I Want To Renovate My House: Where Do I Start?

I Want To Renovate My House: Where Do I Start?

Renovating your home is a refreshing experience. You have many beautiful possibilities for additions, extra space, or future get-togethers. The problem is choice fatigue.

Where do you even get started with so many options on your plate? Even after you pick a goal, you still have to take into account finding the right resources to complete your project. While some homeowners are very familiar with the renovation process, newer homeowners often don’t know where to begin.

If you’re considering renovating your house, read on. We’ll break down the basics of home renovation and talk about important details such as gutting, rebuilding, and remodeling.

Where Do You Start When Renovating?

couple looking at flooring options

Renovating your home is a pricey and time-consuming process for a reason. Missing out on a vital step can set you back thousands of dollars!

Most of the renovation process involves planning, scheduling, and vetting. Here are our top steps you should add to your renovation plan.

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Figure Out if You Want a Contractor

Do you want to renovate your home on your own or with professional help? Some homeowners are experienced or former contractors themselves, so eliminating the middleman is easy.

Newer homeowners and homeowners without much knowledge about renovation should consider professional contracting services. 

Think Carefully About Your Space

It’s one thing to buy a new end table spur of the moment. It’s another thing to jump headfirst into a $15,000 home renovation project.

Think long and carefully about the space you want to update. If you’re thinking about changing out your carpet, ask yourself why. If you want a new coat of paint, consider taking a few photos and altering them in Photoshop to review what it’d look like. You want to be 100% invested in your decision before starting!

Set Up a Key Lockbox if You’re Hiring a Contractor

If you decide to hire a contractor, set up a key lockbox. Contractors often need to work very early, which can conflict with your schedule. 

Instead of constantly getting up at the crack of dawn to let them in the home, a key lockbox will meet everyone halfway.

Set Up a Smart Timeline

It sounds nice to have a project finished in a week. Depending on how complex and expensive your renovation is, you could end up waiting a few months.

Review similar home renovation projects online or ask your contractor for a timetable. The more realistic you are about your timeline, the happier you’ll be with the process.

Never Be Too Vague

This tip can’t be stressed enough. Since you’re going to be spending a lot of time and money on this project, the last thing you need is a vague goal.

Vague goals might use broad terminology such as wanting a prettier or bigger home. Specific goals sound like wanting a larger rec room to better house guests and family.

Site plans create better homes. We’re proud to provide custom site plans with the aid of experienced CAD designers.

What Order Should I Renovate?

The order in which you renovate will save you massive amounts of stress. Some parts of the home create larger messes than others due to the materials involved.

Conventional wisdom dictates you start with a kitchen remodel. Since kitchens are filled with piping and ceramic, they tend to create debris during the renovation process. If you want to renovate other areas of the home, starting with the kitchen will also remove the amount of dust landing on new furniture or paint jobs.

Related: General Contractor vs. Subcontractor: What's The Difference?

Why Would a House Need to Be Gutted?

Gutting a house is a term used for renovations that involve stripping away the majority of the home, such as the floorboards, walls, and appliances. Some homeowners prefer to gut their home to dramatically increase its value.

Is It Better to Gut a House or Rebuild It?

Gutting a house is a solid choice for homeowners who want to increase their home’s value, but still want to keep certain aspects. Completely rebuilding your home is another option for homeowners who want to skyrocket their home’s value.
Choosing the best option for you is a personal decision and one you should consider carefully!

When Remodeling Should I Do Floors First or Last?

Always do the floors first. Floors are notoriously dirty and have a tendency to leave debris on other areas of the home as you remodel.

Like the kitchen, you should get the floors out of the way as soon as possible before moving on.

Related: Hiring a Contractor Checklist and Tips

Should I Use a Site Plan?

construction worker looking at a site plan

Make sure to always use a site plan before starting your remodeling project. These tools have everything you need to succeed, such as dimensions, diagrams, and site details.


Renovating your home is a powerful decision with excellent results. Not only will your home feel more personal, you’ll also have a higher home value to enjoy.

We recommend thinking hard about your renovation before beginning. You need to consider factors such as hiring a contractor, the spaces you want to change, and the timeline. Once you’ve gotten started, we recommend beginning with the floors and the kitchen to reduce debris.

Don’t start your home renovation without a site plan! Contact us today for custom site plans with a turnaround of twenty-four hours, Monday through Friday. 



FAQ Answer
What are the pros and cons of hiring a professional contractor vs. DIY home renovations? Hiring a professional contractor usually ensures a higher quality of work and legal protections, such as warranties and liability insurance. However, it can be more expensive than DIY projects. DIY renovations can save money and allow for more personal control over the project, but they require a significant time commitment and may increase the risk of mistakes or injuries.
How can I effectively budget for a home renovation project? Start by outlining all potential expenses, including materials, labor, permits, and a contingency fund for unexpected costs. It's advisable to get multiple quotes from contractors to compare prices and check online resources or speak with a financial advisor to plan your budget thoroughly.
What are the common mistakes to avoid during home renovation? Common mistakes include underestimating costs, neglecting to plan for the disruption to daily life, overlooking the need for permits, using low-quality materials, and failing to set realistic timelines. Avoid these by thorough planning and consulting professionals when needed.
How do I choose the right materials for my renovation project? Consider both aesthetics and functionality. Research different materials' durability, maintenance requirements, and compatibility with your home's structure. It's also important to think about environmental factors and potential allergies to certain materials.
What should I look for in a contractor's contract before signing? Ensure the contract includes a clear scope of work, detailed cost breakdown, payment schedule, timeline with milestones, clauses for change orders, warranty information, and provisions for dispute resolution. It's often helpful to have a legal expert review the contract.
How do I handle renovations in a house with historical value? Consult with local preservation societies or government bodies to understand any restrictions or guidelines. It's often necessary to use specific techniques or materials to maintain the historical integrity of the home. Hiring a contractor experienced with historical renovations can be crucial.


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  • Ryan Crownholm