What You Should Do Before Starting a Remodeling Project


Remodeling your home is a huge undertaking, and you want to make sure it turns out the way you envision it. Bad workmanship and unexpected costs can leave you disappointed and over budget. Before starting your home remodeling project, remember the following advice!

Get a Quote

In deciding on the extent of your project, you should get quotes from contractors to estimate your costs. Prices will vary, so talk to more than one company and compare their bids. A responsible contractor will be upfront about costs and may provide you with choices to help you meet your budgetary needs. Once you have a quote, you can prioritize the design features you most want and if necessary, cut out portions that exceed your budget or can wait until later. Leave a cushion in your budget for the unexpected; it’s not unusual for unforeseen problems to come up after the project has started.

Vet Your Contractors

You shouldn’t choose a contractor solely on the basis of the quote alone. You should look at home remodelers’ past work before selecting them to complete a job for you. Most contractors will have a portfolio of past projects to show you. They will also have reviews or testimonials from clients. When interviewing for a contract, ask questions. Ask about the contractor’s licenses, certifications, and experience, as well as insurance and warranties. Also, inquire about the timeline for completion and how and when your contractor will communicate with you.

Secure Your Financing

Using savings is the best way to finance a home remodeling project, but if you don’t have quite enough free cash, you can get financing, if you qualify. A home equity line of credit (HELOC) is a loan based on the equity you have built in your property. Cash out refinancing may also be an option. You may be able to refinance your current mortgage with better terms and take a portion of your equity as cash to pay for remodeling expenses. There are advantages and disadvantages to each type of financing, so talk to your lender and get the facts.

If you’re dreaming of an updated kitchen, an extra bathroom, or a finished basement, you may be eager to get started right away. Don’t take any actions on impulse, however. Before making any decisions, take your time to explore your options and talk with the experts.

Read this next: How to Make Your Home Cheaper to Maintain

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