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10 Things to Consider Before Buying a Renovation Property
by T. Lopez on Dec 3, 2019
Buying a renovation property and working on it can be extremely rewarding. You’ll develop and build a home for yourself, and it will feel all the sweeter when the end product is sitting pretty in front of you. Before you get there, though, you’ve got a long road to travel, one which will likely be littered with triumphs and plenty of mistakes. Before you embark on your renovation journey, it’s a good idea to think about whether this avenue is for you. Here are 10 things to consider before buying a renovation property.
1. Its condition
While you should expect a certain degree of “fixer-upper-ness” in a renovation property, you should still be cautious when it comes to the place’s overall condition. After all, you don’t want to be spending more money than you’re likely to make, nor do you want this to be an extended or neverending project. Start by thinking about damp-proofing; damp is one of the most common issues with renovation properties.
2. Your budget
When you’re choosing a project, it’s important to keep in mind exactly how much money you have to play with. Is this going to be a low-budget renovation or do you essentially have limitless funds? Allocating your budget and making sure everything is in the right place financially will dictate the nature of the rest of your renovation project. There are lots of ways you can pay for your renovation, such as second mortgage solutions, so make sure you look into every avenue.
3. The area
Where the property is actually located is a crucial piece of information for your renovation. This goes double if you’re looking to resell when you’re finished rather than simply living in your completed home. Before you begin - or while you’re renovating - make sure you extensively research where the property is located and whether that will have a bearing on what decisions you make. Sometimes, certain areas are better for renovation properties than others.
4. Your timeline
Realistically, how much time can you devote to your renovation project? Will you be able to spend hours on it per day? Is it possible for you to book time off work so that you can devote yourself more completely to the project? Before you start renovating, it’s a good idea to look into constructing a timeline for yourself. What do you expect to have accomplished at each stage? You’ll naturally deviate from this timeline, but as a guide, it’s very helpful to have.
5. Your expectations
Keeping your expectations in check is very important when you approach a renovation property. After all, you’re probably not going to be able to get a two-hundred-year-old house to look like one that was built in the last decade. Similarly, you need to have realistic expectations of both time and money management; don’t overestimate or underestimate what the project will need in order to be successful. Make sure you don’t go into the project with a cast-iron idea of exactly how it will end up.
6. Your designer (or builder)
Sometimes, it’s a good idea to look into hiring someone to help you with your project. You’ll save a significant amount of money if you’re able to do it all by yourself, of course, but there’s absolutely no shame in getting someone on board to assist you with the trickier parts. When you do this, make sure you hire someone from the very beginning; bringing a professional in partway through a renovation will only confuse matters and muddy your vision (and theirs).
7. Your health
Believe it or not, renovating a property can have a serious effect on your mental health. While the finished product can work wonders for your self-esteem and your general happiness, it’s common for people not to look after themselves during renovation projects due to how much work is required. Make sure you’re taking regular breaks; always have snacks ready for when you run out of sugar, and when you feel yourself growing tired, don’t “push through”.
8. The property’s measurements
It’s all too easy to grow excited about a new favourite piece of furniture or a particular feature you’ve had your eye on for some time. Be careful: it may not even fit. Make sure you’re taking regular measurements as you go. First, gauge the size of the home and each overall room. Once you’ve done this, you can start planning what furniture will go where. It’s no good buying a bed if it simply won’t fit in the bedroom. Plan extensively, because you don’t want to run into unforeseen problems with measurements.
9. Your intentions
Whether or not you actually intend to live in the property should have an effect on what you’re doing with it. If you’re looking to stage your home sale, then you’ll need to have different furniture and interior design motifs in mind than if you’re looking to move in. After all, your personal tastes probably aren’t quite what your buyers are looking for, especially if they’re particularly idiosyncratic. Think carefully about what you’re actually going to do with the property before and during the project.
10. Your workload
It’s very important to pace yourself while you work. Even if the project isn’t having a deleterious effect on your mental health, you still shouldn’t pile too much on your personal plate. Whoever might be helping you, don’t be afraid to delegate; that’s what your “colleagues” are here for, after all. Take on as much of the work as you can manage, but speak regularly to those helping you out to see how the work could be divided up between you.
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