When Aaron and I decided that we wanted to be heavily involved in the process of renovating our home, I personally never thought it would be so time consuming. After all, I wasn’t planning on doing any hard labour myself. Now that they’ve begun framing, there’s so many details to consider and bargains to hunt for. Being our first time, we had no idea how much things should cost or when things needed to be ready by.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you along the way, and some things you should think about to prepare to have your renovations completed within a reasonable time frame.
- Step 1 – Drawings: drawings must be prepared prior to the demolition of your home in order for a work permit to be issued. Ensure that you’ve thought about the practicality of your desired floor plan and work out as many potential kinks as you can prior to submitting your drawings to the city.
- Step 2 – Demolition: by this time, you should be looking and researching different suppliers to purchase items from for your home. See if your contractor has an account with any suppliers if you are ordering the items yourselves – they are usually highly discounted if they have an account is set up with the supplier.
- Step 3 – Subflooring/Framing: this would be a good time to start looking into kitchen designs and deciding where you wish to have your electrical run. Soon enough, the drywall will be up, and the rough-ins for mechanical and electrical will be put in. Where do you wish to have your power outlets placed? Will your bathroom have over-the-mirror lighting, pendant lighting or ceiling lighting? Will your vanities have one or two sinks, or will they be stand-alone or floating? Will this require one or two light fixtures? Will you have a gas stove, or electric? Do you want hanging pendants over that breakfast bar, and/or a chandelier in the dining area? What kind of showerhead do you want? So many of these decisions must be made prior to the rough-ins being put in. Come up with a plan that you love and consider all the little details that it entails.
- Step 4 – Mechanical/Electrical/Insulation: by this time, you should be ordering tiles and flooring, choosing your kitchen designer and deciding on a more definite layout for your kitchen space. Take into consideration if any of your orders are special orders or if they’ll be available upon ordering. If your orders are special order, make sure you calculate the amount of time in which it will take to come in.
- Step 5 – Drywall: have your kitchen designer ready to go to do final measurements once the drywall is up. Tape the kitchen layout out with painter’s tape and see how it will look realistically in the space. Custom kitchens can take anywhere from 3-10 weeks to be made and delivered. Always keep your time frame in mind when selecting a provider as well as a style.
- Step 6 – Tiles/Flooring: the house is finally coming together, and the vision is starting to develop. There are numerous things to consider when tiling and laying your floors. Have you chosen your grout color? Would you prefer your tiles to be laid staggered, aligned or even herringboned? Would you prefer 12 x 12 tiles, 12 x 24 tiles, or a mosaic? What about polished or matte? Will the polished go on the floor to create a more rich look, or rather on the shower walls to prevent a slippery floor? Will you be tiling the shower ceiling and the tub encasement? Did you want a shampoo nook in the shower stall? All of these questions impact the quantity of items to order and will play an integral part in the style of your home. This would also be a good time to ensure that any faucets are ordered and that plumbing is ready to be hooked up when the vanities are delivered.
- Step 7 – Vanities: the final touches are now beginning to be placed. Now is the time to begin thinking of things such as paint colours, or wallpaper patterns. While there’s lots of great options to choose from, ensure that you stick to your original style to nicely coordinate your home.
- Step 8 – Painting: time to start purchasing mirrors. While mirror sizes should be considered much earlier on in your renovation process (because often times the sizes of your mirrors directly correlates to your lighting selections), now is the time to buy if you haven’t already. Do you want circular mirrors, wall-to-wall mirrors or mirrors with frames? Will you be mounting your mirrors with plastic clips, spring loaded clips, fixed mirror clips or tape and glue?
- Step 9 – Light Fixtures/Faucets: everything should be coming together nicely! Do your faucets and light fixtures coordinate with one another? Is your breakfast bar pendants polar opposite than your dining room fixtures in an open concept home? Make sure your selections are consistent within your rooms unless it’s to make a statement! Don’t mix polished chrome and brushed nickel together. These are little details that can make or break a room.
- Step 10 – Exterior Work: are you re-facing your home or replacing siding? Ensure that the colors of your windows and doors will match with your selection. Are you having your roof replaced? Be mindful of the colour you choose for your shingles.
- Step 11 – Doors and Windows: it would be a good time to buy other outdoor items you may need, such as your mailbox, house number or doorbell, again, always ensuring that they are consistent with the style of the exterior of the home.
- Step 12 – Landscaping: when selling, this is often as important as the interior of your home! Have you ever heard of “curb appeal?” A buyer’s first impression is the outside of a home and this can often make or break a potential sale. In fact, if your exterior isn’t attractive, some buyers may not want to even look inside!Not planning on selling anytime soon? Choose a landscape design that fits your outdoor needs. Do you like to entertain? Think of having built-in seating and a gas line for your BBQ. Do you hate upkeeping your yard? Think of removing the grass and using interlocking stone instead with low maintenance shrubbery. Have young children? Maybe decks with multiple levels isn’t the most practical route to go. Want a built-in fire pit? Check the by-laws before buying. Hate the city noise? Think of putting a water fountain to mask it. Ask for a professional opinion and research ideas that you can mix-and-match to make the perfect outdoor space for you.
“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”