10 Common Yet Avoidable Mistakes With Home Renovations

Check out the following common mistakes that could be avoided when doing home renovations.


Home renovation can bring about several benefits. It gives you that fresh new feeling that makes you appreciate your home even more. If you’re planning to sell it, a well-done renovation job will give you more chances of a better return of investment. But, do watch out for mistakes that could ruin not just your home but your future plans as well. Check out the following common mistakes that could be avoided so you’d never have to suffer the consequences.

1. Choosing the wrong contractor.

Many homeowners make the mistake of hiring contractors without first conducting a thorough background check. As a consequence, they end up hiring the wrong ones. If you’re planning for home renovation, don’t just rely on what the user review sites say. Look for a contractor that has years of experience in remodeling homes for homeowners. It is not advisable to rely solely on contractor referrals. It is best to check and ask for the contractor’s licensing and certification. Cross out from your list those who fail to show their credentials. Don’t forget to check from the BBB or Better Business Bureau and in the consumer affairs agency in your locality for any records of complaints from the contractor’s previous clients.

2. Failure to earmark some money as a buffer.

Home renovation projects should be done according to your budget. However, when setting aside a specific amount for your renovation budget, do not forget to earmark another amount as a buffer. For example, if the total cost is projected to reach as much as $150,000, set aside around 20 percent of it as your contingency budget. This is because when renovating, there will always be some parts of the project that will surely blow your budget. But once you have this set amount for contingency, you will be less likely to suffer.



3. Not obtaining the necessary permits.

The procedure for obtaining a building permit could be tedious and costly. But, don’t ever think about sidestepping this requirement. Otherwise, you will end up having difficulty selling your home in the future. A building permit will serve as a proof that you were the one who processed and spent for the renovation of the home. A building permit is also needed so that the insurance company will be able to cover you in case of accidents. A building permit also helps ensure that your contractor adheres to all the safety standards all throughout the process of renovation.

4. Avoiding neutral choices.

Many homeowners only take into consideration their personal preferences when making renovations. While this can help you achieve your ideal home design, it may not be good enough for future buyers. Besides, not all homebuyers would also like your preferences. So, instead of choosing purple for a wall paint, think about something that’s more neutral. Don’t make it too hard for a homebuyer to envision himself in your space. This way, you won’t have a hard time winning a homebuyer’s heart.

5. Renovating beyond the standard.

Part of the rules of home renovation projects is to abide by the standards of your neighborhood. For example, if the majority of homes in your neighborhood are just under 2,500 sq.ft., never make any attempts on adding a thousand more square feet. Otherwise, you will have a hard time selling your home in the future. This is because the value of your home will always be based on the median value of the homes in your neighborhood. Therefore, it would be wise to check first the median value of the homes where the home you’re about to renovate is being situated before conducting any major renovation project. This way, you will be assured of a good return of investment whenever you decide to sell your home.

6. Not minding the safety procedures.

This is one of the most important rules for any renovation project that many homeowners choose to forego. Just because you’re doing it yourself doesn't mean you can just skip wearing safety goggles. Do not forget to turn off the main breaker before doing any electrical repairs. Ignoring these safety precautions may only increase the likelihood of accidents which could put your renovation on hold and your life at risk.

7. Trying to save costs using cheap materials.

Before buying any materials for your renovation project, always remember that more often than not, you’ll get what you paid for. Don’t just settle for the most affordable material you can find. Choose the one that is guaranteed to last for years if not a lifetime. Purchasing cheap materials would only mean low-quality renovation projects that will certainly give you lots of headaches in the long run.

8. Refusing home inspection.

Professional inspectors have the eye for flaws that could prevent your home meeting certain building codes. It is best to have your home thoroughly inspected by a professional before the start of the renovation and before putting the final touches. This way, you can be assured that everything is safe and done right before you declare a project to be “mission accomplished”.

9. Not having enough storage space.

A storage space is very important because this is where you’ll be putting your materials and supplies for the renovation project. Failure to plan and set a designated place for the materials will only lead to clutter. Unfortunately, clutter could increase everyone’s risk for accidents. Before planning to buy the materials, you have to decide first whether you’ll be buying in bulk or not. Then, think about where you will store these while the contractors are in the process of renovating your home.

10. Expecting that the whole process will go smoothly.

Just because everything has been carefully planned and all the materials are ready does not mean that indeed the renovation project will go as smoothly as you expected it to be.

In reality, you are bound to experience delays, setbacks and lots of compromises. What you have in mind for the design and the overall construction will be implemented as much as possible. However, always keep an open mind for any possibilities and unexpected events.

Homeowners looking to renovate their home must never underestimate the importance of hiring a professional contractor, not because of luxury, but out of necessity.



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