Deciding on a perfect home renovation to breathe fresh life into your living space can be exciting – and daunting! For many homeowners, the challenge is how to make a dream design a reality. Renovations, whether a general refurbishment or full-size extension, can be overwhelming, with no end of considerations.
At Pinnacle Works, we support every client end-to-end, from creating digital models of your desired layout to piecing together the components, project stages, and any permission required.
Here we’ve laid out a short series of steps to work through and get to grips with making your wildest home renovation imagination something achievable.
Step One: Pinpoint Your Home Improvement Aims
We’re often inspired by images of beautifully executed renovations and want to replicate ideas into our properties. Before you start calculating budgets or appointing contractors, the first stage is to assess precisely what you want to accomplish.
- Do you need an extra bedroom space to accommodate a growing family?
- Would you like more natural light and better airflow in your home?
- Is your target to increase the saleable value of your property?
- Do you want to improve curb appeal and refresh the exterior?
- Are you renovating to create a dedicated space for remote working?
- Is your home outdated and in need of modernisation?
- Do you want a larger kitchen area or play space for your kids?
This step is perhaps the most important of all. Once you’ve clarified your overall aims, you can keep coming back to them and ensure each decision you make contributes towards that goal.
Step Two: Think About Your Home Renovation Budget
Next up, it’s time to crunch some numbers. You can collate estimates first, but we’d recommend setting a maximum budget.
There will be a finite value you feel comfortable spending in most cases, and it’s better to have a solid idea of your total budget before you start speaking with contractors.
- You know what you want to do and how much you have available to spend – Pinnacle can then recommend solutions and options to meet both requirements.
- All renovations have multiple choices of materials and finishes, so if you’re confident in your figures, you can make informed judgments about which options fit your needs.
It can be tempting to be swept away with the excitement of an incredible design, but your finances matter. Putting in a little homework will ensure you won’t end up putting your budget under strain. Make sure you think about the variable costs outside of the work itself. For example, you might need to rent temporary accommodation during construction, apply for planning permission, and cover costs to redecorate and furnish your finished renovation.
Contingency budgets are also wise, so you aren’t stretched if anything runs overtime. A 10% buffer is usually a good benchmark to ensure you will stay on track.
Step Three: Ask for Quotes and Estimates
A quote and an estimate aren’t the same – and there can be quite a difference!
Quotations should be itemised and include all costs (including VAT), so you have a fixed price you’ll expect to pay for all the work contained within that quote. Estimates are usually open-ended, so they might guess how many days of labour are involved or provide a rough price for the renovation project.
If you’re in the early planning stages, estimates are sufficient and will help decide whether you can achieve what you’re hoping for within the confines of your budget. However, before you accept any quote, please ensure it is from a respected contractor and that you understand what is – and is not – included.
Step Four: Create a Detailed Renovation Plan
Planning is the detail that makes a massive impact on the success of a renovation project, so don’t ever feel that you’re spending too much time looking at the details – you’ll be thankful you did when work gets underway!
A renovation plan sums up all of the steps so far, so:
- The aim of the renovation project.
- Designs, styling and aesthetic you would like.
- How much the work is expected to cost.
- Sketches or plans of the finished remodel.
- Details about what your contractor will do and any work you’re undertaking yourself.
At this stage, it’s best to look into things like planning permission, permitted development and building regulations, as you might need to apply for approval before any construction can start. If you’re unsure about your local planning rules or would like advice about renovations allowed under permitted development, please get in touch with the Pinnacle Works team.
Step Five: Hire Your Contractor
When all the planning is complete, it’s time to get cracking! Pinnacle has years of experience working on a vast range of renovation projects. We always recommend basing your hiring decisions on more than the cheapest quote (which is often a false economy).
- Whether your contractor has sufficient experience? Have they worked on similar renovations before?
- Reputation – check out reviews on social media or Trustpilot to ensure your selected contractor is of excellent quality.
- Look into insurance and qualifications; any professional contractor will be happy to provide evidence of any specific skills or insurances you need.
- Payment schedules, usually based on an upfront deposit and staged payments according to progress.
You might need to hire multiple contractors if you want to take on a professional qualified in one specific trade. Still, a full-service contractor such as Pinnacle will include every element of your home improvement within one team.
This option is preferable since you’ll benefit from streamlined project management and won’t need to juggle invoices and schedules between various tradespeople.
Step Six: Get Your Home Ready for Renovation
Finally, before your contractors get to work, you’ll need to ensure your home is ready for the work to begin and the space is prepped. Leaving rooms furnished can often add time or even end up in damaged furniture.
Here are some examples:
- Kitchen renovations: do you need to buy or hire temporary cooking facilities or move any of your cutlery and dishes to a different room?
- Furniture: can you move furniture into a new space or put valuable items into storage?
- Living space: are you moving into rented accommodation? Have you packed up anything you won’t need with you so it isn’t in the way?
Once your home is ready, you’ll be able to move forward and allow the professionals to start work on your fantastic new home renovation.
Following these planning steps might seem like a delay, but you must invest time into researching your required outcome, choosing styles that match your aspirations, and making sure you have a reliable contractor and a total cost that is achievable within your budget.
If you’d like further advice about planning your home renovation or turning your ideas into a real-life project, please get in touch with Pinnacle Works for friendly, tailored, and professional guidance.