There’s nothing quite like the feeling of taking on a home renovation project for the first time. You feel excited about making changes, you know it’s going to be a lot of work, and you know you’re going to have to put in some long hours.
But, you have to start small. Big projects like a complete redo can be scary, so you start small. You tackle small projects to get used to the idea of doing something out of the ordinary.
It could be intimidating, yes, but it could be a lot of fun! The only problem is that many people have an irrational fear of DIY projects. They feel like they’ll end up with a sloppy, unfinished job or they’ll have no idea how to get started. But that’s not the case at all!
By following just a few simple home remodelling tips, you can learn to love the DIY game. Here are nine more ways to ease into the process and start making your home improvement projects a reality.
1. Learn the basics
Do you know how to use a hammer, a screwdriver, and a level? If so, you’re well on your way to learning the basics of home remodelling. There are a lot of other tools you’ll need to learn as well, but if you can get the basics down, you’ll be thrilled to find that a lot of the other skills are simple extensions of those.
Begin your remodelling journey by learning the basics. This will make the project a lot easier for you and mean that you can focus your energy on the skills you want to learn. If all you know is how to drill a hole, you’re going to have to spend the entire day drilling holes. With a little experience, you can make holes in the right places, and you can focus on your project while putting in just a few hours. Get a screwdriver, a hammer, and a level, and get to work on learning the basics. You’ll be glad you did!
2. Plan Ahead
Planning ahead is the best way to keep yourself from getting stressed out during a home remodelling project. It can feel like there’s a wall of pressure against you when you first get started on a remodelling project, but if you’re under pressure, you’ll likely rush and make mistakes. Planning ahead means taking your time. Figure out exactly what you want to accomplish and break it down into manageable steps. Is there a room you want to expand? How long would it take? How much would it cost? Now you know exactly what you want to do and how to get there.
3. Do your walk-through
The walk-through is a great way to make sure that what you want to do in your home remodelling project is actually doable. You don’t have to do the walk-through when you first start working on a project, but you should do it as soon as you finish any renovations or additions you made. This will make sure that there aren’t any surprises that you didn’t anticipate. It’s also a good idea to do the walk-through if you want to add on to your house or make any renovations to the outside of the house. On the walk-through, you should make a list of everything that you want to do in your house. You’ll want to make sure that there’s enough room for everything you want to do and that it’s actually possible to do.
4. Decide what you want to change before you start
This tip is one of the most important in the entire article, so let’s get right to it: decide what you want to change before you start. You can’t choose a light fixture if you don’t know what you want in the first place.
This is especially true when it comes to projects that are more involved like a kitchen remodel. If you’re contemplating doing a full kitchen remodel and you have no idea what you want to change, you could easily spend years moving from room to room, changing little more than the hardware on your cabinets.
5. Use online resources
If you’re looking for some inspiration or want to figure out which supplies you’ll need for your project, don’t waste your time scouring the local home improvement store. Instead, check out some online resources such as Pinterest, Houzz, and your favourite home design blog. You can find amazing projects and inspiration for almost any home remodelling project you can dream up. You can also check out some of the most popular DIY posts from blogs like Remodeling by Design. This can help you figure out what’s been done and what people like best.
6. Brainstorm and draw up ideas
Brainstorm all the changes you’d like to make to your home and draw up designs in your head. Then, go paper-plan-to-paper and take some notes using a pad of paper or a program like Google Docs. This will help you stay on track, figure out what you need to buy, and avoid forgetting something important. You can also use these brainstorming and design tools to sketch out ideas and share them with your handyman or contractor.
7. Start with the walls
If you’ve ever wondered how to start a home remodelling project, the first thing to do is address the walls. This is where you’ll be putting up drywall, painting, and installing all the fixtures and appliances. When you get started, you’ll find that there are a few easy steps you can take to make this part of the project easier.
First, decide what colours you want to use. You can go with the colour you want to create in the spaces, or you can pick colours that complement each other. You’ll definitely want to choose a colour scheme that reflects your style, but you’ll also want to make sure that the walls in your house match your final colour scheme.
Next, determine how you want to use the wall. Do you want to use the wall for art? Then you’ll need to install a stud finder and a stud finder wall. Do you want to use shelves? You’ll also need a stud finder for that.
8. Think about how you use the space
The next thing to think about when you’re getting started on your home remodelling project is how you use the space. This is especially important if you’re redoing a kitchen or a bathroom because it will impact the size and type of equipment you’ll need.
When you’re starting to think about how you use the space, start with how you currently use the space. If you have a lot of counter space in your kitchen, but you use that space very minimally, then you may want to consider taking out a few cabinets. That way, you’ll have more room in your kitchen, but you’ll be using that space in a different way.
Next, think about the types of things you use the space for. If you frequently use the kitchen table, but you also have a couch in the living room and a desk in your bedroom, then you’ll want to think about reevaluating the way you use your space.
9. Don’t just focus on the existing
Another thing to keep in mind when you’re getting started on your home remodelling project is that you don’t necessarily have to focus on the existing. If you live in a house that was built in the 1950s, for example, then you probably have a lot of work to do on the inside of your house. If you live in a house that’s in good shape, then you may not need to do anything outside of your house.
If you live in a house that needs work, start by figuring out what you want to change. Do you want to change the layout of your house? Do you want to change the style of your house? You’ll be much more likely to make progress and get things done if you focus on just one change at a time.
10. Set a realistic timeline
It’s easy to get excited about a home remodelling project, but you also have to stay realistic. You can’t set yourself a timeline that’s too aggressive given the skills and experience you have. And, even if you do manage to do it faster than most people, that’s not the point. The point is to get a project done that you love. That’s the most important part. So, set a timeline for your project that you know you can meet. This will help you stay focused on the project and not on beating other people’s time records.
11. Get organized and plan your day
One of the easiest ways to make your home remodelling projects easier, and to get them done faster, is to get organized and plan your day. This is especially important if you’re tackling a project as large as a kitchen remodel, or any project that requires lots of travelling.
If you’re not a big fan of the idea of organizing your projects and planning your day, then you may want to try to shift your mindset. There is a lot to be said for taking the time to plan your day and plan out your projects. It will make your life a lot easier and it will make your projects a lot more manageable. And you’ll be surprised by how much you get done when you’re organized.
12. Think about your time commitment
You should keep in mind your time commitment. As you get started on your projects, you’ll discover that you have a lot of choices. It’s easy to get caught up in the process and end up choosing a home remodelling project that sounds easy and fun.
While easy and fun projects are great for the time between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, they’re not really the best things for people who are just getting started with home remodelling. You may want to consider choosing a project that’s going to take a lot longer, but that’s going to be a lot more satisfying when you’re done with it.
13. Measure twice
Measure twice, and then measure again. You’d be surprised how often people measure wrong when they’re starting a home remodelling project. If you have an odd measuring method that you’ve been using for years, you might be off by inches. Make sure you’re using the right measuring tape and that you’re measuring in the right place. Use your measuring tape to make sure that everything in your room is the same size from one wall to the other. Then, make sure that everything in your room is the same size from one corner to the other. If you have cabinets, doors, or other furniture, make sure that it’s also the same size from one side to the other. That way, when you move things, you don’t have to do any measuring.
14. Work in sets
Sets are chunks of time that allow you to spend more time on specific projects in your home remodelling project. It could be a few days or a few hours, but you’ll break up your project into sets and then spend longer on each set. You don’t have to do this with every single project—you can think of sets as a way to manage your time and avoid doing more work than you have to. You’re not going to get everything done in one set, so don’t try. But you can make sure that each set is focused on a certain area of your home remodelling project.
15. Don’t be afraid to learn new skills
One of the best ways to save time and money when remodeling your home is to learn new skills. This isn’t just limited to remodelling your home. There are so many creative ways you can learn new skills, and they’re often free.
You can take a class, read a book, or watch a YouTube video. This is a great way to learn something new and free. If you get bored easily, you should probably give this a pass. There’s a lot to learn, and you’re going to get bored pretty quickly. However, this is a great way to learn something new and get something out of it without spending a lot of money.
16. Don’t scale up too quickly
It’s tempting to scale up as soon as you start feeling confident, but you want to make sure that you’re ready. The best way to make sure that you’re ready is to take the time to get acclimated to your new space. Don’t rush through the walk-through or try to rush through your home remodelling project. Take your time, do the job right, and make sure that you’re ready before you scale up. And once you are ready, don’t be afraid to scale up. But do it slowly and don’t take on any additional projects unless you’re prepared for it.
17. Be patient
Sometimes you’ll get frustrated during a home remodelling project because you won’t be able to do the things that you want to do. That’s normal! It’s also normal if you’re taking your time and doing things the right way. You might need a few more tools or a few more supplies to get the job done right. It’s also normal if you don’t understand how to use certain tools or if you’re doing things wrong. Make sure that you’re reading manuals before you start using tools, and make sure that you’re doing things the right way.
18. Get some help from friends and family
Most people are intimidated by home remodelling projects because they don’t know how to get help. You can go it alone and try to do everything, but that’s a lot of pressure and it’s not really feasible. Instead, ask your family and friends for help. Ask them to bring you food while you work, offer to help them around the house while they’re doing their own projects, and just generally be a part of your community.
19. Don’t try to tackle everything at once
You don’t have to tackle every home project at once. In fact, it’s better if you don’t. By splitting up the projects you have on your checklist and taking on manageable chunks, you’ll be able to stay focused and not get overwhelmed. This will also help you avoid skimping on quality or rushing through a project because you’re in a hurry. Remember, quality takes more time, and you shouldn’t rush it.
Take the leap!
The final tip is to make the leap. You can relax a little once you’ve started a home remodelling project because the only way to get through it is to keep going. Don’t worry if it seems like things aren’t going well the first few times through. You’ll get better, you’ll understand more, and you’ll feel more confident. And once you’ve completed your first project and moved on to the next one, you’ll have a whole new appreciation for the DIY home remodelling game.