If you're about to embark on a renovation, we know you're probably wondering how to save time and money on your project. While we can't promise you x-ray vision or the ability to predict the future (yet), we can give you some tips that will help you keep your sanity intact when things get crazy.
To give you the best advice, we have interviewed some of our most trusted contractors to explore all their experience working with clients.
1. Hire Professionals.
To no surprise, the very first piece of advice is to hire professionals! It's important to note that unless you're a skilled professional with an abundance of spare time, taking on a renovation project yourself can be a time-consuming endeavour. Trying to tackle a renovation in your limited free time can stretch the project timeline indefinitely. Hiring professional contractors allows you to leverage their expertise, experience, and full-time commitment to complete the job efficiently and effectively.
"Do not rely only on Google reviews to find a contractor; ask for references and call them, ask for a copy of their contract and ask how they deal with extra costs." Meysam - Enzo Design.
2. Plan, Plan, Plan.
Before you even think about swinging a hammer, spend some quality time planning your renovation project. Take the time to define your vision and goals for the project. Consider your style preferences, desired functionality, and any specific requirements you have in mind. The clearer you are about what you want, the more effectively your designer and your contractor can bring your vision to life.
"It is important to ensure that, by the time your contractor is ready to "break ground" on your project, all permits, plans, material selections, and specifications are finalized as much as possible, depending on the nature of your project." Rick - Halrich Homes.
3. Work with a designer.
Hiring an interior designer is a good idea if you don't have the time or energy to visit multiple material suppliers for your renovation project. They can help you find the perfect elements without having to do all the legwork yourself. With their extensive networks and industry knowledge, they can save you valuable time and effort.
They'll collaborate with you to grasp your vision and style, curate choices, and present carefully chosen options that align with your budget. Their expertise guarantees high-quality and functional selections. With their help, you can trust them to bring your vision to life without the hassle of hunting for perfect matches yourself. We believe so much in the value of our work that we wrote a blog post regarding hiring an interior designer.
4. Set a realistic budget and plan for the unexpected.
Establishing a realistic budget is key to a successful renovation. Discuss your budgetary constraints openly with the designer and contractor you're considering working with. A trustworthy professional will help you make informed decisions and prioritize where to allocate your funds for the best results. Setting a contingency fund will help you deal with the unexpected.
5. Optimize Existing Features.
When renovating, it's not always necessary to tear everything down and start from scratch. Discuss ways to optimize existing features and elements in your home with your designer. You can save time and money by repurposing certain materials or working with the current layout. A skilled designer will find creative solutions that breathe new life into your space while minimizing unnecessary expenses.
6. Embrace Value Engineering.
Value engineering is a strategic approach to cost-effective alternatives that don't compromise quality. Work with your designer to find areas where savings can be achieved. Your contractor/designer will analyze materials, design, and scope, proposing alternatives that reduce costs without sacrificing vision. This may involve exploring different materials, finishes, and techniques. Value engineering requires open communication to align goals and priorities with a budget. With collaboration and expertise, informed decisions maximize value.
"Picking finish materials that are cost-effective but more durable, smart millwork or space design, function rather than expensive finish material. Construction: re-purposing or reclaiming material, higher R-value insulation to save on future bill costs." Meysam - Enzo Design.
"Don't marry a brand! Major brands are the best way to START shopping for your materials and fixtures, but keep an open mind for non-brand name products that perform as well as their more expensive name-brand counterparts. Also, ensure that the designer and contractor have prior successful experience with the selected products." Rick - Halrich Homes.
7. Effective Project Management.
Hire a contractor with a proven track record in coordinating contractors, schedules, and materials to manage a renovation project effectively. Work with your interior designer during the project management phase to ensure the design plans and specifications are followed. Their attention to detail and knowledge of building codes will save time and money, and their coordination skills will ensure smooth communication among contractors and suppliers. Your designer is your advocate, ensuring your design vision is accurately translated and maintained throughout the project.
"As an engineer, I am custom to building processes, but Jessica’s skills are amazing. One day, during a site visit, she was quickly able to pick on a contractor’s mistake that would have caused a big headache down the road." Zeno Farinelli - Client
By incorporating these tips into your renovation journey, you'll be well-equipped to save time and money without compromising quality. Our trusted contractors have shared their wisdom, and now it's up to you to bring your dream home to life. Get ready for an exciting and rewarding renovation experience.