Everything You Need to Consider Before a Home Remodel

March 21, 2023 | Whole Home

According to one recent survey, American homeowners undertook around  135 million  home improvement projects from 2019 to 2021, spending around $624 billion collectively. That’s roughly $100 billion more than they spent during the previous survey period, from 2017 to 2019. 

Are you planning your own home remodel in 2023 or beyond? If so, we know how exciting this prospect can be! When you imagine transforming your current space into something that’s more attractive, modern, and practical for your family, you may want to dive in and get started right away. 

However, these projects go much more smoothly when there’s a firm foundation in place from the very beginning. When you take the time to properly plan, you can avoid last-minute setbacks and expensive re-dos. Today, we’re taking a look at all of the important things you need to consider before beginning a remodel, and how we can help. 

Your Ultimate Goal

Before you take the first step forward in your home remodel, think about why you wanted to tackle this project in the first place. Are you planning to list your home and sell it once all of the upgrades are finished? Or, do you plan to continue living in it for years to come?

Some homeowners decide to remodel because their families are growing and the current square footage simply isn’t big enough for their needs. Others want to tear out features like old shag carpets, linoleum floors, and wall paneling to upgrade their homes for the 21st century.

Decide what your intentions are, and set them as early as you can. This one decision can help influence every other move that you make going forward. 

This way, you can start with a strategic, comprehensive plan, rather than choosing piecemeal upgrades as you go. Without some kind of controls in place, it’s easy to fall into the trap of over-renovating, which could compromise your timeline and budget. 

Your Return on Investment

As you brainstorm, keep in mind that no matter why you’re remodeling, you want to maximize the return on your investment. Even if you plan to live in your home for the rest of your life, it’s still smart to increase its resale value any chance you get.

There are many home projects that deliver a significant ROI, but this isn’t the case with every upgrade. The projects with the highest ROI include ones that are:

  • Professionally installed
  • Easy to maintain
  • Within budget

When it comes to certain spaces in your home, the following projects tend to deliver a high ROI when you invest in upgrading and renovating them:

  • Modernizing the kitchen and bathrooms
  • Refinishing hardwood floors
  • Finishing the basement
  • Painting interior walls
  • Adding rooms
  • Revamping outdoor landscaping

These remodels are as practical as they are beautiful, and they can improve the overall value of your home. Other projects, such as adding an in-home theater, wine cellar, or sports court, might enhance your property but may not deliver the ROI you’d expect. This is because such spaces are highly catered to your personal preferences and may not appeal to all future homebuyers. 

Neighborhood Comps

As you brainstorm which projects to complete, think about the value and condition of the other homes in your neighborhood. Then, consider how your property will compare once the project is complete. While some renovations will be locationally appropriate and deliver a solid ROI, others might be too flashy or extravagant for the surroundings. 

Of course, if you live in a high-income neighborhood, an addition like a backyard basketball court might not be considered out-of-place at all. In fact, it could be expected in that community, which will naturally increase your home’s value.

If you’re planning to sell your home in the near future, neighborhood comps are especially important. For example, say you purchased your home for $400,000 and you’re planning a remodeling project that will cost around $100,000. If most of the homes in your neighborhood sell for around $400,000, you might not be able to recoup that investment. 

Home values are largely driven by the local market, and there’s typically a ceiling on the selling price of a home in a given neighborhood. The upside of this is that if you’re able to purchase a property for less than the average selling price, you can make money by investing in an upgrade that will enhance its resale potential!

Your Budget

Regardless of the size or scale of your home upgrade, it’s essential to create a budget before you get started. Then, remember to stick to it!

As you browse Pinterest, scroll through social media, and keep up with the latest design influencers, you may decide to make changes or additions to the project along the way. Before long, you’ve heaped time and money onto the effort, of which you might not have an excess to spare. While it’s always a good idea to stay flexible, you don’t want scope creep to affect your project too significantly. 

As you create your budget, remember to add in a contingency fund to cover any unexpected costs you encounter along the way. For instance, will you need to stay in a hotel during certain stages of the project? Will you need to dine out more frequently during the kitchen phase of your remodel? 

Add those anticipated costs into your budget, and keep it close by as you initiate the renovation. 

DIY vs. Hiring a Professional

If you’re performing the remodel yourself, you might be able to save some money on labor costs. However, that doesn’t mean this route is less expensive. In fact, attempting to DIY a major home remodel can often cost more than if you’d hired a home remodeling services team to take the reins. 

Why is this the case? Any type of mistake that you make will cost you, and could also throw you off schedule. Plus, you’ll also need to consider any time off work that the project will require, as well as the personal free time you’ll lose. 

The work of renovating a home can be incredibly time-consuming, intricate, and laborious. That’s why it’s best left in the hands of an experienced professional. Once you schedule a consultation with a team like ours, you’ll have a clearer understanding of what the work will entail and cost.


Your Timeline

As you plan out the remodel, keep your preferred timeline in mind and communicate it with your contractor. Some homeowners simply want the project done, but don’t have a specific date when they want everything to be completed. Others know beforehand that they need everything finished by a certain time or event. 

Holidays are some of the most popular finish lines. For instance, you may want to have your brand-new home ready by Christmas, or in time for everyone to gather at Thanksgiving. If you expect to sell your home once the project is over, you might need to have it on the market by a certain date so you can move into a new property or relocate for a job. 

Your contractor should be able to estimate how long each part of your remodel will take. This way, you can work backward from your planned event, making sure there’s plenty of time to accomplish everything. Remember to add in a few weeks of wiggle room at the end, just in case the team runs into any unanticipated delays. 

To help you review your provided timeline and plan ahead, here’s a guide on how long it takes, on average, to remodel or renovate each room in a home. 

Team References

Before you hire someone to manage your home improvement project, make sure the prospective team is well-reviewed and reputable throughout your community. These contractors will be working on your property, and you should be able to trust that they’ll perform high-quality, expert work.

Start by consulting with your friends and family members and asking if they’ve ever completed a project of similar scope before. If so, which team did they use and how did the experience go? You can also extend your search to your social media followers.

Once you have the names of a few different renovation teams, take a look at each company’s website.

Is it user-friendly and easy to navigate? Can you easily find images of the homes that the team has worked on, including both the interior and exterior? Is there a page dedicated to client reviews and testimonials?

At Michael James Remodeling, we know that first impressions matter, and we’ve created a website that clearly explains who we are and what we do. You can start by viewing images of our past projects in our Project Gallery. When you click on each thumbnail image, you’ll navigate to a separate web page designated just for that project, which includes a detailed video explaining our process, as well as an extensive write-up on the work we did. 

In addition, you’ll also find quotes from our satisfied clients at the bottom of our web pages. We’re proud of the reputation we’ve built in and around North Georgia!

Design Inspiration

It might sound counterintuitive to think about the end of the project at the beginning. However, it’s important to have a clear vision of what you want the final design to look like. There’s no one-size-fits-all type of design style, so consider what feels special and beautiful to you.

At the end of the day, you’re the one who will live with the decisions you made before, during, and after the remodel. Think about what types of styles you tend to gravitate toward, and allow that to help influence your decision.

For example, are you drawn mostly to clean, stark-white minimalist interiors? Or, does the genre of maximalism appeal to you the most? 

Thankfully, there are attractive, high-style ways to incorporate any preference! While pared-down neutrals are still especially popular, there are also plenty of homeowners who have started to embrace more colorful, vibrant spaces. 

To help narrow down your design choices, take some time to browse online for interiors that you love. When you find an image that strikes you as special, take note of what draws you to it. There might be certain colors, textures, or styles that you prefer over others. 

Then, think about ways to incorporate those looks into your final design. While some esthetic touches (such as fabrics, draperies, and furniture) will come later, your contractor can also weave your style into the architectural aspects of your remodel. If you partner with our team, our expert designers can help you understand your style and showcase it in your home. 

Home bar with stone accent wall, fireplace, and wooden details in a living room

Usable Space

Once you have an idea of the type of decor style you love, consider which remodel projects are feasible and realistic considering your home’s current square footage.

For instance, you may adore images of high-style, luxury en suite bathrooms. If you have space to add one with your current layout, go for it! This might mean incorporating an adjacent bedroom or closet into your current bathroom to expand its size and scale.

If you don’t have the room just yet, don’t worry. Your contractor can help you understand the steps that will be necessary to get you there, which might require building a small extension. Note that while this step will expand the footprint of your property, it could also drive up your budget and extend your timeline. 

If this is the case, think about the projects that you want to prioritize the most. If your schedule and finances only allow certain renovations, choose the ones that will make the biggest impression and deliver the highest ROI. 

Jumpstart Your Home Remodel Project

A home remodel can be one of the most rewarding, exciting projects you undertake. When you live in a space, it can be difficult to imagine it any differently. However, you might be surprised at how much potential your property holds!

At Michael James Remodeling, we’re here to bring your remodel vision to life. Whether you’re focusing on a few rooms or your entire home, we’ll deliver the makeover you deserve. Our experts can provide consultations, 3D renderings, and interior design services to help you see what your space can be. 

To learn more about our approach, contact us today! 

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