4 Steps to Prepare for Your Home Renovation

So you’ve decided to renovate your home – congratulations! Now that you’ve made that very exciting decision you may be wondering… what now?! 

With over 80 years of renovation experience under our belts, we can help guide you through the next steps to prepare for your home renovation with the confidence you need so that you’re relaxed and ready for your big project.

Prepare Funding

You’ve decided what you’re renovating and you have an idea of what you want (and don’t want). Now it’s time to establish a budget range to work within and decide how you want to fund the project.

Prepare a Budget

Begin by doing some research: go online or visit your favourite home improvement store in person to get a sense of what the materials and appliances that you like may cost. Watching home improvement shows can be a great way to get ideas for your renovation, but just be aware that the costs they show may not be realistic.

After you’ve made a list of items you want to include in your renovation and their approximate costs, that’s where we come in! We’ll help you determine the scope of work, as well as the costs associated with achieving what you’re looking for, including planning/design, materials, labor, fixtures, appliances, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, structural changes, permits, and reno waste removal. Next, we’ll provide you with a budget to review and answer any questions you may have. 

For more information, check out our blog on creating a renovation budget.

Prepare Your Financing

Now that you have a budget in hand, it’s time to consider how you want to finance your renovation.

Some options include:

  • Personal Savings
  • Home Equity Line of Credit
  • Home Equity Loan
  • Refinance Your Mortgage
  • Government Assistance Programs
  • Personal Loan or Line of Credit

Pro tip: add an additional 10% to your budget to account for any unforeseen surprises. 

There are pros and cons to each option. For example:

  • Personal Savings
    • Pro: you will not accrue any additional costs in interest or fees
    • Con: you will have less available in your savings should an unexpected cost arise
  • Home Equity Line of Credit
    • Pro: typically a lower interest rate as the equity you have built up in your house is securing the loan
    • Con: you will need to budget for additional costs owing to interest on the line of credit
  • Refinance Your Mortgage
    • Pro: you will be able to access as much as 80% of your home’s value and spread your payments over a longer period of time at a lower rate of interest than a personal line of credit
    • Con: refinancing your mortgage may involve additional legal or appraisal fees

Take some time to explore what option works best for you and your budget by researching online or discussing with your financial advisor. You can also find more information in our blogs, How to Finance a Renovation Part 1 and Part 2.

Whatever option you choose to go with, be aware that it takes time to arrange financing. Be sure to plan well in advance so that you can access your funding when you need it!

Choose a Contractor

For major renovation projects, you will save time, money, and your sanity by hiring an expert.

A renovation is a considerable financial investment, and you need to know that your contractor will meet your expectations in terms of design, quality, timing, and budget. You will be trusting your contractor in your home for a lengthy period of time, and you want them to care for your home like you do.

So how do you choose the right contractor for your project?

A good contractor will:

  • Review your project objectives and come up with the best design for your wants and needs, tailored to your home
  • Provide an initial budget to review, and make changes to the scope of work as needed for your budget
  • Obtain necessary permits and locates
  • Communicate frequently throughout the project
  • Maintain a clean and organized work area
  • Ensure their work with a warranty

The above points are only the baseline of expectations at Menno S. Martin, where we go above and beyond to ensure that you feel confident and comfortable every step of the way throughout your renovation. Our staff are not only experts at what they do, they are also polite and considerate of you, your family, and your home.

Learn more about working with us in Renovate with Confidence, the Menno S. Martin Way.

Prepare Your Home and Plan Your Routine

Prepare Your Home

  • Remove as much as possible from the areas that will be under renovation
  • Pack away valuables, breakables, and items that you won’t need access to during the renovation
  • Relocate those items that you regularly use to another space in your home that you can access easily throughout the reno
  • Cover items in plastic or a drop-cloth to ensure they stay clean and protected

Depending on the area of your home that will be renovated, some extra planning may be beneficial. For example, consider eating fresh foods in your fridge, or those that might expire, and hold off replenishing them if you prepare for a kitchen renovation. Go through your pantry and inventory if there are items you may want to donate to the food bank. This will save on waste and the work needed to empty your kitchen!

Plan Your Daily Routine

You may need to plan how to continue your daily routine without using a particular room or part of your house during the renovation period.

Here are some ideas to consider:

  • Kitchen renovation:
    • Cook your meals on a barbecue
    • Prepare a takeout/dine out budget
    • If you can still access the oven and stove during your reno, try preparing meals in another room using the dining room table, or set up a temporary collapsable table to use
    • Relocate the fridge to another room temporarily to store perishable food
    • Consider using disposable dishes and clean cutlery in a wash bucket
  • Bathroom renovation (if you don’t have another bathroom that you can use during the renovation that has a shower or bath):
    • Set up a washing station beside the sink in the kitchen with dental care items, shaving supplies, soap, shampoo and conditioner
    • Invest is some good dry shampoo for the days you may need to go without washing your hair
    • Stock up on baby wipes for when the water is shut off – not just for babies, these are helpful for cleaning hands, faces, and a general quick wash as well
    • Ask nearby friends or family if you can borrow their bathroom for a hot shower now and then during your reno
  • Bedroom renovation:
    • This is the time for your pull out sofa bed to shine if you have one!
    • Pick up a comfortable air mattress (and an automatic air pump) to use in another room
    • Temporarily bunk with friends or family
    • Check into an Airbnb or hotel for shorter renovations
  • Pets:
    • Consider crating your dog or keeping them in a gated area while contractors are working: this keeps them out from underfoot, making for a safer environment for the contractor and your pooch; and keeps them from sneaking out of a door that contractors are using frequently
    • Cats should be kept in a secure, safe room away from the potentially scary noises from construction
    • Pets can be sensitive to loud noises or workers coming and going, so consider if relocating your furry family members with family or friends would be in their best interest
    • From cats and dogs to geckos and snakes, boarding your pet is also an option 

Prepare Yourself

We work hard to minimize disruption and make your renovation experience as easy and pleasant as possible. As it will involve some changes from your normal day-to-day routine in your home, it can be helpful to get yourself into the right mindset before work begins.

Having cleared out the room to be renovated, you may have packed away items stored in other rooms, taking up space where they wouldn’t normally be. This may make it feel cluttered or messy, but remember, it’s only temporary! If you have a smaller space, consider off site storage options like a self-storage locker, a portable moving pod, or a friend’s garage. And rest assured that we always keep our job sites clean and tidy.

There will be many decisions to make, and you may come across some unexpected adjustments or unknowns, but we will be there to support you at every stage of the project! You’ll have a dedicated point of contact who can answer any questions or concerns you have at any point.

Most important to keep in mind throughout the entire process: the results from your renovation will be worth it and will bring you joy for years to come!

We hope this guide helps you feel more relaxed, confident, and ready to renovate. Our entire team is here to help and guide you.

Get in touch with us to work together on your next renovation – we look forward to working with you soon.