Renovating your home is a time filled with excitement and anticipation. Whether you’re doing a little update on your current home, or completely gutting a new house to turn it into your forever home, there’s no denying how fun it is to pick out new colours, materials, fittings and fixtures. However, without careful planning, thoughtful choices and a solid list of priorities, a renovation can go awry and leave you feeling disappointed in the finished product.
Here are seven common renovation regrets, and how you can avoid them.
1. Specialty finishes on hardware
Tapware, handles and permanent lighting fixtures in trendy colours may seem like a fashion-forward decision at the time of renovation, but of-the-moment style obsessions can date very quickly and be expensive to replace. Opt for timeless classics such as stainless steel, chrome, black and white.
2. Custom-built cabinetry for tech
Technology changes so quickly that there’s no point investing money into custom cabinetry for appliances and technology that might change in size and style as science advances. Instead, choose cabinetry that can be used for multiple purposes, or be easily adjusted.
3. Graphic tiles
Tiles are a very permanent part of walls and floors, and those that feature graphic prints are the first to date. Keep your tile selection neutral and timeless, rather than trendy, for a home that doesn’t date.
4. Renovating the moment you move in
When you first walk into a new home there will be architectural or design features that jump out at you, and you might be tempted to change them immediately. However, it’s better to live in the property for a year to get a good feel for it, and give yourself time to identify any serious problems that come crawling out of the woodwork once the property is lived in. This way you will have a better idea of what changes would make the home more functional for you and your family.
5. Turfing out the bath
Although you and your family may all be adults who prefer a shower over a bath any day, just remember that should you sell your home at any point in the future, a bath is essential to a family with young children and could add value to the property.
6. Not achieving ‘the look’ you were going for
Blindly buying and installing things that you believe will play into ‘the look’ you’ve chosen for your home doesn’t always work. You’re better off creating a mood board with paint chips of the colours you want to work with, fabrics you want to introduce and images of rooms and styles you want to emulate in your own home. This will help keep you on track when it comes to buying new things and making design decisions.
7. Not prioritising functionality
Before you even touch a hammer or paint chip you should have a good understanding of how you want your home to function. You need to know what purpose each room must serve, and prioritise the must-haves above the nice-to-haves. Knowing exactly what is most important to you and your family before you begin means that, should you need to compromise during the renovation due to budget or time constraints, you’ll know where to start trimming space or resources first.
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