5 Problems you might meet in a renovation

January 6th 2021

We get it – renovations are definitely stressful times! Any mistake that’s made here is probably both costly to fix, or one you’ll have to live with every day for a while. And that’s why it’s so important that a good job is done for you! What can you do to make sure a good job is done? Well, the best thing is to be prepared, so you can plan for any inconveniences, major and minor, that you might meet along the way. So before you go ahead with your renovation, take a quick look through these common problems you might meet in a home renovation, and how you can plan for them!

#1: Breaking the budget

problems in renovation - breaking the budger

This is possibly the most common problem in renovations, and yet it can be so inconvenient and frustrating if it happens! As the renovation process goes along, it’s common to find that some parts of the job might be a little pricier than the quotations showed before. Things that weren’t accounted for, things that no one thought of earlier – all this can put a dent in your wallet. But if you’ve set aside only just enough to cover the initial renovation cost, you could find yourself in a bit of a pickle! If you need to take an additional renovation loan, this would cost you even more in terms of interest, processing fees, and so on.

To make sure you don’t find yourself short on funds halfway through your renovation, it’s best to set aside an additional sum as a buffer, about 30% of the original quotation. So even if the renovation’s a tad more pricey than you hoped, at least you’re prepared!

#2: Unexpected changes in your design

problems in renovation - unexpected changes in your design

You already described what you wanted early on – it’s probably safe to leave the contractors to handle the rest, right? Wrong! In a renovation, continuous communication between you and your team is key! Miscommunications can happen, and without realising it, your renovation team might accidentally do up a home that’s just not what you pictured in your head.

That’s why, during a renovation, you should frequently visit your home to make sure you are happy with all the work that has been done so far. Some even suggest daily visits to your home, just to make sure everything’s okay. Sure, it can get a little tedious, but it’ll be worth it! If you’re unhappy with the workmanship of the cupboards in your kitchen, or your ceiling lights don’t seem to form a straight line, or your ceiling fan is installed a little off from the position you pictured, let your renovation team know about it so they can correct it! After all, it’s way less costly to re-do kitchen cabinets right after they’ve been crafted than to re-do them after they’ve been installed and varnished!

#3: Renovation can’t be completed in time

problems in renovation - renovation cant be completed in time

Sad truth: delays in renovations are also one of the major problems in renovation. There are 3 things you could do to help yourself prepare for this situation. First, never plan to move in immediately on the set completion date; definitely give some allowance for delays. Second, when you’re planning when to move in to your new home, sit down with your renovation team and ask them for a realistic timeline for the entire renovation, and then break down that timeline into different aspects of the renovation. Setting deadlines and milestones can be great too, if they’re agreeable (e.g. bathroom and kitchen to be completed by this date, all lights installed by that date). This way, if they’re behind schedule, you’ll know early when a milestone isn’t met on time, and you’ll be able to plan accordingly. Third, make sure you have a backup accommodation, just in case the renovation can’t even be completed by your planned move-in date (even with the allowance)!

#4: Paying more than you need to

problems in renovation - paying more than you need to

It’s pretty common for contractors to have special connections with companies, and they might be able to get you a pretty good deal on some furnishings! But just in case there’s an even better deal out there, don’t simply take their word for it – do your research and compare the prices you can get by yourself against your contractor’s quotations. You might save yourself some cash and prevent this problem from happening in a renovation.

#5: Realising your “dream home” isn’t what you wanted

problems in renovation - realising your dream home isnt what you wanted

This is one of the saddest possible outcomes of a renovation: thousands of dollars have been spent, the renovation’s all done up, the house is according to design, and yet … it’s underwhelming. It might be inconvenient to move from place to place, there are a couple of areas that are hard to access, or there might just be wasted space you don’t know what to do with. This is pretty common, and yet, it can actually be prevented in the earliest stages of planning a renovation! Hiring an interior designer early in the process might be a good idea – they’ll definitely know some basic rules of convenience and aesthetics. 

But if you’re set on designing your home by yourself, be sure to run through your usual routines (and the routines of anyone else living with you)! Do you like a cup of coffee right before you leave the house? Then maybe your kitchen could have some counter space near the door, with an electrical outlet nearby for you beloved coffee machine! Do you and your spouse need to get up at different times in the day? Consider adding localised lighting for each side of the bed so you disturb each other as little as possible! At the end of the day, what matters is that the house you wind up with is great for YOU.

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