Depending on which side of the fence you sit on. Home renovation can be fun, or it can be scary. Personally, I think it is a fun and exciting process because you can make your home be any way you like. BUT it is a lot, and I mean A LOT of work. You can buy a home that just needs some make-up. Or you can start with one that needs completely stripped down and re-done.
So before I jump into the home renovation tips. Its time for a little back story.
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My husband and I bought our first house 38 days before we got married!!! Yep, you saw that right 38. The listing came in our inbox at 5 pm and I found it at 11 pm that same night. My mom drove up with me to look at it the next day and we were having an official walkthrough with a realtor a or so after that.
Oh yeah and I was talking my mom through how to scan me copies through email of our marriage license so we could email them to the agent in charge of our lone. ON OUR HONEYMOON. Yep, it was a whirlwind but it was totally OK because we were getting an amazing set up for our first home. You might think it was crazy but I was in love and ready to fight for it.
We looked at so many homes it is hard to remember all of them. We even let go of the earnest money we put down on one of them because of some things the seller was not willing to do. But the one thing I am grateful for is that we did not end up in town. We even looked at a few apartments that we would rent if we had to until we found a home to buy.
Wrapping up this very long intro we closed on our first home and the next day was cleaning day. And boy howdy did we clean. The couple who lived there were elderly and had a hard time keeping after the place so there was A LOT of junk that needed to be cleaned out. We took 3 horse trailer loads do the dump. The house was sound, it just needed a facelift.
Ready to get started?
You & Your Spouse Are On The Same Page
This is more important than paint color. A home renovation can cause massive stress on everyone. The last thing your relationship needs is someone being short-tempered and having two people thinking something different.
OVER COMMUNICATE. Even if you are thinking something would be nice but you don’t bring it up. You are setting yourself up for a problem. I am so grateful that my husband and I have very similar tastes. BUT he is also an outdoorsman and he knows that I would not want to live in something that looked like a hunting lodge.
So we settle on a lot of neutral colors and more of a farmhouse/cottage vibe. Don’t put up with something you hate but also be willing to compromise and think about the other person.
Be Careful Of The Home Renovation Comparison Game
Before we get any farther I want to speak to the ladies of the house. Be careful who you follow on all the socials. Instagram and Pinterest can be a dangerous place for the soul if you are young and newly married. There was a few months of time where I saw these ladies putting together their homes with beautiful pieces and I started to have this twinge of jealousy. Then it hit me. These women are in their mid 30’s and are in a whole other place financially. So don’t let what you see out there cause you to feel bad about what you do have.
Make A List Of The Projects
Make a list of all the projects you have in your mind. Even if it is just to paint a room and call it good.
Then I want you and your spouse or other adults who live with you to make the decisions of what order things will be done together. There is nothing harder than one person living with something that they thought would be done sooner. It will cause resentment and strain that does not need to be there.
This blog post about how to plan a project will help you go a little bit deeper into how to set dates for each project and build a timeline for what needs to be done.
Decide On A Budget
We have never gone into debt for any of our projects and I advise you not to either. Look at how much cash you have available to you. Or if there is not much available. Save the money it will take and slowly work through the projects.
Go through the list of projects you made and figure out how much each project will cost on their own. That will help you know where to start in your home renovations.
Assume that there will be surprise issues and some things might cause you to spend more then you thought. If you don’t then all is good.
So many people want to jump in and take out everything they hate. Then before you know it your home is torn apart and your home is almost unlivable. Not many people have the ability to live somewhere else while redoing their home. SO… You need to be careful.
First, think about what NEEDS to be done first. Not just what you want to have done. If there are any issues that could cause more damage if left undone. Then start there.
Our kitchen was awful but we still needed a way to eat and have food on hand. So we could not just go taring everything out. We got everything clean and usable before we started renovating.
The Order We Started
Life for me was WAY MORE complicated for me then it is now. I was going to school full time working two part-time jobs and also running the rabbitry. BUT we moved in June so school was done for a few months and that also meant I was not working my work-study job. So I only away from home for about 15-20 hours a week. So being the pusher that I am I jumped in and had a few projects going at once.
Let me first say that I had rooms that I worked on and Brian had his own projects. We could work together but there was not much I could do to help with the projects he was working on so we stayed out of each other’s way for the most part.
- The kitchen/dining room got walls got a coat of painted and cabinets went from a dark brown wood finish to the distressed off white.
- While at the same time I was painting the living-room which doubled as our bedroom for a few months.
My sweet husband has a lot of things he wanted to re-do in the three bedrooms and master bath. Let’s just say when you are newly married and going through a lot of changes there is such a thing as redoing to much. He started in our master bedroom and literally drywalled all three rooms redid the ceilings and replaced all the floors.
I did step in and help with painting but those rooms were all him.
There were small got done as we went along but we are still improving and re-doing certain spaces and I think that is part of owning a home. You will never be completely done.
Know that everything comes in stages and every situation is different. You will get there just not as quickly as you might like and that is ok too. Be patient and love the process of making your home yours.
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