The new year breeds the tendency to make lofty resolutions—many of which we have a hard time keeping. If sprucing up the ol’ homestead is at the top of your list of projects for 2017, here are a few simple tips to keep your sights set on realistic home renovation goals.
7 Tips on Your Home Renovation
1) Make Time
Don’t just say, “I’m going to finish renovating the basement”—write down in detail how and when you are going to make time to do this. Time is a precious commodity, and it isn’t just going to fall out of the sky onto your lap. You’re going to have to take time to make time. Maybe you commit to setting aside a few hours three times a week after work. Maybe every Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. is go-time. Depending on what your project is, you’re going to have to map out a detailed plan of how much time you’ll need to complete it, and when and how you’ll slot in that time.
This may seem obvious, but it’s easy to let our early-year optimism cloud our apprehension of actual cash flow. Just because you’re hoping to get a raise this year, or a better paying job doesn’t mean you will. Make sure the budget for your project fits your current earnings—not projected.
3) Recruit and Schedule Help
Some bigger home renovations require extra muscle, so if you anticipate this to be the case, ask friends and family for assistance and then let them know exactly when you’ll need them. We all get busy, and you stand a better chance of getting the help you need if you let people know when you’ll need them. Not just “sometime in the Spring.” Give them dates so they don’t make other plans.
4) Identify Your DIY Projects
There are many small home renos you can do in a matter of days—or even hours—by yourself. Think updating your window treatment, or painting the bedroom or refinishing the kitchen table. If there are projects you know you can do yourself and want to undertake, make note of these and refer to tip #1.
5) Identify When You’ll Need Pros
Whether it’s because you can’t tackle a project on your own or just don’t want to, you’re going to want to book time with the professionals of your choice early in the year. The pros get busy, fast, so scheduling time with them not only ensures your project will stay on track, but it also holds you accountable to achieving your goals.
6) Be Prepared
Ever promised to help a buddy move only to show up and find out he doesn’t even have boxes, let alone have everything packed? Don’t be that person. Whether you’re planning a DIY project or recruiting the help of friends or pros, have all your supplies on hand and the space ready to be worked on by the day you’ve set aside for work. Running around to pick up last minute materials will cut into valuable time, and annoy your help.
7) Tell People About It
Voicing your goals out loud actually helps you stay accountable to them, so let people know about your plans. Talk it up. Giving light to your intentions will also help you stay excited about the project. That dark, festering recess in the back of your mind is where good plans go to die.
What’s your favorite home renovation tip?