Remodeling: where do I start?

It’s the question nearly every home owner asks well before, even, she or he has any idea what exactly the remodeling project will be.

Relax, you’re not alone.

Fortunately for us, Houzz contributor Eva Byrne asked the same questions and came up with a comfortable way of focusing one’s remodeling desires and realistic goals.

We’ll share her thoughts with you. (And we’re on Houzz, too. Come find us!) And you can always reach out to us and we’ll be happy to help you.

First, Byrne says, is realizing the biggest initial obstacle is knowing where to begin.

Remodeling: where do I start?“It’s time to step back, gather your thoughts and apply a little objectivity to the process,” she writes:

Start with issues, not solutions. If significant alterations or even an extension are envisaged, take time at the outset to reflect on what’s propelling you to undertake the work in the first place.

Compare what you have with what you want. Where your issues relate to use of space, start by preparing an inventory of the rooms you have now and how they’re used. Next, itemize the spaces you’d like to have and the uses you need to accommodate. Imagine you’re writing the brief for your ideal home.

Maximize your existing space. If you feel you need more space, first check that the rooms you already have are working sufficiently hard before deciding whether to extend.

Boost natural light. If light is your main concern, a light-filled extension might seem a tempting vision. But bear in mind that such an extension may reduce light in your existing spaces.

Manage your storage. Your aim throughout the house should be to achieve storage that’s both convenient and appropriate to what’s being stored.

Turn a “problem room” into a successful one. If there’s a room in your home that’s shunned and avoided, you may well have a problem room.

Prioritize the fundamentals. Tackle issues of watertightness, plumbing, electricity and thermal insulation in the first instance.

Seek professional advice. There’s no end of advice available when undertaking work on your home. Everyone around you will have an opinion, and you’ll find a huge volume of inspiration from a variety of sources.

Stay focused. Whatever scale of work you take on, resolve to stay focused to the very end. Renovation work tends to be a long and tiring process, and you may be tempted along the way to delegate minor — or even major — decisions to outside parties.

Read all of Byrne’s piece here: