The real estate market is a tricky business. Ever since the recession in 2008, both buyers and sellers have struggled to get the best deals available. However, things are slowly improving, and home buyers are a little less hesitant to take the plunge and purchase a home, and they recognize a great value when they see it.
If you’re looking to sell your home in the next few years, one of the best things you can do to raise your property value is to perform renovations. Whether you’re fixing up a single room or gutting an entire floor, renovations are known for paying for themselves in the long run.
However, if you enter a renovation unprepared, it’s very possible that you could walk away spending far more than necessary, potentially eliminating your ROI. To avoid this, there are a few things worth looking into before beginning a full-scale renovation.
1. It’s All About the Budget
No matter what grand schemes you have to turn your home into an incredible getaway, it all comes back to the budget. You can change your designs, but you won’t be able to stretch your budget any further. When the money’s gone, it’s gone.
That’s why it’s important to plan your renovations around your budget rather than planning your budget around the renovations. Begin by designating a dollar amount and speak with a contractor about how much it will cost to do the renovations. Also, you’ll want to include a contingency budget, just in case you discover problems as you go. Most contractors recommend a minimum of 20 percent extra for unexpected costs.
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2. DIY or Hire a Contractor?
Some people have all the skills necessary to complete the renovations by themselves. Others will trust a contractor to do it for them. Whoever is doing the work, it’s important that they have the skills, tools, and the proper knowledge of building ordinances to get the job done correctly.
If you’re doing the work yourself, make sure you’re up to date with the latest methods. Gather your tools, and do some research on your city building ordinances to ensure that you build to code. Also, don’t be afraid to ask a contractor for help on the things you don’t feel confident with.
If you decide to hire a contractor, screen potentials carefully. Too many contractors will be more invested in the paycheck than doing a great job. It’s best to find a contractor through word of mouth. Check for online reviews or ask around town to find a great contractor that will work with you and your plans.
3. Research Before You Design
Get a great design that’s most functional for your home by doing thorough research. Begin by studying the blueprints of your home. Open concept main floors are popular, but not all homes can simply knock out a wall without facing structural issues. By studying the blueprints, you and your contractor can determine exactly what design will work for your home.
Furthermore, do some research to explore all of your options. Popular designs are always changing, and there are thousands of elements you may want to add to your home. However, you won’t know until you’ve looked through magazines, talked to others who’ve done renovations, and read more online resources.
4. Ask for Advice
Don’t be afraid to ask for advice. A renovation is a lot to take on by yourself. Before you begin, compile a list of experts you can contact in case you run into any problems along the way. Share your plans with them and ask if they have any general advice before you get started. A little friendly counsel can save you from an entirely avoidable negative experience down the road.
5. Don’t Leave with Regrets
Make sure that you have everything you want in your home before you build it. It will be extremely difficult, and maybe even impossible, to make any changes once the renovation has been designed, paid for, and installed. Furthermore, don’t second guess your decisions. Just make them and move on.
The most important thing about a renovation is to keep the end goal in mind. A major renovation could be the most stressful experience of your life. However, it becomes much easier to enjoy the journey and keep your eye on the prize if you’re prepared ahead of time.