THE ART OF RENO: The pitfalls and positives of home renovation

Oct 28, 2020 | News

If you are thinking of tackling a home renovation project, there are many pros and cons you will soon discover. Renovating is rewarding and gruelling – often in equal parts! Here are a few of the commonly discovered things that could surprise you on your renovation journey.

Budget blow-out

Yes, you can quote a job but more often than not, you will exceed this quote. You might be doing the work yourself and saving on trade labour, but materials, equipment hire or purchase, council permits, insurances, and various other outlays all add up.

Living in a construction zone

You and your nearest and dearest will be living in a war-zone. Well, not quite, but it could likely be dusty, unorganised and potentially dangerous for little ones, with sharp equipment, poisons, exposed wiring, and so on. If you are happy to “live rough” for the foreseeable future, great! If you prefer your creature comforts, you might want to find temporary accommodation while you renovate.

Being realistic about your expectations

It takes real skill to execute a decent renovation. You or your architect have to design the shape of the space but then you have to decorate it. If you are not good with colour, texture, balance, proportions, etc, this can go horribly wrong and look nothing like those pictures on Pinterest you’ve been pinning for the past year. There is also a high degree of skill in trades such as carpentry, tiling and the practical skills of plumbing and electrics, which really pay off in the long run if you want your renovation to look slick and well-finished and operate to a high standard.

Working and renovating – two full-time jobs

Renovating is busy work – organising materials, permits and labour, all the while working your own nine-to-five can be exhausting.

Juggling trades

Timing is the key to an efficient and successful renovation. Book your trades early, hold them accountable to the schedule and keep things moving smoothly.

Cost vs quality

Balancing your ideals with your budget can be a fine art. There are so many beautiful products and finishes to choose from these days – and they vary in price greatly. Be savvy with your choices. With a bit of creativity, you can create a wonderful look, minus the exorbitant price-tag.

Permits and permissions

Council permits take time and money. Factor these things early and begin the permit process with your local council as soon as you have plans drawn up and confirmed. There’s no point ripping down your first wall if the council isn’t going to grant approval for four months.

So fresh, so clean

On a positive note, at the end of the renovation, you will have likely improved your home’s aesthetic, functioning and its value. The renovation journey can be satisfying and rewarding but it is not for the fainthearted.