Step 1: Break Down Your Goal
Do you want your home to be more functional? More stylish? More modern? Figuring out your desired outcome will help you figure out what rooms to start with, and what kind of designer you’re looking for.
One common starting point is to look for areas of your home that are greatly in need of a refresh. It could be old paint or wallpaper, subpar heating, old plumbing that needs to be replaced, or anything else that sticks out when you walk in the room. If you don’t like to look at it, chances are that it would be a good candidate for a remodeling project.
You can also find good renovation ideas by identifying spaces that are under-utilized. Is there an area that no one sits in? A cabinet that no one can reach? Make a note of them and take pictures and measurements. In a remodeling consultation, you can go over those spaces with your designer and talk about ways to improve them.
No matter what, though, your designer is going to want to see photos of your current space and know the rough dimensions of the area, so take some time to note those down now.
Step 2: Evaluate Your Timeline
Got guests coming to visit, or a big vacation coming up? Even if your goal is to remodel your entire house, checking in with your schedule will point you towards which area it’d be best to start with.
Some cosmetic renovations can be done quickly, in as much as a few weeks. This would be projects like repainting interiors, installing new appliances or countertops, or getting a basic flooring replacement.
However, bigger remodels can take anywhere from six months to a year to complete. These would be things like a full kitchen remodel, additions to the home, and foundation and structural repair.
If you’re looking to renovate your whole house but don’t have a lot of time, you can always break the renovation into several stages. There’s no right answer as to where to start, but a good rule of thumb is to start with your highest priority room. That way, if you run out of steam at the end for more projects, you’ll still be happy with your big improvement.
When working on a full-home remodel with a professional team, though, they’ll give you a good sense of what needs to happen first. Keep in mind that oftentimes projects will need to go from inside out – after all, you can’t install a new sink without first getting the plumbing in order.
Step 3: Give Your Home Renovation a Budget
How major will your home renovation be? Ultimately, it all comes down to cost. While there will often be financing options available to you, the total cost of a full-home remodel can be as much as $120K. So, if you’ve got a strict budget, you may want to spread your projects out over time.
Two common projects to start with would be a master bath or a kitchen renovation. They’re a great way to improve your lifestyle for a lower up-front cost. For example, prices in San Jose, CA go for approximately $45K and up for a master bath gut-and-replace, and $55K and up for a kitchen gut-and-replace.
Plus, don’t forget to factor incidentals into your ballpark. Giving yourself a cushion of 10-15% will help you make sure your project doesn’t break the bank. Why? Well, no one knows what’s behind a home’s walls until the renovation has already started. Finding unexpected plumbing or HVAC lines in a wall you wanted to tear down will add some unexpected costs to your original plan. So, it’s best to be prepared!
Step 4: Gather Inspiration
Now that you’ve gotten a better idea of your home renovation’s scope, it’s time to find your style! Social media, magazines, and TV shows can be a great place to learn about different design styles and which one suits you the best.
Keep in mind that your ideal look may fall in line with one of the major styles, but it may also be a mix of a few! Be sure to take note of which elements you gravitate towards as you explore. You can even save your favorite photos (and videos) and send them to your designer as references later on.
Step 5: Look for Your Home Renovation Team
Once you find your aesthetic, you can look for designers near you that specialize in that style. Once you’ve got a design in hand, you can ask for referrals for a contractor, or go out and get your own bids.
Or, if it’s a Design and Build company, they’ll do it all in-house. They’ll get you a quote, work with you to create a design, and send in their team to transform your home into your dream home. For projects in and around Santa Clara County, reach out to us at HArts Design+Build and we’d be happy to help you end-to-end.