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A Few Home Remodeling Rules
When you begin to think about remodeling your home, it's easy to go overboard, tackle too much, or overspend. However, if you follow a few basic home remodeling rules, you can avoid those difficulties. Here are some things to think about--even before you begin your remodeling project.
First, allow for the project to cost more than you originally thought it would. Regardless of which room you decide to remodel, you will typically find your ultimate cost to be about 25 percent higher than your original estimate. The same 25 percent figure also applies to the amount of time it will take to complete the project.
For example, if you have decided to spend $10,000 to remodel your kitchen and give yourself five weeks to finish the job, you can generally expect to end up spending about $12,500 and seven weeks on the project. There are no hard-and-fast rules, but one thing experienced remodeling professionals have learned--always expect the unexpected.
Next, take your measurements carefully, and do lots of research concerning the types of things that are available on the market to help you accomplish your remodeling goal. Go to your home improvement store and get test paint color samples. You can generally also obtain test samples of flooring materials such as carpet or hardwood flooring. Don't be afraid to ask your retailer for samples. They expect it, and are generally happy to supply them. They want you to be happy--and you don't want to make an expensive mistake by choosing the wrong materials. Ask your home improvement professionals for their input, as well. They will normally be aware of the latest developments in whatever field of remodeling you're going to tackle. Again, that’s their job, and they will be happy to help.
Third, once you've decided on your main components, don't forget to spend time on the small things, as well. It's easy to get caught up in deciding upon big ticket items, but it's often the interior design details, like trim, accent colors, and hardware that really make a remodeling project come to life.
Fourth, don't be too hard on yourself. Remember, remodeling is a sort of organic process, in which you're going to make mistakes, you're going to change your mind and do things somewhat differently than you had originally planned, and you're going to run into things that you hadn't anticipated. That's all part of the remodeling game, so just roll with it.
Finally, try to use the best quality of materials you can afford. If you're planning to be in your home for awhile, you're going to be living with the materials and hardware you use in your remodel, so you want them to be as nice as you can. It's not worth it to sacrifice your future enjoyment of the materials by skimping on quality during the remodeling job. Cheaper products also generally have a shorter lifespan, so they may actually end up costing more in the long run, once you have to replace them again.
Overall, remodeling can be a rewarding experience, if you just follow a few simple rules and use common sense along the way.
By Jeanette J. Fisher
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