We’re entering home improvement season, with May traditionally being the kick-off month when demand for home projects increases for the summer. It makes sense: better weather, more schedule flexibility with summer breaks and longer days make it easier to get work done on time. Recently, Home Care Expert at Angi, Mallory Micetich, conducted a satellite media tour to talk about how to set yourself up for a successful and low-stress home renovation or remodel.
A video accompanying this announcement is available at: https://youtu.be/C-6sm6nhuUA
Major renovations can be daunting, though. Budgeting, financing, finding pros, figuring out timelines, living through the mess…In a recent Angi survey, nearly 40% of people reported feeling anxious leading up to a major renovation or remodel, but fortunately, there are lots of tried and true tips for how to make a renovation make it more of a walk in the park than an emotional rollercoaster.
Here is some of Mallory’s favorite advice for how to stay calm and have fun throughout the whole process, and come out of it with a home you love even more than before:
May is the start of home improvement season, so high-quality pros are in high demand. In a recent survey Angi did of adults who recently completed major renovations or remodels, the biggest regret was not planning far enough in advance. Planning ahead can help ensure you get the pro you want and you can finish your renovation on time. It can also ensure you have time to set the right budget and prepare for any surprises you may face throughout the process. Planning ahead can really help you remain calm and in control throughout the whole process.
Hire (The Right) Pros
We found the whole renovation or remodeling process to be distinct for those who chose to DIY vs. hire a pro. People who hired pros for the full project were twice as likely as DIYers to report feeling calm both before and during the renovation.
DIYers expected to feel in control (35%) or excited (34%), but ultimately felt anxious (36%) as they prepared for the renovation. So, even if you’re handy, when it comes to the bigger projects like kitchen or bathroom remodels, additions or gut renovations, it may be best to leave it to the experts to protect your mental health and that of your family.
It’s important to know your limits when it comes to DIY projects. They can be great ways to learn new skills, bring your family together or flex your creative muscles, but they can also be risky, dangerous and sources of anxiety. At Angi, we encourage people to think about the three T’s when deciding whether to DIY or hire a pro: time, tools and talent. If you’re lacking in any of these areas, the DIY route can end up being much more expensive, stressful or dangerous than you’d like. In those cases - especially for the bigger renovations or remodels - it’s best to look for a local expert to get the job done right the first time.
Buffer Your Budget
In our recent survey, budgeting and financing caused the most anxiety in major renovations. It’s important to set a clear budget with your contractor and make sure you understand any additional fees you might face, like permits, materials and labor.
Contractors are great at what they do, but unfortunately they can’t see through walls or under floors, so they’re not always able to anticipate every electrical, plumbing or pest issue that may pop up once they start working. A good rule of thumb is to include a 10% buffer in your budget to ensure you have the ability to cover any surprises that may pop up along the way.
Give Yourself Space
It’s one thing to live in your own clutter (no judgment), but it turns out renovations make bad roommates. Over one-third of people who lived in their home through the full renovation process reported fights between family members, while that number drops to 19% for those who only lived in the home through part of the process. People who took a break from the process also reported lower levels of anxiety attacks, emotional breakdowns, and tense moments with contractors.
So, if you have the means and ability to spend some time away from the renovation and give yourself and your family a break from the chaos, it can make the process much more manageable.
Before the renovations actually begin, create a code of conduct with your contractor to start things off on the right foot. Regular, open communication with your contractor is key to forming a positive working relationship and having a calm, fun and successful renovation. Some boundaries to discuss may include:
- Hours when work is allowed to be done
- What bathroom(s) workers can use
- Areas that are off limits
- Worksite organization and clean-up protocols
- How and when the contractor and workers can contact you with questions or issues
Check out the Angi app or visit our website at Angi.com for access to high quality local pros, cost estimates and more tips on how to have the best home reno experience possible.
About Mallory Micetich
Mallory Micetich is a Home Care Expert, with particular expertise in small home living and consumer protection. While currently renting in Denver, CO, she has been a homeowner, investor, landlord and renter over the last decade. She is committed to minimizing her environmental footprint and to small home living, having lived in only properties of 1,000 square feet or less. Mallory is currently the VP of Corporate Communications at Angi, where she focuses on bringing awareness to Angi and what we do every day to help homeowners love where they live.
This data used in this segment is based on a survey commissioned by Angi Inc. and conducted using the online survey platform Pollfish. The consumer sample of 1,000 U.S. adult homeowners all went through a major renovation or remodel within the last five years. The sample was surveyed between April 20, 2022 and April 21, 2022. The margin of error is 3.1% and no additional weighting was applied to the sample. Pollfish’s survey delivery platform delivers online surveys globally through mobile apps and the mobile web along with the desktop web.