Amidst these trialing economic times, renovation tips are more important than ever. Nowadays, being diligent about smart renovation is more crucial than ever. As inflation soars at its highest since 1982, it has taken the cost of both design and building along for the ride. With higher demand for labor, renovations in general, and higher material costs, the idea of your dream rebuild may seem daunting. But don’t let daunt discourage you. A well-planned and efficiently executed renovation will always leave a hopeful future ahead.  

In their recent issue of House Beautiful (HB), our friends visit experts like Brad Levitt, owner of A Finer Touch Construction, and founder of Interior Impressions, Amy Leferink to gather helpful tips on how to best approach renovation amidst these trying times. Aside from being a fun read—HB is always a staple on our reading list—this article provides perfect insight on how to approach any home renovation. It is a challenging time to embark on home renovation. But with these renovation tips at hand, your dream rebuild may be closer than you think.

No Regrets

It may be difficult to truly believe in having no regrets when building projects could take “15 – 30 percent” longer when comparing timelines to those in 2016, as Levitt shares with HB. Leferink elaborates on this intimidating reality, explaining that “people [workers] are so overloaded and busy that they can’t keep up.” However, even amidst the shortage of professionals out there right now, the National Association of Home Builders reported that single-family renovations have risen 26.1 percent.

The beginning may have seemed a bit scary but in the end, our clients were met with no regrets. | photo: JWH Before & After Gallery

Taking an old kitchen and renovating it is not just a win for a feel-good finish, but it’s a win for your financial future. Several economists predict that both construction and real estate markets will continue to climb upward, reaching for the sky for at least the next 3-4 years. Depending on the project size, renovation does not always provide instant gratification. It’s a process. But when that process is complete, the result is that of a gift that keeps on giving—both mentally and financially.

Spend Wisely

Speaking of finances, making sure your budget is calculated and followed closely is a huge part of the renovation, and now more than ever. Interest rates are in a state of inclination, so this requires an extra level of diligence pertaining to budgeting. However, patience and discipline will pay off. Although interest rates are on the rise, rates are still “historically low,” according to HB. If the renovation process meets optimization in both the conceptual and the building stages, then the investment is sure to provide an ample return.

Paint and wallpaper transform the smallest bedroom into a functional home office, a room deemed a necessity in every home nowadays | photo: JWH Before & After Gallery.

And how does one go about optimizing the conceptual and building stages of a renovation? Regarding concept—the design, planning, and scheduling—one key component to optimization is patience. Don’t jump into something because you feel rushed. Work with a designer who will work alongside you patiently—who will give you the time needed to develop your dream vision into tangible results. HB recommends that homeowners take up to “eight weeks of planning time” before the first hammer’s swing. When it comes to the building stage, the material is a huge facet to consider. Not everything needs to be brand new. It’s amazing the lengths that paint and wallpaper will go in solidifying your dream renovation. Remember, not every home improvement needs to be a huge investment!  

Hire Pros You Trust!

When it comes to tackling your renovation reasonably, finding the right professionals for the job is key. Firstly, always take the time to research designers and builders alike. Legitimate designers will always have an online portfolio where you can find their work, and reviews and customer testimonies will help you get a better understanding of the designer’s quality of work. Having a one-on-one meeting with your designer before conceptualizing begins is crucial. 

Set up a meeting in a place that you feel comfortable in. Once in the meeting, really get to know the professional you are hiring. It is significant that you trust them. For example, a designer will know which rooms will receive less traffic and should therefore suggest cheaper alternatives for material implementation. This is where that trust comes in. You may find an amazing designer who has a stellar portfolio but might try to implement expensive materials where they are not necessarily needed. Never forget, it is your renovation, and a good designer will work with both your vision and your budget.

Always hire both designers and builders who you can trust! | photo: JWH Design & Cabinetry

The same goes for hiring a contractor. Make sure that the contractor has a valid license and ask for pictures of previous projects. Get to know the contractor and make sure you can trust them with both budget and turnaround. Take your time in choosing the right professionals. It is not all just about hiring a professional that can get the job done. There are plenty of those everywhere. It is also about finding professionals who you can trust. When it comes to efficient home renovation, trust isn’t just key… it’s a requirement.