Four questions to ask yourself before renovating

29 September 2016
By portermathewsblog

Story via @REIWA


Renovating a house is not for the fainthearted. It can be time consuming, effort intensive and often expensive, so it’s important to know what you’re getting into.

Before kick starting a renovation project, make sure you’ve addressed these questions.

1. What exactly do you plan to renovate?

This question sounds easy enough, but you might be surprised at the ripple effect renovating one room can have on the home.

You want any improvements you make to be seamless and fit in with the design of the original home. Modernising one area, like a kitchen or bathroom, may look out of place if it doesn’t blend well with the rest of the home.

You will also need to determine how involved the renovations will be. Are you planning a small upgrade to one or two rooms, or something more extensive like an extension? You’ll need to establish a rough timeline of how long the project will take and whether or not you can reside in the home for the entire duration. If not, you’ll need to figure out where you will stay during this time.

2. What is your budget for this project?

Establishing a budget from the outset and working to it is key. How much money are you willing (and able) to spend on this renovation? Does this money cover your wish list or do you need to readjust your expectations?

Over exerting yourself financially is risky. Be realistic and work to your budget. You can always stagger the project and get to some of the less crucial items on your list later down the track.

3. Will your renovations add value?

Improving a property’s capital value is often a driving factor behind the decision to renovate. If your plan is to renovate so you can sell your house at a better price, then you need to be strategic about what features and additions you choose.

A REIWA buyer’s agent can help you identify what renovations should be carried out. They will carry out due diligence on your behalf so you don’t overcapitalise and help ensure your renovations fit in well with the neighbourhood, street and original design of the home.

As well as being able to determine the end value and research sought after features in your area, they’ll also contact your local council on your behalf to make sure your renovations adhere to local regulations.

On the flipside, if you plan to live in the home long-term and your primary motivation is to improve your personal living experience then you have more freedom to make changes that suit your unique preferences.

4. Will you engage a professional or is this a DIY project?

Whether or not you engage a professional designer and builder to oversee this project is likely to depend on the size and scale of the renovation.

If it’s a small improvement, you might feel comfortable completing the project yourself, however if it’s a big job it’s probably smarter to use the services of a professional like a buyer’s agent to ensure the best people are on the job.

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