Home Remodeling: 5 Questions for the DIY Designer

Remodeling your home can be a difficult and daunting task – especially if it’s your first time. Many homeowners are hesitant to change/update their home because their afraid they may accidentally do it incorrectly or because they might unintentionally decrease the value of their home.

Fortunately, we’re here to help. Homeowners can rest assured in their decision to remodel their home, as long as they do their research beforehand. Before you tear up the floors or knock out wall, ask yourself these five questions. If you don’t know the answers, keep your hammer in your belt until you find them out:

1. Where will I get the Most Bang for My Buck? Before you decide exactly what you’re going to update in your home, you might want to do a little research. Sure, you could spend thousands of dollars redoing the spare bedroom but will that mean the highest ROI (return on investment) in the end? Probably not. The general consensus is remodeling kitchens and bathrooms (especially ensuite bathrooms) will give you the most bang for your buck.

2. What is the Fastest Way to Update the Look of My Home? If you want to give your home a quick, easy and affordable face-lift, painting is definitely the way to go. A few coats of neutral-colored paint can significantly update the look of any room. Likewise, replacing old, worn-out carpets with new carpets (or hardwood if you can afford it) is also a very quick way to increase the value and improve the look of your home.

3. What Should I be Aware of Before Remodeling? One of the biggest mistakes homeowners make when remodeling is lack of research. You plan to tear down a wall, rip up the flooring or insert a fireplace but have you checked with a professional to make sure your home’s structure can support these types of things. What if you tear down a load-bearing wall? What if you hit a pipe while redoing the floor? What if you purchase a new fireplace only to find out your home can’t support one? All of these types of questions should be answered prior to planning.

4. How Much is this Going to Cost? Another big mistake homeowners often make is planning before planning. We realize that doesn’t make any sense but many homeowners will plan exactly what they want to do and prepare to do it before they actually plan the financial aspects of the remodel. All the initial planning is irrelevant if you can’t afford it. We suggest planning a budget before anything else.

5. Do I have the Expertise/Knowledge to do this Myself? Everyone wants to believe they’re a handyman (or handywoman) but the reality is, most of just aren’t. Ask yourself whether you honestly know how to rip up flooring and replace it with hardwood. If the answer is no, hire a professional. Trust us, it’s a lot easier (and less expensive) if you just hire a professional the first time around – plus it will save you the embarrassment of having to explain to the professional what you did wrong and how they’re going to fix your mistakes.

Caroline Marvin is an expert when it comes to home remodeling. She recently became certified in kitchen remodeling and bathroom remodeling. Now, she shares her tips and tricks with the readers of

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