Words by Mina Phillips

Knowing how to plan a renovation, and understanding what process to follow, can have a huge impact on the final result of your project. Doing your research and knowing what to expect is key to getting the renovation you want. The following steps will help to keep your project on track.

1. Consider why you want to renovate

Understanding the motivation behind your renovation is essential to getting your desired result. Do you require more space for a growing family? If so, an extension and room addition may be the main focus of your project. Is your home looking tired and dated? In this case, you will need to pinpoint what areas of your home require particular attention. 

2. Do your research 

Once you know what type of work will be involved in your home renovation, start looking at examples of the work you want to be done. Most renovation companies will provide examples of past work and case studies on their website. Take note of what you do and don’t like about the projects you see. Keep copies of any pictures that could provide your designer with useful examples of what you like. 

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3. Contact a renovation company

Seeking out examples of local renovations should lead you to the websites of a few different renovation companies. Look at their past projects - are you satisfied with their standards? Do they offer the type of services you are after? Check out their customer testimonials to ensure they are a business you would want to work with. Once you have found a company that you are satisfied with, get in touch.

4. Book a consultation

When you have found a company you are interested in, book a consultation with them. This will be an opportunity for them to come to the project site and discuss your ideas. A good renovation consultant should be able to provide you with useful advice on your project and will tell you whether or not your ideas are feasible. Moving forward, they should be able to advise you on what council and building requirements you need to be aware of, what costs will be involved and any other important information relevant to your project. Even if you are opting for the DIY route, meeting with a renovation consultant could prove to be hugely beneficial. Having someone who can guide you through any regulations relevant to your project could save you a significant amount of money once you get into the build.

5. Decide who will manage the project

The next step is to decide on whether you will manage the project yourself or hire a project manager. Unless you have a significant amount of time available and building knowledge, managing the project yourself could prove to be a stressful and expensive process. Managing multiple trades without the experience to do so can lead to miscommunication, project schedules being extended and much more money being spent than originally estimated. If you don’t have much knowledge in the renovation sector, hiring a project manager could make the experience far more enjoyable and cost-effective.

6. Begin the decision-making process    

Probably the most difficult point in a renovation - making decisions. Now that you have selected a renovation builder, your concept will be discussed in more depth. Concept drawings will be drawn up along with cost estimates. This is the time to make any adjustments to your project so that it meets both your budget, taste and priorities. When you are happy with the concept, design and quote you can begin looking at signing building contracts. Depending on the size of your renovation, this is also a good time to discuss whether or not you will remain at home during the build or will find temporary accommodation.

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7. Get started!

Don’t hesitate, get your project underway with the help of Refresh! Get in touch for more information.

 This article was featured in Issue 30 of Renovate Handbook - your guide to home renovations.

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