Last week on IG Live, I sat down with my favorite contractor to pick his brain about home renovations, including average costs, ideal timing, improvements that give you the best ROI, how he prepares estimates and those annoying supply chain issues. You can watch our entire convo here.
For those pressed for time, here are five takeaways from our chat:
- Renovations are stressful, even if you’re a general contractor (or married to one)! Yes, we can save (some) money by doing the work ourselves and through our relationships with subcontractors, but at the end of the day, a renovation is messy and disruptive. However, when planned well and properly budgeted for, a home renovation can make a huge difference in your quality of life.
- Don’t rush a renovation! I know it’s tempting to do everything right away, but trust me, it’s best to take your time to understand how your home functions and what needs improving. For example, Patrick and I lived in our current home for seven years before renovating our kitchen, even though it was a major eyesore and pain point from day one. We’re both SO glad we waited! By the time we were ready to renovate, we knew exactly how our kitchen needed to function and flow for our family, making the design process much easier. Renovations are expensive and stressful (see #1), so you want to get it right the first time.
- How can you tell if a house has good bones? It often comes down to the “unsexy” components like the HVAC system, roof, electrical wiring, water drainage and windows. You can spend just as much updating and replacing these elements as renovating a kitchen! Make sure to ask about these things before purchasing a home.
- Kitchens and bathrooms will give you the most bang for your buck. Buyers can see beyond wallpaper, paint and flooring, but kitchens and bathrooms are the true “guts” of the house.
- Don’t base your budget on HGTV. While you can get some great design tips and ideas from HGTV, the construction costs are wildly inaccurate, especially on the Main Line.
Thanks Patrick for sharing your wisdom and experience with us and for indulging my many design ideas! PS Feel free to contact Patrick directly for estimates or home reno advice, 610-649-3622.