If you have been inspired by the recent popularity of a renovation and home improvement shows on television, then you are in the right place.
Many reality shows on television make home renovation look like a walk in the park, leading to a pot of gold of the end of the rainbow. However, home improvement and renovation have hidden costs that TV shows conveniently fail to tell you about. In this blog, we reveal some of the pitfalls that are usually left on the cutting room floor at the television studio.
More often than not, when you turn on the television, you will find at least one “reality show” having something to do with renovation or home improvement. These shows usually make home renovation look fun and exciting, and almost easy. Unfortunately, in the real world, home renovations are much tougher than they look, on your back and on your bank account.
If you are thinking seriously of renovating or improving your home, we sincerely recommend that you ponder the following questions and tips.
One of the things you don’t get to see on a TV show is the hours of planning that usually goes into any successful home improvement or renovation project. Before you begin a project, it is imperative that you know exactly how much money you can afford to spend. You also need to know which rooms you are going to renovate, how long the project will take, and who will be helping you with the project.
The bottom line here is that you need to know exactly what you’re getting into before you start, and exactly how much time and effort will be involved.
The first and most important thing you can do to ensure a smooth and successful renovation is to create a realistic budget before you start. The second most important thing that you must do is stick to the budget no matter what.
Your budget has to include everything: cost of materials, cost of labor, and any additional expenses such as licenses or pest control. After you have allowed for everything you can possibly think of, add a minimum of 5% for unexpected expenses.
If you have formulated your budget correctly, it will provide you with a framework in which to prioritise work and materials, gauge the overall scope of your project, and ensure a successful home renovation.
One last budget tip: don’t overspend for cosmetic touches that don’t ultimately add value to your house. In other words, spend every dollar wisely, and make sure that you will profit from every dollar you spend down the road.
Choose your projects wisely
Television shows have what amounts to unlimited budgets when renovating a home. While their budgets have limitations, those limitations are usually closer to what it would cost to build a new home from scratch than they are to a realistic renovation budget. While it might look like a lot of fun, down to every wall in your house and start over, the reality is that your renovation budget will not allow you to do so.
Consequently, you will have to prioritise which rooms need renovation in order of importance. Once you have prioritised these rooms, it will be easy for you to stay within a budget. If the project will cost too much for your budget, simply start eliminating the rooms at the bottom of the list until you are within budget.
Our recommendation: the kitchen, bathrooms, and bedrooms will impact the value of your property more than the other rooms in your house. Therefore, it is wise to put those rooms at the top of your priority list.
A helpful tip: always shop for the best ratio of quality to price. Decide on the quality you want, and then find the least expensive option to provide you with that quality. Whether it’s materials or labor, it is well worth the extra time you will spend, because it will produce dividends down the road.