Summer Renovations- Get the Most Bang for your Buck


We have lived in our house for 12 years and in that time we have changed practically nothing to make it our own.  It was usually lack of time, money, or just being lazy, but now we are in a good spot to start doing some changes.  I am excited to go through some minor renovations while we change the dynamic of our home subtly, but fitting it to us.  Oh, my husband loves this (sarcastic).  I am home making honey-do lists while he is out working.  Poor Guy.

 

We started with the landscaping.  I don't garden and am so terrified of multi-legged creatures that I am not able to do outdoor chores and with my husband working many odd hours it is hard to get our yard under control.  I was tired of being the black sheep of the neighborhood, so I contacted a landscaper to see how he could help.  He helped tremendously.  Not only did he tame the yard, but he made it look so much better than it did before.  The ugly brown rocks that lay in the garden beds have been replaced with mulch and the bushes trimmed to acceptable lengths. 

The landscaping isn't the only thing we are working on.  In the coming weeks, we will be replacing all the windows, the siding, and the gutters.  The house won't look like it was built in the 1970s anymore.  It is a big step for us but one we are looking forward to.  I can't wait to share the updated photos. 



I know that a lot of us out of work cannot afford to make renovations either doing it ourselves or hiring someone else, but there are small things you can do to make sure you are getting the best value and will be happy with the end result.

How To Start Renovations
1. Set a budget- I recommend going on the low side of your budget for things that may come up that are foreseen- For example, one of the windows in our home was not installed correctly.  The window is flush with our house so when it rains the window has water coming into the house and causing water damage.  This means we have to redo the entire window instead of just replacing it.  It is an added expense, but we had a budget that we could workaround.

2. Do not settle for the first company that gives you a quote.  I researched 5 companies based on reviews on Google.  I typically will take the top 3 lowest ratings and the top 3 highest ratings for each company to see if it is something we can work around or if those reviews make or break my decision to use them.  I also looked into warranties on the products I was purchasing and the way the installers are employed: ie: does the person work directly for the company I am dealing with or are they subcontracted.  Are they insured?

3.  Did they pitch you?  Did they promise the moon and the stars just to get the sale or did you feel at ease with them?  The project manager that came to my home was punctual, provided me with the information I had no idea I needed. and showed me how his product worked in comparison with a competitor's.  I am that weird one that knows animals will tell you when they feel threatened or read someone as a questionable person.  My dog, who does not like anyone laid down and took a nap while he was here.  

4.  If you are handy and can do things around the house yourself- God bless you.  Just make sure to pull the appropriate permits in your town/city.  This can cause a problem if you don't.

If you could remodel your house what would you start with?
Inside the house or outside the house?

    

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