It’s always exciting planning and getting stuck into a home improvement project. Everyone has their own ideas about what changes and enhancements will suit their home, maybe a new kitchen, perhaps updating the bathroom or adding more living space with an extension.
Before getting totally carried away there are lot’s of things to consider including avoiding costly mistakes.
Don’t get sucked in by fads and trends
It’s really important to distinguish between fads, trends and genuinely good, sound ideas. For example, open plan living areas maybe popular with your friends and are splashed all over lifestyle magazines. But it may not necessarily be the right way of living for you. Consider what you use the space for, consider the habits and preferences of everyone who lives there before making big decisions.
Starting improvements too soon
Often when you buy a new home, you fix in your mind a picture of how it all needs to be and what work needs to be done to achieve it, often scarcely waiting to unpack your belongings before getting stuck in. Aside from the obvious financial implications of having just bought a house, this approach can lead you to prioritise things incorrectly.
Take your time, get used to the dynamics of your new home. Think about things like… Which side of the house the sun comes up? Which room do your family like to do most of their living in? Are there any appliances or rooms which require maintenance that you weren’t initially aware of? After just a few months you’ll have a much better picture of exactly what needs to be done and what order you want to do it.
Doing to much
All home improvement projects need balance. You need to balance what you want and what you can afford. Always remember that when undertaking significant home improvement works, costs have a habit of swelling beyond the initial quotations, and costs quickly mount up. Avoid spreading yourself to thinly across too many projects, you don’t want to be in a position where you are having to sacrifice quality to remain in budget.
Rushing into financing
Similar to the above point, homeowners’ eyes can often get bigger than their wallet. Sometimes in eagerness to get exactly what you want it can be easy to become reckless with whom you apply for credit. It’s not that taking out finance for home improvements isn’t justified – it often is, especially as improvements often add value to your home.
Be sure to ask yourself the right questions first, be responsible, think about whether you can afford the repayments? Ask yourself if they will put undue strain onto your monthly budget? If you’re okay on these fronts, and decide that a home improvement loan is justified, it’s still worth doing your homework to ensure that you get the best possible deal. Price comparison sites, and even peer-to-peer lenders can be the best way to go.
Neglecting to check or apply for planning permission
This is a horror best avoided. Neighbours can sometimes be petty and so you want to be 100% sure you have all your bases covered when it comes down to planning permission, rules and regulations. This is particularly important when adding extensions or carrying out remodelling.
You can apply for planning permission quickly and easily online, but it’s always worth putting a quick phone call into the local council, explaining what you’re planning and trying to establish if there’s anything you need to be aware of. It’s likely you’ll be alright, but if undertaking significant renovations then it’s important to have peace of mind before you get started, this is not something you want to get caught out on later!
Collaborative post with Lending Works