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How to prepare for a home renovation

Planning for a home renovation is an exciting and potentially stressful time.  Preparing for your home renovation is imperative to ensuring you have a positive experience.  Once your contractor has given you a start date you can begin your pack- up process.  It is best if you take 2-3 days to completely pack up your existing space before the remodel begins.  The last thing you want to do is have your remodeling contractor leave on “demo” day because the house is not ready to begin work.  Here are some tips for how to prepare for your home renovation project:

Decide if you are going to stay in the home during your renovation

A home that is being remodeled is many things.  It is dusty, it is loud, and it is an inconvenience.  You may want to consider staying with a friend or family member if you are going to have a major home renovation.  Another option may be to rent an apartment or stay in a hotel for an extended stay.  Alternatively, home renovations are a great time to leave town and go on a vacation.

If you are going to stay in your house during your renovation, it will be important to decide which rooms will be yours to inhabit during the remodel.  If you have a larger family, you may need to spend some time working on a bathroom schedule.  Condensing your home to one or two rooms during a remodel can be stressful so it will be important to keep your inhabited space clean to keep stress to a minimum.

Decide where you will prepare and eat food during your renovation

Most likely if you are planning a major home renovation, you will be remodeling your kitchen.  This means you will need to decide where you will prepare your food.  Do you have space in a loft, garage, or bedroom for you to prepare meals?  Will you be eating, sleeping, and reading in the same room during your remodel?  Wherever you plan to prepare your meals, you will need to set up a small temporary kitchen.

You may find that you can not prepare your meals and eat in the same location.  If you are preparing your meals in a loft area or in a garage, will you eat in there as well?  Is it possible to eat in an office area or in the backyard?  Does everyone eat at the same time?  It will be important to plan out these details before the renovation begins to avoid making stressful last minute decisions when blood sugar is running low and children are hungry.

Decide what you will eat during your remodel

You will have no pots or pans and no dishwasher.  Eating during a renovation can prove to be complicated, especially if you are feeding a  family.  If you decide what you will eat before your remodel begins, you can properly prepare yourself as well as stock your temporary kitchen.  This is a great time to explore your family’s favorite casserole dishes or crock pot meals so you can prepare them and freeze them to eat during your remodel.

Prepare your adjacent rooms for your remodel

Prevent disaster and heartbreak by removing items from your walls.  During your remodel there will be tools used which will cause vibrations to the walls.  In addition there will be quite a bit of foot traffic in hallways from the installers, inspectors, and project managers.  For this reason, it is important to remove anything attached to the walls in the remodeled rooms as well as in adjacent rooms (including shelves, pictures, and prints).  In addition, be sure to remove any floor mats to avoid any tripping hazards.

Remodeling is incredibly dusty.  To avoid getting dust on upholstery and on knick knacks you should box up what you can, making sure to apply labels to your boxes.   Anything that can not be boxed up should be covered  with thin plastic wrap.  If you do not want to invest in plastic wrap many times customers will simply drape old sheets over their furniture as protection. Clean up will prove to be much easier if you protect the surfaces in this manner.

Have a plan for your children and animals

Kids and animals are curious by nature.  They will need to be restricted from the construction zone for their own safety.  If you have a young child who naps during the day, it will be important for you to realize construction will be continued during nap time.  It may be in your best interest to make alternative plans if your child needs a quiet space to sleep or if you have multiple children who can not be supervised continuously.

It is important to have work zones restricted from pets during your home renovation project. Pets are sometimes easily frightened by loud noises.  If your pet is easily upset you may want to consider finding care for them outside of the home during your remodel.

Prepare yourself

You home renovation project will be loud.  Your home will be dusty.  You will not always have plumbing or electricity (especially if doing a bathroom or kitchen remodel).  Your privacy will be interrupted.  Some days you will need to have a glass of wine and unload your stress.  Other times you will need to take a walk to the park or go to the movies just to get out of the construction zone.  It is okay to feel stress during your remodel.  Keep a positive attitude, trust your contractor, and understand the renovation process is temporary.  Construction is not fun, but once it is all over, you will have a beautiful new home.