Ten Renovation Steps You Shouldn’t Skip

Renovating your Sarasota home can be a rewarding experience and it can add a great deal of resale value as well. There are some things you should do prior to and during your renovation project. Let’s take a look!

Do your homework — There are many websites available that can help estimate the cost of different renovations, and just as important is to understand the value of them. Some renovations can greatly improve the resale value of your home if you are thinking of selling. Others may simply be for your comfort and convenience. Also, make sure a renovation isn’t going to increase your home value too far above your local neighborhood, as this can make the home difficult to sell in the future.

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Look long term — Making a minor change to a bedroom when you are expecting a growing family may not be money well spent. You need to look at the long-term plan for your home and renovate accordingly. Expecting a parent to live with you? Maybe you need an extra bedroom and bath. Look at every renovation based on what you expect your life to be in the future. This will prevent having to renovate twice.

Expenses — It can be difficult, but set a budget for your renovations and stick to it. You can add a small contingency amount for unexpected things, but don’t keep buying expensive appliances or exotic materials if they aren’t in your budget.

Research your contractor — If you are using contractors for your renovations, do careful research. Ask for referrals from friends or family who have had good interactions with a contractor. Make sure your contractor is licensed and has additional credentials such as certifications or trade association recognition. Also, ask them about their insurance coverage; you don’t want to find out later they have little or no insurance.

Ask questions — A contractor who doesn’t want to answer your questions should be eliminated from consideration. Have your questions prepared in advance of any contractor interview — don’t think you can remember everything. Ask about their qualifications, customer reviews if you haven’t already seen them, and what skills they have which will make your renovation a success.

Due diligence — Before you sign any contract, do more homework. Check out your contractor’s references. Confirm their licenses and certifications are real and current. Check with the Better Business Bureau to find any issues or complaints against them. Ask if you can visit any customers to see work in progress. A good contractor will be proud of their work and willing to let you see them in action.

Read everything very carefully — A contract is exactly that, a document which spells out a contractual commitment by both the contractor and you. Read it very carefully, then read it again. Do not be pressured into signing any document you haven’t had time to review. Be sure everything is carefully described, including fees, overage charges, timelines, cost of materials, and any other agreed items.

Review your design — Make design changes before you sign a work contract; changes after that can and will cost you money because the contractor may have to do additional work or make physical changes to what’s already complete. Make sure you and your contractor clearly understand your desires before work begins.

Learn about the materials — Renovations will use a lot of materials unfamiliar to you. Take the time to learn about them, and be prepared for the amount of time needed to choose materials, coverings, paint, fixtures, appliances, and so forth. If you aren’t buying these materials, make sure their costs are clearly described in the contract.

Communicate — Make sure you discuss all these issues with your contractor. In addition, make sure you and your contractor talk regularly during the renovations. Your contractor may be busy with multiple projects, but there can be problems if they seem to avoid you or not return your calls.

Nutter Construction has over 30 years experience in renovations in Sarasota County, Sarasota, and Lakewood Ranch. We have been awarded Best of Houzz Service and Design awards in 2018. Contact us before your next renovation and let us make your dreams come true. To learn more about what our customers say after our work, visit our customer testimonials!

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LEED AP | FL Licensed Building Contractor CBC060004 | FL Licensed Real Estate Sales Associate BK322256 | Certified Home Inspector HI4630