Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Pratical Considerations for Remodeling or Redecorating

As you consider remodeling or redecorating your home there are several questions you must ask yourself to insure that you are making the most of the process and the budget you've set aside.
1) First and foremost, you must ask yourself, "How long do I think I will keep this property, is it long or short term? You'll then know how much money you want to spend. Buying quality products or quick fixes.
2) Do you have enough space ? If no, is there room on the property to expand, upwards, outwards or internally? Check with the local authorities before planning since there may be a maximum site coverage that you are allowed to take up.
3) Do you have kids and pets, and are their needs taken care of? Life can be much easier if everyone has their own space, that way your whole house doesn't become the playground. A catdoor can save you from many late night meows to get out.
4) Do you entertain frequently? Do you truly need a dining room? Do you eat in the living room/kitchen? Deciding how you use a space is vital, There is no use adding on a dining room if you have a teenage family who come and go, eat on the run and you never dine together. You would be better off building a family room sharing space with the kitchen to cater for meals on the run.
5) Are all the areas functional? Kitchen, bathroom, closets, are their enough facilities? A space can be transformed by simply repositioning appliances, adding a dishwasher, moving out a bath and adding a shower, or moving a sink so you free up the bathroom.
6) How is your storage space sufficient? There is never enough storage!! Start with a spring cleaning and have a garage sale. Then ask youself this question again! Simple so;utions can be - creating a window seat with storage underneath, putting a door under the stairs, going into the roof space with seasonal items ie ski gear, surf boards etc. Adding shelving to the walls in the garage, laundry room, bedrooms etc.
7) Do you have enough bedrooms, and are they sufficiently spacious? Perhaps more compact or multifunctional furniture could be a solution, bunkbeds for kids, tallboys, armoires, futon couches.
8) Do you need privacy within the household, and a quiet place to think? A study only requires a small space and can often be the only space that you can lock everyone out of! Think about adding one if you are going to be making extensions to the house.
9) Do you need a playroom, family room, study, garage? As most parents know, private spaces can be hard to come by in a family home, often the garage is a safe haven for the Dad, a family room can mean you get to watch the news and not the cartoons, and a study can be a place for Mom to escape and read a magazine with a cup of coffee.
10) Do you need additional services? Ie gas, additional phone/fax lines, digital cable, dsl, security systems? Make sure you get a price for the installation costs and the long term costs, some companies offer cheap teaser rates to get the product / service into your home then charge you an arm and a leg to keep it running. So it doesn't hurt to shop around and ask lots of questions.

Finally, in the interest of making the redecorating or remodeling process as cost efficient as possible, take the time to think through the entire process and evaluate your needs in light of the budget you've allowed. As you focus on the areas which will truly make your house a more livable home, the rewards of the remodeling process will far outweigh the temporary inconveniences.

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