to tracking down the time you spend in each room. Map out how you use your house and how you want to use it.

You may notice where the sun rises and where the sun sets and how this affects the lighting in each room throughout the day.

Take note because there is nothing worse than realizing the spot you placed your custom built-in entertainment set-up is the same spot the afternoon sun shines directly onto your TV.

Mapping out your house and how you want to use it allows you to understand where you want to prioritize your budget as well as where you feel you can spend less money like on the rooms you feel you are not going to be in as often as you think you are.

Create a Detailed Home Remodeling Plan

Jumping into a remodeling plan with a vague idea or worse, no plan at all could end up costing you extra time and money. Take some time to sit down and organize your thoughts by outlining your needs and wants of the work you want completed and design inspirations.

Create a master list or a detailed spreadsheet that includes all the steps you need to complete during your remodel. This is where you can easily track your progress and make special notes of what projects need to be completed first before other steps can get started.

This will also prevent you from wasting your time focusing on the wrong steps and assuring everything is done in the proper order.

During this time, you should also figure out which projects you are going to DIY and which projects you are going to hire a pro to do.

Figure Out Your Budget (And Stick to It!)

This budget will include how much you will spend on materials, labor, permits, and decorative touches. When you set the budget for your project, it is important to allow for some wiggle room in case of any unexpected costs.

Examples of unexpected costs would be additional electrical work, surprise structural changes, improper building codes, or bringing your home "up to code."

Incidental costs could include eating out while your kitchen is under renovation, staying at a hotel for a few nights, or the cost of setting up your renovation-free zone.

Padding your budget with a 10% buffer is suggested(other experts suggest even more- up to 25%) because that cash buffer is used more often than not.

What Is Your End Goal?

Figure out what your end goal is for your home before you take on any project.

What are your intentions for remodeling your home? Are you planning to remodel to up the resale value of your home, or do you have long term plans to stay for years to come and possibly pass the property down to your children?

These are important questions to ask yourself when you plan to remodel your home. Let's say you planned to remodel your house with the intention of it being a rental.

This is where you debate over the flooring and might, unfortunately, end up choosing carpet because it is affordable and cheap to get done.

In a rental, the carpet gets dirty very quickly, and you could have potential renters with dust allergies, or worse, pets. Replacing the carpet once will be more expensive than if you just went with the pricier laminate flooring option from the beginning.

Having a specific goal that you can always revert to will help you determine how invested you are in your home, how deep you are willing to go with your project, and what your limitations are.

Consult the Best Local Professionals

There are many horror stories out there when it comes to hiring the wrong contractor. Let's help you avoid experiencing one of those.

For a worry-free experience, you need to do your research. Look for a local company that has great reviews, is upfront about what you can expect, and provides you samples of past work.

A good contractor won't mind you quizzing him about every step of the process or his credentials.

Find the best contractor for the job with the help of Mr. Handyman!

What are the benefits of choosing us?

  • We are trustworthy
  • We are a convenient one-call solution
  • Safe and worry-free experience
  • We are fully insured with general liability and workers' compensation
  • We'll clean up when we're done
  • Our workmanship is guaranteed

Don't believe us? Take a look at our website to learn more about why thousands of residents in the Keller, Flower Mound, and Alliance areas choose Mr. Handyman.

Get Everything In Writing

Insist on a detailed contract that includes everything from your start date, completion date, payment schedules, details of what is going to be done, proof of liability insurance and worker's compensation payments, and specific products and materials to be used.

Wanting a clear contract is not a display of mistrust. It will help clarify both parties' expectations from the beginning and eliminate further confusion or disputes in the future.

Outline Your Home Renovation Timeline

Once you have set your budget, assembled your team, and called in the cavalry, it is time to piece together your timeline.

Begin with your desired start date then assess the order of each part of the remodel you wish to be completed while also allowing for a little wiggle room for the completion date in case of any unexpected issues.

When in doubt, double the amount of time you think the project is going to take, that way you don't feel rushed or pressured. If you finish ahead of schedule, you will feel even better.

Also, remember it is important to consult the calendar when it comes to choosing your start date.

What is the weather like around the time of your desired start date? Angie's List provides an in-depth guide to figuring out when the best time of the year would be to remodel.

The guide factors in things like how the seasons will affect digging conditions and even the cost of labor and materials.

Consider your lifestyle, as well.

Do you have children who could potentially be running around during a home remodeling project planned throughout the summer? Are you okay with loud construction going on during the holidays or special events?

Before committing to any remodeling project, be sure to consider key celebrations first.

Manage Your Expectations

Remodeling your home can be both an exciting and daunting task. In a dream world, everything will go exactly according to your plans and will be done on time and within budget.

The reality is that there will be a few unexpected mishaps and delays along the way, along with the inevitable conveniences of turning your home and sanctum into a construction zone.

Mentally prepare yourself and manage your expectations for all these potential inconveniences so you will know how to keep a cool and calm head and handle them when they arise.

This preparation will save you stress and even prevent you from becoming flustered and potentially overspending on unforeseen costs.

Pack Up and Prepare for Remodeling

Now that the planning process has come to an end, it is time to prepare your space for the remodel. Pack up and put away your items, especially valuable ones, that will be in the renovation zone.

Cover your hardwood flooring with cardboard or sheets of paper and protect the furniture or immovable fixtures, like built-in cabinets, by draping them with plastic or tarps.

If you plan to remodel your entire home, consider looking into renting a storage unit for all your belongings or an onsite storage pod you can have easy access to.

Create a Renovation Free Zone

Designate a spot in the house that is off-limits to everyone but you and your family.

This will be your "Renovation Free Zone."

This will be the central hub for you and your family to gather away from all the renovation chaos. Make sure it is equipped with everything you may need to avoid any back-and-forth to wherever you are temporarily storing your belongings.

If you plan on remodeling your kitchen as well, be sure to create a temporary kitchen to avoid living without one throughout the entire renovation project (which could take days to weeks.)

Include the essentials like a microwave, refrigerator, and a portable stove so you will be able to still make meals at home versus eating out every day and spending more money.

Another spot in the house you should keep renovation-free is at least one bathroom. Make sure this bathroom is NEVER not working (for obvious reasons).

Prioritize Structural Projects First

Structural projects include your foundation, roof, electrical wiring, or plumbing.

It may be tempting to go straight for the kitchen or some other spot in the house you spend your day-to-day life, but you must prioritize completing the structural projects (leaking roof, sinking foundation, termites) first before general cosmetic changes.

Communication Is Key

Make sure you and your contractors are all on the same page. Effective communication is key when it comes to assuring your home remodeling turns out successful.

Contractors aren't mind readers. Sometimes what you envision in your head does not translate well to someone else.

The only way to make your expectations clear is to let your contractor know. Inform him of any specific rules or expectations you have for him and his crew to avoid any future mishaps.

In case of any mishaps or accidents, let the project lead know right away of anything you find unsatisfactory so the issue can be resolved immediately.

Also, exchange phone numbers and emails with your contractor to communicate effectively; having your communication in writing will also clear up any misunderstandings. Note that you may not be your contractor's only client, so respect his time if he does not get back to you right away.

Take Photos of Your Progress

Everyone loves a good before and after photo, but taking photos serves other purposes other than just having a side by side visual comparison. You should take photos throughout the entire process to keep as a personal reference in case you ever plan on doing a home remodeling project like this again.

This also helps keep track of the progress of any contractors you are working with, whether it be for future recommendations or documenting that the work is being up to code and up to your own standards.

A Great Home Remodeling Plan Is the Key to A Successful Renovation

Renovating your home should be more exciting than terrifying. With the perfect plan in place, your chances of having a successful home remodel will increase as well as your chances of headaches and frustration decreasing.

When the time comes you decide you are ready to remodel your home, you can check out our services page or contact our Keller handyman team, and we'll turn your plans into action!