Saturday, 12 July 2014

When not to Remodel Part 1

The temptation to remodel your home is great. TV, internet, magazines and “lifestyles of the rich and famous” all conspire to encourage us to continually look at ways to improve our homes. There is nothing wrong with this – a home is the biggest investment and improving, upgrading and enhancing its value are always good things to do.  But it is important to be sure you are doing it for the right reasons. Remodeling just because it is “the” thing to do is a mistake. You could end up with a home that is better than when you started. But it will probably not be the best you could have done. At worst, the end result could be a home that you are not happy with.

So what are the reasons for not remodeling? Ask yourself these questions and answer them as honestly as you can. The answers you give will allow you to see if your remodeling is being done for the right reasons.
  • Remodeling or a trip to Paris? You may have put the money aside but what do you really want to use it for? What will bring you more pleasure – not just immediately but in the future? The new home will be a source of happiness for years. But so will be the fun of a trip to a long dreamed destination and the memories that will last for a lifetime. Or a swimming pool. Which is really important for you? Which is the one that you need to do now and which one can be done later on? Do you need to remodel now or is it just that you have been saving up for it for year and it has become a focus of your life? Does the home really need remodeling? Spending on remodeling may be the more practical way of spending your money. But is being practical more important than living a dream? Think carefully about this one.
  • Have you thought the problems through? Magazines and TV shows start with the ‘before’ and jump to the ‘after.’ The hassles and discomfort that are part of the middle are often overlooked or hidden. Even with the best of contractors and a large budget, a home remodeling project can disrupt lives. Is this the right time to go in for it? Do the kids have exams coming up? Are there big family events that will be happening at the same time? Is it possible that work pressure will be high during the period when the remodeling will be on? Are there elderly family members or children who will need special care during the remodeling process? Check with everyone who will be involved in the remodeling and be sure that the disruption to lives will be within control. If not, consider postponing the project for a more suitable time
  • Can you really afford this? Most ‘remodeling on a budget’ TV shows, websites and magazine articles focus on theoretical remodeling projects where the real world issues do not intrude. Even those that depict real remodeling jobs tend to gloss over the compromises that budgetary constraints can lead to. Are you going to be dipping too much into you savings? How much will you have to cut back on your current lifestyle and for how long? What will be the consequences? Will you be happier with a more expensive remodel even if it means living in the present conditions for a few more years? Impatience is a natural emotion and can be a good thing. Just do not let it rob you of the home you really want.

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