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9 Points To Consider When Remodeling Your Kitchen Or Bathroom

So you've made the decision to remodel your kitchen or bathroom. You've looked at tons of images on Pinterest, Houzz, and Google and you have a pretty solid idea of what you would like in your own home. Now what?

Here are 9 points to consider when remodeling your kitchen or bathroom.

#1 Choices, Choices, Choices - During your remodeling project you will make hundreds, if not thousands, of decisions. One important choice you must make is whether you want to be there for every single decision that must be made along the way or would you rather have someone else take care of all those tedious choices for you. Communication is a huge part of the remodeling process and be sure the lines of communication are open in all directions. Another choice to consider: going on vacation or moving to a hotel for the duration of the renovation.

#2 Reasonable Expectations - Let's be realistic: some of the shows on TV right now (various DIY and HGTV shows) completely transform someone's kitchen in under 30 minutes. Ok, we all know it's been edited for TV but many shows elude to the renovation projects being 100% complete in a weekend or over a short period of time. Here's the real deal: most cabinet companies take an average of 4 to 10 weeks to build your cabinets and some take even longer and that doesn't include the design part of the process. Just pulling permits to do your remodeling may take several weeks! Do yourself a favor and don't get swept up in the televised idealistic remodeling job. Talk to your contractor and designers and get a grasp on the real time frame for your specific project. Keep in mind that a fully gutted and rebuilt 175 square foot kitchen generally takes about 9 months to complete and a 120 square foot bathroom takes about 4 months. There is a HUGE difference between pulling and replacing only the cabinetry vs completely gutting the space, pulling up tile, changing or moving walls, moving the plumbing and electrical, etc., etc., etc.

#3 The Dust Factor - No matter how good your General Contractor is, no matter how much you prepare the space for demolition, no matter how hard you try.... dust will be everywhere. Even the simplest of kitchen remodel jobs like replacing cabinet for cabinet you must expect lots of dust. This is a fact and a fact that cannot be ignored. Prepare for it now by removing as many of your soft goods (upholstered items, floor rugs, lampshades, etc.) as possible. In fact, remove as much as you can from the work area and areas close by. Pack up your personal items and get them all in another room behind a closed door. The more you do this pre-demolition, the less you'll have to clean later. Trust me.

#4 There Will Be Noise - Most construction teams start very early in the morning and generally work until late afternoon. However, it is not unheard of for a team to work in the evening hours or on the weekends, too. Many HOA's and Condo Associations have explicit rules governing construction and home remodeling. Why? Noise. Remodeling is a very noisy process and that's from the very start all the way through to the end. If you plan on staying in the home while it's being remodeled, be prepared for the noise. The acoustics of your space also changed when you removed your belongings so the noise became that much louder, too.

#5 Love Is A Rollercoaster - Much of the remodeling process will leave you feeling excited and happy for the decision you've made and other parts, well, won't leave you with the same warm and fuzzy feelings. It's a huge step making that commitment to change your kitchen or bathroom and seeing the "old" being stripped away and the "new" taking shape is very exciting. Be patient with the process because the times that will test your patience will come and how you handle those not-so-happy times can make a difference. Anything that can go wrong... can go wrong. Keep in mind this won't last forever and soon enough you'll be enjoying your newly remodeled space.

#6 Expect The Unexpected - This familar statement is especially true when remodeling. Unless your General Contractor has e.s.p. and x-ray vision, there is no way they (or anyone else for that matter) can see absolutely everything beforehand. Do yourself a favor and include a little extra in your monetary budget - as well as time - for the unexpected right in the beginning of your project.

#7 The Dreaded Change Order - Ah, change orders... when you change your mind about something already decided, there's going to be a change order. Change orders might reduce cost but more often, they increase cost. Change orders may also delay completion. If there's something you've fallen in love with and simply 'must have' for your new kitchen or bath, weigh your love of the item against the time and money it will cost you in the long run.

#8 Money - Money makes the world go 'round. Money is generally the main consideration in every remodeling job. What is it really going to cost? The best advice is know your budget before you consult with your first professional and be

honest about your budget. We purchase vehicles more often than kitchens so the price surrounding your dream kitchen might be somewhat of a shock if you don't have a realistic budget in mind. How do you factor in the unexpected issues and the change order(s)? Simply be prepared and have an extra 10 - 20% set aside for those things that might crop up. Oh, and while you're setting aside a few bucks for 'the unexpected', set aside a bit of time, too. The world is not a perfect place and things happen.

#9 Punch List To The End - The punch list is a list of tasks that must be completed to satisfy the terms of the contract. Grab a roll of blue painter's tape and mark the areas that need to be revisited or make a check list so all the those issues can be addressed. After the punch list is knocked out, make your final payment, close your door to all those workers and then you can sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labor!

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