How to Tackle Your Dream Home Projects Without Jeopardizing Your Sanity

You’ve planned customized upgrades and renovations to your home. You’ve hired the best certified and verified construction professionals available. Now comes the most challenging part of all – living in the messy chaos of a construction zone day in and day out.

Never fear! We’ve got some great tips to share that can help you get through these trying days of sawdust, clutter and amazing crescendos of drilling and hammering, all with your sanity and eager anticipation still intact.

Pre-Construction Meetings are a Must

I’ve always been amazed by homeowners who can instinctively envision a metamorphous of their outdated living space into their perfect oasis. If you’ve got a wish list of home upgrades and renovations, share it upfront with your general contractor and any subcontractors, architects, designers, etc. They can point out any areas of concern that could hinder your original design, like structural issues, electrical problems, plumbing concerns, etc. Together, you can amend your plans before the hammer meets the first nail.

Also, make sure that everyone is in agreement on budgets. Go ahead and talk about some scenarios that could impact costs, so that your professionals can get an idea of where you’re open to splurging on some things, and where you may choose to save others. Throughout the construction process, all major issues that will impact the budget should be approved by you before any work moves forward.

Plan for Cooking, Showers and Sleeping Elsewhere

The easiest solution to escaping the chaos, dust and noise of a renovation project is to temporarily relocate to a hotel, a rented space or a family member’s home. Or, take a vacation. But when temporarily moving out isn’t a possibility, be ready to relocate the spaces within your home. For example, if you’re renovating your kitchen, you may make your bedroom a makeshift cooking and pantry station with a microwave on your dresser and a portable refrigerator as your nightstand. If you’re renovating your bathroom, you might have to take your shower at the gym or at a friend’s house.

Set Scheduling and Daily Expectations with the Crew

Your general contractors, subcontractors, painters and all other crew will become like your second family. But alas, they are not! Set daily schedules and communicate house rules up front. If possible, provide your crew with a different entryway into the house than the one your family will use. This will help keep the construction mess to a minimum, as well as reduce interruptions to workflow. If you will be away during the times that the crew must come and go, work directly with your main contractor to arrange secure entrance into your home. Do not freely give your keys and alarm codes to the entire crew.

Plastic and Tape Help Control Construction Mess

Before you know it, your furniture, floors, ceiling fans and even air-ducts, will be caked with several inches of drywall dust, insulation, sawdust and more. Do yourself a favor and decorate this home project party with plastic sheets and painter’s tape. You can section off the construction zone from the rest of your house to help keep your other living spaces as comfortable as possible.

In addition to purchasing these essentials, it’s also smart to go ahead and order any products that will require installation, such as appliances, cabinetry, flooring, lights and fixtures. This will help you avoid installation delays due to missing product. Ordering products before construction begins can also afford you some extra time to resolve any unforeseen delivery issues with materials, like broken tiles, a wrong faucet, etc.

Use Paper to Make Your Life Easier

If you’re renovating your kitchen, trading in your everyday plates and glassware for paper goods is a no brainer. But choosing to use paper goods during renovation days, even when you have full access to your kitchen, can still make housecleaning a lot easier, especially if and when the water and/or electricity must be shut off for work. If you find yourself really missing a good meal served on china, consider eating out at one of your favorite restaurants.

Be Flexible and Patient

It’s inevitable that something along the way will possibly delay your timeline and/or change the way you envisioned the final reveal. Some common issues that cause delays or alterations to a project might include receiving damaged product, uncovering code violations, obtaining required permits, adjusting to budget restraints, etc. During these times when you think you might pull your hair out, lose your mind or run away to another state, take a minute to remember why you started the project in the first place. In the end, all of the struggles, mishaps, and even small triumphs, will be worth it!

Check Your Construction Crew’s Cleaning Plan

At the end of a major event or party, the last thing anyone wants to do is cleanup. Now imagine if that event went on for days, weeks or months, and no one was cleaning up along the way. Cleanup would seem impossible. Ask your general contractor about his/her crew’s cleanup plan. They should be cleaning as they go, as well as performing one big sweep and wipe down of their work area at the end of each work day. On the other side of the plastic wall — where you’re tucked away from the home renovation projects — apply the same practice of wiping down furniture and sweeping floors everyday. Even the walls will start to collect inches of construction debris.

While home construction, renovation and new build projects can certainly test our patience, stamina and flexibility, the end results are usually worth it. We hope our home renovation tips can help you navigate through your journey to making your dream home come to life. Before you know it, you’ll be enjoying a brand new living space!

Let us know what major home projects you’re hoping to tackle in 2016. And if you have more tips for managing the chaos, share in the comments below!

If you’d like to tackle some home renovations but are short on cash, contact one of our PrimeLending loan experts who can talk with you about our cash-back mortgage refinancing programs that can help supplement funds now, as well as possibly lower your overall monthly mortgage payments.


from the PrimeLending blog by Mandy Jordan