Preparing Your Home For A Renovation, Before it Begins - A Handy Checklist
Embarking on a remodeling journey can be an exciting time, however, you will most likely run into a few challenges, many of which will be out of your control. Embracing the disruption and mess is all part of the process. There are, however, a few steps you can take to help it all go more smoothly, and it all comes down to planning ahead. To help, we’ve created this checklist of how to prepare your home for the renovation project before it begins.
Take Photographs -
Before you do anything, take a series of “before” photos. Even if only for your own personal record, you will want to compare the transformation once the renovation is complete. It’s also possible others may need to refer back to your home’s original condition, including your contractor, your insurance agent, the local assessor, etc.
Take an Inventory of Your Belongings -
Falling into the category of things we should do but most people don’t, is making a list of your valuable assets for insurance purposes. Now is the perfect time to take care of this. Take an inventory of your belongings and their worth.
Use Up Existing Inventory –
Are you remodeling your kitchen and have a freezer and pantry full of food? Try to use up as much of it as possible…before the remodel is scheduled to begin. No one wants to throw away a fridge full of food, due to a lack of proper storage. Now is the time to get creative with recipes and food preparation.
Purge the Unwanted -
Before you pack up items for storage, go through and get rid of things you no longer use or won't be needing after the renovation. By dealing with these items now you will significantly reduce the time you spend unpacking and organizing your new space when the renovation is complete. Make three piles, donate, recycle, trash, and make sure items get to their final destination before the real packing begins.
Start Packing -
Now that you have gotten the extra stuff out of the way, everything in the renovation area will need to be packed, labeled, and stored out of the way so contractors can do their job safely and efficiently. If you have extra space in your home….a guest bedroom, an area in your basement, or your garage, you can keep your items on-site. Discuss this in advance with your contractor to make sure your items will not be in their way. It is essential to keep a clear path to the work area. You might also consider a portable storage pod or mini storage facility if you don’t have enough room inside your home. Additionally, you may want some temporary storage space for any items that are being delivered to your home during the remodel, like appliances, cabinetry, flooring, and more. Another thing to consider is removing any pictures or valuable items hanging on the walls near the construction area, as vibrations may cause these items to get bumped off the wall.
Be Prepared For Dust -
A reputable builder will do their best to contain the construction dust by covering the floors in the walkway and installing a temporary Visqueen plastic barrier at the door openings however, it’s inevitable that dust will make its way through to other areas of the home. Consider storing items you want to protect and covering other items with drop cloths or plastic. Attach plastic sheets to the front of open shelves to keep the dust from piling up. Keep doors to other rooms shut and roll up any area rugs and store them elsewhere. You may also want to consider dusting and vacuuming daily after the crew has left for the day.
Should You Stay or Should You Go? -
Depending on the scope of your remodel, you may want to make temporary living arrangements. This could include staying with family or friends or renting a temporary living space. Online tools like VRBO or Airbnb are great for finding short-term rentals. Be sure to plan ahead and budget for these expenses.
Talk To Your Neighbors -
If you live in an area with close neighbors, consider giving them a heads-up about your upcoming home renovation. Let them know when it should be starting, how long it is expected to take, the hours during which the work is expected to be done, and any heavy equipment that may be on-site during the remodeling project. A little communication will go a long way in preventing misunderstandings or complaints from your neighbors.
Make Yourself Available -
Throughout the process, it is important to maintain open lines of communication with your contractor. This includes discussing any changes or concerns that arise during the project and keeping track of progress and timelines.
While this list may seem a bit overwhelming, the most important thing is to plan ahead and allow yourself plenty of time to tackle these tasks. It is not unrealistic to start planning 90 days ahead of the start date. It takes time to sort, purge and pack, and store items. Finding alternative living arrangements may also take some time. The other important thing to remember is that there will be dust and debris, and you will have to make adjustments to your daily routine and patterns. Mentally preparing yourself for these disruptions is all part of the process. It also means you are getting closer to the vision you have for your newly remodeled home. Once the dust has cleared and you are opening the door to your updated home, it will all be worth it.
Portside Builders has close to 50 years of experience in home remodeling and additions. Our team will not only help you bring your remodel vision to life but will guide you through the entire process, and will do their best to make your experience as stress-free and enjoyable as possible.
Learn more about the PortSide remodeling process here.