Here are some things that you might want to have an open mind about before you start your home renovation.
Giving your house a makeover is a fun process. Especially when the final outcome is better than your expectation. But the truth is that home renovation is not as exciting or pleasant as the kind you see on reality shows. First of all, it doesn’t complete that fast (definitely not over one weekend) and you don’t get prize money at the end.
Going through a renovation at home – without cameras – is not all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a draining process and in certain extreme cases, it can break you. You might decide to pull of the plug midway due to the problems that you face. In order to avoid that, let us share with you some bitter truths about home renovation that no one will tell you.
1. It’s going to cost more than you’ve expected
First, let’s address the elephant in the room, shall well? Your contractor, interior designer and even your partner will be reluctant to tell you this, but there’s a high chance that you’re going to spend far more that you’d imagined in your home renovation. Regardless of your best efforts to stay on budget, you’re going to run into unforeseen costs.
For example, only after hacking your wall, your contractor realised that the pipe is rusty or the wiring system needs upgrading. This is why you need to have up to 20% of your budget go towards contingency – the little extras you didn’t think about. Trust us when we say a lot of people tend to overlook things and when the problem arises, they go through great trouble to come up with the extra money needed. To be on the safe side, it’s best to allocate some money in case of an emergency.
2. Disagreement with your partner will occur
Before agreeing to a renovation, most couple will go through a list of things that they would want to add or remove from their home, and this list is only finalised after both parties have agreed on it. But it is important to remember that there will be changes along the way and this will cause arguments with your partner. Therefore, it’s essential to know that both you and your partner should go into the journey of renovation with an open mind. Whatever changes that may occur, the both of you have to discuss and come up with a solution that will favour both parties.
3. Living on-site is going to be your living hell
If you’ve decided to live on-site while the renovation is going down, we can tell you that you’ll be in for one-of-a-kind ride. There might be times you’ll be without water, so no showering or using the toilet that time. You might even wake up inhaling dust and be surrounded by a total mess. The noise levels will spin your head non-stop. In short, living through a renovation is not for the faint hearted. But if you’re up for the challenge, then you will have a great time. Since you’re there when the work is being done, you can voice out anything that you’re not satisfied with or supervise the contractor’s work to ensure you receive good quality workmanship.
4. Renovating with kids is 1,000 times harder
We know how tough renovation can be on its own. But, if you choose to live on-site, then you just took the challenge a notch higher. However, if you are living on-site with your kids, then we are happily handing the award to you. Going through a renovation with your kids by your side is a grueling task. Apart from taking care of their wellbeing while the house is being torn down, kids are also not fond of shopping for things like tapwares or tiles. Therefore, if you have the superpower to convince them that renovation can be fun and exciting, then we say maybe your journey won’t be completely a rough sail.
5. It might be a never ending process
We know this is something that you don’t want to hear, but the truth is, renovation can be a never ending process. Your contractor will give you an approximate completion time for the renovation, but be prepared to extend it, if necessary. Things like weather is something that we can’t control. So if you’ve decided to start your renovation in December where Malaysia gets frequent rain shower, then your renovation will take longer to complete as wet weather will hinder their work. Besides that, if you opt for built-in cabinets, then this will again require additional time as they can only fix it once the house is fully renovated. Overall, renovation is a long journey that will make you think that it’s a never ending process.
Written by Rubaa Shunmuganathan.