Remodeling… ugh. It’s a love/hate relationship with most people (yes, me included). If your first reaction when you see that word is to cringe inside, then hopefully this post will give you some reassurance that yes, you CAN do it! Get ready for the ultimate pep talk on how you can take these 5 obstacles for remodeling and turn it into a positive experience. After asking for your input on what the biggest challenges were when it comes to remodeling, here are the answers.
Top 5 Obstacles for Remodeling:
- Making a mistake and having it look awful
- Lack of skills/unprofessional
- Not enough time or money
- Living in a mess
- Choosing something that you will hate in a few years or goes out of style
Obstacle 1: Making a Mistake
We’ve all done it. Yes, even me, ladies and gents. You make a mistake so huge that it comes out ugly or destroys a wall or costs an arm and a leg to fix it. Ouch. For example, when we first bought this home the shower in our master bathroom was leaking so we decided to try and fix it ourselves, however in the process we kinked the hot water pipe. However, the good news here is that almost ALL mistakes are fixable and repairable. We hired a plumber down the road to come and fix our broken shower.
When you do make a mistake, the first thing to do is take a step back from the situation while your temper most likely gets the better of you. After that minor meltdown (again, we’ve all done it) take a look and see if you are able to fix the problem. If you don’t know how, ask someone for help. If I’m unsure how to go about something I research, or ask my husband, or someone else with far more knowledge. Sometimes this requires the occasional hiring out of a professional. This money spent is well worth it if you know they can do it right. If you are able to fix the problem yourself, then have at it! This may require more patience or more funds, but ultimately, we tend to learn from our mistakes. So another flip side of doing something horribly stupid while remodeling is that we are less likely to repeat said horrible and stupid mistake. Ah ha! I told you there would be a silver lining.
Another step would be mistake prevention from the beginning. While this doesn’t guarantee that there won’t be any issues during a remodel, if you are able to check and double check your work as you go, this does help in preventing problems from arising.
Obstacle 2: Lack of Skills/Unprofessional
There is good news here. If you find yourself to be one of those who is limited on skills, don’t be afraid to check out the internet. There are tons of DIY videos all over the web on how to do things, such as changing out an electrical outlet to installing a ceiling fan and beyond. Help is there if you look for it! Another option would be asking a friend for help. I have done this when I am unable to figure something out myself. I have also hired it out if it is something I am not comfortable with doing. Money spent on certain professional jobs is ok, especially for things that need to be done correctly or may be tricky to do yourself. You can read my post here for a few things to consider before doing something yourself.
Obstacle 3: Not Enough Time or Money
I relate to this one so well! Have I mentioned before that it has taken us 6 years to get our home to where it’s at today? And even then, things are still not complete! Lack of money is hard. But, early on we decided that to make changes to our home, we would save up instead of going into debt. Perhaps this mindset has really been instilled in me since I used to work at a bank, but I believe that we are happier when not in debt. My husband and I set goals for changes we want to make, then we slowly save for those goals. While this can be hard, it gives us good goals to work towards. In the planning process I always try to find things at thrift stores or other places that I can reuse or repurpose. I have found not only does this save money but it also adds a fun design element to the space. I also plan 10% over budget just incase something happens. It’s the same with lack of time. I’m a working mom raising kids and my husband has his full-time job. Balancing home and life and work is not easy. But, I purposefully set aside time to accomplish the things that I love.
Obstacle 4: Living in a Mess
This is my least favorite… actually I dread the mess! Unfortunately, it is very hard to get around this one. The sooner you accept that there will be some mess involved in a remodel project, the easier it will be. The good news is that remodeling is only temporary. One way to help with living in a mess is to clean as you go. For example, say you’re tearing down a wall. After demo, clean up that wall. Don’t leave pieces of drywall and nails lying around to get tracked around the rest of your house. If you can also keep your project and tools contained to a certain area, that will also help. Organization is key here!
Obstacle 5: Choosing Something You Will Hate
This obstacle can be a tricky one since styles and preferences are always changing. My best advice is to choose a remodel project that is neutral, or something that can be easily changed to adapt to current styles. For example, paint colors can always be changed, while replacing countertops may not be. Pick something neutral that you can accent with cheaper pieces or change up easier at a later time. If you can be flexible and make neutral choices from the beginning, it will make changes in the future much more cost effective and easier to handle.
For example instead of painting my whole hutch turquoise I opted to paint it cream and add my turquoise in the back. When I am ready to change the color all I have to do is pop out the back and paint it a new color…. which I am actually thinking about doing! (post here)
Hopefully taking a deeper look into these obstacles for remodeling has changed your perspective and perhaps created a more open-mind. Don’t be afraid to take on a remodel project. There is always help out there, and good friends and family willing to pitch in. Happy Remodeling!