How to Plan Your Exterior Renovation

Beginners can find exterior remodeling challenging. Renovation TV shows make it look easy and fast, but it can be anything but. There are many horror stories of newbies plagued by subpar work, cost overruns, and dishonest contractors. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

Planning is the key to successful exterior renovations. A clear vision of the end result, understanding the process, and hiring a reputable contractor is the foundation of a great renovation.

Before you sign an exterior remodeling contract, do your due diligence. Consider the factors that will deliver the best value, and plan how you’ll achieve it.

A clear guide is a great resource for remodeling beginners. An outline of the necessary steps you need to take before embarking on an exterior renovation project is more important than a how-to guide for the construction work itself. Lack of proper planning is the main cause of renovation woes. Thankfully, it’s totally preventable.

The Process
Planning starts with you identifying the desired outcome for the exterior remodeling project. Be sure to be realistic and set an accurate budget. Make a list of necessities, like-to-haves, and dream items. Focus on what your exterior needs and if your budget allows, splurge on the other two categories.

How to Set a Budget
Be detailed and realistic. Use line-by-line examples to set up your budget. Break down what you anticipate to spend in detail. Consider:

  • Tools and rentals
  • Licensing and permits
  • Utility fees
  • Landscape disruption
  • Waste and demolition
  • Labor costs
  • Materials
  • Consultant fees
  • Management charges
  • Drawings and design
  • Financing fees
  • Unexpected events

For remodeling jobs, unexpected events are common. Shingle sheathing may be rotten, sills may have water damage. Factor such things into your budget. Setting aside 10-15% of your total budget for cost overrun contingency is a good rule of thumb.

Don’t Rush
Time is your friend. The more time you spend planning, budgeting, and selecting the right materials, and contractor, the more successful your exterior renovation will be. So, be sure to account for time as well as cost. Remodeling usually takes longer than you think.

Choosing a Remodeling Contractor
As a beginner, you won’t regret the time spent in vetting and selecting a reliable remodeling contractor. You want to click with who you hire as you’ll be spending a lot of time with them. Consider their personality, skills, and experience when making your decision.

By carefully planning out your exterior remodeling project, you can avoid many woes that plague beginners. Apply this process, and you’ll achieve amazing results.