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Friday, February 25, 2011

Making Changes to Your Home?

Remodeling can seem like a nightmare waiting to happen. All that construction, dealing with contractors, and even just trying to come up with a good plan can seem like a huge hassle. Unless you’re a pro at remodeling and been through it already so many times you could do it in your sleep, you could probably use a little advice (and even a little encouragement) before taking that first destructive hammer through perfectly good drywall. Here are a few simple tips to help you get started:

First, you really need to sit down and give yourself a budget. Unless you have an unlimited bank account, you need to think finances before you lift a finger, or even begin to try and plan. Figuring out your financial situation will actually help you make a plan, because if you do it correctly it will give you a solid idea of what you can afford and what you simply won’t be able to do. Hint: When trying to figure out how much something might cost, you should aim at the high end. That way you might actually end up with a little extra at the end to do something nicer than you anticipated. Just remember that most people error on underestimating their costs and try not to be one of them!

Start with the planning phase and stay there until you have a good one! You don’t want to go at a remodeling plan with only half an idea in your head or you’re likely to end up with a half-finished, ugly, or even unsafe area in your house. Try to think through every step. You want to make sure you think through the process thoroughly before you actually begin taking out walls or cabinets you could have used. If you are not a great planner, or don’t really know where to start then it’s a great time to get professional advice!

It might sound obvious, but if it’s the first (or even the second) time that you are doing a remodel, professional advice can save you a huge headache later on in the game. You might even be able to get away with doing smaller changes to your house on your own. You can probably replace a carpet yourself without much outside input, but if you are looking at doing anything major make sure talk to a professional. For example, if you are in San Diego and want to do anything requiring more skill like second story additions or a major kitchen remodeling, you’ll want a contractor with a lot of experience working with San Diego’s permitting and wiring laws. There are plenty of great general contractors in San Diego. Also try asking fellow homeowners for recommendations. Good luck!

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