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Which Order Should Rooms Be Renovated in?
When remodeling multiple rooms, it’s recommended to tackle them one at a time. “This is especially true when renovating kitchens and bathrooms,” says Fulmer. “You don’t want to get stuck in the middle of renovating all of your bathrooms and put your family in a bind when they need to get ready. Renovating one room at a time will also limit the amount of time each one is out of commission.”
Andre also recommends staggering bathroom renovations, adding that you can set up a makeshift kitchen to prepare meals if you only have one in the house.
How to Manage Your Timeline
However much you plan and prepare, the truth is that you never know exactly how long a renovation will take—and often, it requires more time than anticipated. “Allow for flexibility and expect the unexpected,” Andre says. “There’s no telling what’s behind those walls, above the ceiling, and beneath the floors.”
Inexperience with a project or scope creep in the middle of the renovation can also cause delays, according to Fulmer. “The best way to stay on track and reach milestones is to stay focused and never lose momentum,” he advises. “It’s extremely common for homeowners to get halfway through a project, take a small break, and never pick it up again. Once you start a renovation, spend as much time as possible working on it to keep the momentum going. Otherwise, you run the risk of losing steam and never finish it.”
Andre adds that lead times for materials haven’t been quite the same post-pandemic, so it’s helpful to check in with your contractors and team on anticipated delivery dates as well as have backup options to prevent further pushing of the timeline.
Keep Things Safe and Secure
It goes without saying that most home renovations create a lot of dust. “If you or anyone in your family has asthma or severe allergies, you might want to strategize on how to keep the dust levels down before starting a live-in renovation,” recommends Fulmer.
Andre stresses that safety is the most important aspect of any reno. “Wear protective gear like a hard hat, safety goggles, and boots when on the job site,” she says.
For homes with pets or kids, additional precautions are needed to ensure everyone stays safe. “If you are doing anything with electricity, it is important to cap off any exposed wires and turn off the breakers for any circuits being worked on,” Fulmer elaborates. “Children will immediately be drawn to wires sticking out of the wall, so you want to make sure they don’t get shocked. The best option would be to never leave wires exposed and always reconnect them to their associated switches and outlets and reinstall the cover plates.”
Andre also suggests installing barriers to keep kids and pets far away from the construction area, as well as minimizing time spent at home during the day so that more involved projects don’t put inhabitants at risk.
Apart from safety procedures, it is important for families with kids and pets to avoid leaving paint cans open. “Otherwise, you could end up with a spill or foot or paw prints on your floors,” notes Fulmer.
Despite the best efforts, there are certain circumstances where it’s best not to live at home while renovating. This is especially true if you are updating systems that will render most of the house unusable, such as completely replacing the plumbing or electrical systems, according to Fulmer. Other instances are if the house is extremely old or a family member has severe allergies to dust, says Andre.
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