Home improvement can be a fun hobby or an expensive nightmare depending on the circumstances and who you ask. Either way, it’s important to set achievable goals and have a solid plan of attack to avoid unnecessary costs and delays. Here are a few easy tips to help you succeed in your next home improvement project.
Create a Timeline
Before you purchase any materials or hire any workers, you should create a rough timeline of when you expect to finish the project and what milestones you’re looking to hit along the way. Things happen and if you don’t stick exactly to the plan every step of the way, there’s no need to be disappointed. But diving into a project with nothing to guide you is an easy way to get in over your head and end up overpaying for materials or labor. Resources can be found online if you’re uncertain of how long a project should take.
Say you need a particular kind of tile to finish a project and that tile is back-ordered. You can make the necessary delays and adjustments to your schedule if you plan ahead and discover the tile is out of stock before you hire someone to install it. But if you do it last minute, you’ll either be forced to pay to expedite the shipping or end up paying workers you can’t use.
Leave Room in Your Budget
Although you can do your best to crunch the numbers and create an effective plan, things happen, and sometimes unexpected costs or delays are inevitable. Professional real estate developers don’t get it right every time – they learn to expect the unexpected. Even if you’re just doing a small home improvement project, you should employ the same mentality. There’s no need to get crazy and double your budget just to prepare for mistakes – unless you’re doing it yourself and are unconfident in your abilities. But it’s always smart to leave a 10-15% cushion in your budget to prepare for an unexpected expense.
Watch out for Asbestos
Asbestos materials are common in older homes and can completely derail an improvement project. It’s toxic to breathe in and causes cancers like mesothelioma. If you’re doing some work on your home and you discover a suspicious material – especially one used for insulation from heat – you may want to have it tested. Asbestos is not only deadly, it’s expensive to have removed. You’ll have to contact a licensed asbestos removal company to have it taken care of because of the health risks the material poses. There are resources you can use to be reimbursed if you and your family have been exposed to asbestos. Check out Asbestos.Net for more information on your rights and what you may be entitled to if you’ve been put at risk by the asbestos industry.
Home improvement is never a walk in the park, but it can be extremely rewarding if you are diligent and safe. Follow these tips to keep your next project on track.