House renovation is one of those things that looks so simple and straightforward. When the bug bites, you suddenly want to knock down that wall, replace that fixture, add one thing on the other. The reality, however, is very different though, and you need to know a few things upfront.
Away from the glamour you see on TV, renovating your house to move in or add value, it takes time, money, and a lot of stress to pull off. The same applies to DIY renovations or those done by contractors.
This is not meant to discourage you. In fact, renovating your home is a very rewarding experience both in the process and outcome. By doing it right, you will eliminate a lot of the challenges involved. Here are a few things that everybody should know before starting a renovation project.
You can’t just get up and start knocking things about, and especially not here in Australia. Council laws stipulate that you need a permit for any renovations that alter the shape or structure of the house. This includes things like knocking down load-bearing walls or adding windows.
Apart from the legal requirements, you also need a practical plan on how you will undertake the project. What do you want to achieve with the renovation? Will you be going
DIY or hiring? Consider the pros and cons of each. What is the scope of your project, i.e, do you just want to renovate your kitchen or bathroom?
You will also need to plan each stage of the renovation to deal with things like electricals and plumbing, because everything has to be timed perfectly. For major renovations, you may also need to have a house inspection done and get a full report to avoid surprises along the way.
There is nothing that can prepare you for the financial burden most house renovation projects bring. The average Aussie family spends about $20,000 for house upgrades, which figure can go much higher.
When planning, it is easy to put down a datasheet of material costs, labour, prices of fittings, and other relevant costing information. Once the project is underway, though, extra costs come seeming from nowhere. These extra costs are also usually fully justified.
You can usually expect your renovation budget to inflate by as much as 20-30% unless proper planning and professional help is involved. The advantage of using experienced contractors is that they can usually estimate with more accuracy to know exactly what will be needed.
Many homeowners like the DIY approach to home renovations. It is a great way to cut on costs and get what you really want from your project.
When you work on your own home, you get to do it on your own terms and schedule. In the ideal situation, a DIY approach is best for minor renovations like putting up wallpapers, fixing new taps, or even installing tiles.
However, the situation is rarely ideal. Not everyone has the skills and the equipment necessary to pull off a proper renovation. You will almost always end up aggravating the situation if you start doing things that you are not qualified for. Not to mention legal problems with your bank, insurance, and other entities.
You will likely spend much more money fixing unintended errors than doing the actual upgrade. When it comes to extensive home renovation, its best to leave it to the experts.
We have all heard stories of people who brought down walls only to find secret hoards of ancient treasure. When you start renovating an old home, chances are you will come across a few surprises as well, although they will likely not be as romantic.
Houses tend to deteriorate over time. As such, cracked foundations and pest-infested walls are more likely than buried treasure. It is all part of the process, though. A small hitch should not put you off from your dream home.
You must always be ready to deal with such eventualities without breaking pace. Doing it on your own may overwhelm you, but a good idea is usually to have help with some of the more invasive stages.
Before you take a sledgehammer to floors and walls, do you know what is behind them? It would be catastrophic to rupture a gas pipe just because you weren’t careful enough. Electrical cabling also runs through walls, and the whole house is an intricate interconnection of various systems.
The reason why you’re required by law to have a permit to bring down load-bearing walls is to ensure that you know what you’re doing. It’s easy to destroy your home with a few tools and a lot of time. The renovating process is full of risks you should avoid.
Luckily, handing over your renovation project to skilled and experienced personnel eliminates most of the common risk factors. It may be fine to paint a few walls and change a few fittings, but if you have to turn to Google for guidance, it’s best to call in the pros.
If you are looking forward to a smooth, hassle-free, and cost-effective home renovation, call Sydney Home Renovations Hire. We are experts at our work, with a unique focus to project management to ensure 100% satisfaction.
It is time to uplift and unlock your home to experience its full potential. Request your free consultation today.