How to avoid disaster with your home renovations

In 2016, Citizens Advice received almost 40,000 calls from people asking for advice on how they could remedy their home improvement woes. The majority of these were in regards to substandard services, and a lot of people were desperately seeking information about how they could claim compensation. Rather than having to fix a botched home improvement job, follow these tips to avoid stress, disruption and disaster.

Invest in the proper safety equipment
Whether you’re hiring a professional to help you with a home renovation, or you’re taking the plunge and going in for some DIY, make sure that you’ve invested in the correct safety equipment before you get started. Every year, thousands of people are injured because of accidents in the home, so it’s important to take the correct precautions by protecting yourself with goggles, gloves and masks, using the right tool for the job, using ladders correctly, and taking care with hazardous materials.

Get the right permits
A lot of homeowners don’t realise that a lot of the home improvements or modifications that they want to carry out will require a permit. A permit allows the government to make sure that you or the contractor you choose is meeting the correct building requirements and following the necessary safety standards. It can often depend where you live, as some areas can be particularly diligent about the home improvements that you can make on your property. Failing to get the relevant permit could be costly on your part, so it’s always worth doing your research.

Know how much it’s really going to cost
If we had to settle on what was the most common issue with every home improvement disaster, it’s failing to account for unforeseen or emergency expenses. For this reason, you should always make sure that you have some extra cash in your budget in case it ends up that you have to fix electric problems hiding in the walls or plumbing problems in the floors. Most nasty surprises such as this can be recognised quite early on so you hopefully won’t end up having to completely rinse your piggy bank to achieve a successful renovation.  

Know exactly what you want
Every home renovation project is going to ultimately come down to what it is that you want. Being hesitant about your decisions can often mean you’ll change your mind halfway through the project and end up taking it in the wrong direction. With any job, expect that there’s going to be more work than you think and decide whether or not you want to be committed to tackling it yourself or whether you’re going to look for someone to help you out.

Understand when it’s time to hire a professional
Of course, if you do happen to encounter a large problem that requires urgent attention, it may be time to consider hiring a professional contractor. Similarly, if you’ve invested a lot of money in something that needs attentive installation (aluminium sliding patio doors, for example) you’ll want to make sure that the job is done correctly as to avoid any damage to your new purchase. Choose a professional that will be honest, professional and reliable every step of the way, and you’re bound to be surprised at how much easier it is than doing it yourself.