Home makeover and renovation projects are exciting – but they can also be stressful, especially if you’re undertaking a comprehensive upgrade. Dust, paint fumes, people coming and going, late deliveries, and other delays all seem to conspire, leaving you at the end of your tether. It’s organized chaos, and keeping positive in the midst of the madness can be hard. Try these tips to ease the process, maintain positivity, and keep a clear head.
1. Move Out
When budgeting for your project (don’t forget to add a margin for error and unpredictable extra costs), find out about alternative accommodation and factor any costs into your plan. You may be able to shack up with family members provided it doesn’t add strain to family relationships, move into a mobile home, or take a short-term rental. The latter is first prize. Just search for furnished apartments for rent in your area and you might be pleasantly surprised at what’s available. For example, a search for short term rentals in Toronto turns up some truly luxurious options. The big advantage is plenty of space that you can truly call your own. It might even feel a bit like a relaxing holiday.
2. Don’t Over-Supervise
Supposing that you’ve hired professionals, you shouldn’t need to supervise them every minute of the day. Work in progress invariably looks messy, and the worry that causes isn’t going to do your peace of mind any good. Rely on the builders, kitchen installers and so on to do the job, and do a thorough inspection of their work once they give you the green light. Do look out for messy finishes and loose ends and insist on quality.
Your brief to the contractors you chose should have been clear enough for them to know what you require – you don’t have to watch them at work all the time. Before accepting a quote, you should have checked it thoroughly and ask important questions such as whether quality guarantees are offered, whether materials are up to spec, how your belongings will be protected from mess, and whether they’ll clean up after themselves.
3. Don’t Keep Planning too Open-Ended
Although big projects often run somewhat over time and are sometimes over budget, trying to schedule tasks on an ad-hoc basis will add to your stress. Schedule in advance, and ask for a commitment to stick to schedules. For instance, if you’re doing new electrical installations and are expecting the painters to do their work afterward, the electricians need to complete their part of the job before the painters can begin. Before any work begins, check on timelines and ask whether there are any reasons why the planned time-frames should include a safety margin. It might be wise to include a small margin for contingencies in your timeline just as it’s smart to add a margin to your financial budget for the project.
4. Consider Storing Your Furniture
When your home becomes a construction site, accidents can happen. Professional artisans will carry insurance, but you might not pick up damages until it’s too late to claim. And if several groups of workers are busy at once, it may be hard to pin down who is responsible for any damage to your household contents. Even if everything goes smoothly, having precious belongings in the line of fire will add to your stress. Storage eliminates that concern and should reduce your stress-levels in the process.
5. Make Time for Yourself and Your Family
Through it all, remember to keep your priorities right. You are important, and so are the needs of your spouse and children. Do make time to relax, recharge, and spend time doing anything but discussing home remodelling. Life will return to normal soon enough. Your home life and routines will be disrupted, but your family remains the heart of your home. Keep it that way.