We ask our design director Darren James for his ‘Top Renovation Tips’ – here they are…
1. Set a realistic budget
Setting a realistic budget is the first item that should be addressed with any kitchen, bathroom or interior renovation. This will act as a guide throughout the selection process. If you are in experienced it’s easy for budgets to spiral out of control so it’s important to understand the full scope of the project and get quotes for each of the components of the renovation. Engaging an experienced designer and project manager will take the heart ache out of the quotation process and ensure that you budget is maximized.
2. Know the project timeline and scope
It’s important to understand the full scope of what is involved in the renovation project and the timeline – this will result in less surprises and will ensure the process is easier to endure especially if you are ‘living through’ the renovation. As with anything in life knowing what to expect, when to expect it and how to handle it will allow you to make necessary preparations and soften the disruption. Again employing a designer or project manager to do this for you will ensure things run smoothly and on time.
3. Finalise everything before commencement and minimize changes
My advice when it comes to sticking to a budget and time frame is to minimize changes or additions to the scope once the project has commenced. Time is money and ripple effects are costly, not only in time (delays) but in money (extra costs). If trades are forced to make several more trips to site its’ fair to say the overall price of the project will increase. Not only that, but productivity can be effected by trades having to work around each other or work around you. Picture the plumber turning off the water while you are getting the kids ready for school.
4. Communicate communicate communicate
It’s important to communicate with your builder, trades or project manager. Don’t be afraid to ask them questions, but keep in mind there may be good reasons why something is off spec or not quite completed. Always communicate changes in writing and keep paperwork for everything. It’s important to communicate as a family also – if there is something happening that will affect everyone e.g. water is being turned off or there is going to be a delay in the project, keep everyone updated. That way there is no surprises.