Mar 26, 2015

Whether you're bringing a room into this decade, or simply spicing things up, home renovations are exciting, but can be daunting if you don't start with a clear plan and focus.

Here are some suggestions to keep in mind before starting your next home reno:

Find out if you need a permit. Depending on the project, you may need a building permit before beginning work. When dealt with ahead of time, this is rarely an issue. However, it can drain time and funds mid-project if overlooked. Based on the municipality, projects requiring a permit can include: structural alterations (for example, taking down walls to open up a space, adding windows where there were none before, etc.), outdoor decks, garages, sheds, and upgrades to the plumbing system, among others. Always check before you start your project!

Focus on one room/area at a time. Trying to accomplish too much at once can overwhelm you and become discouraging. Consider starting with one of the smaller, more straightforward projects first. This will give you a sense of accomplishment upon completion and help you gain momentum for your next projects.

Do your research before hiring a contractor. If you're looking to tackle a big job, hiring a contractor may be a wise decision. To pick the best team for the job, be sure to interview a few contractors before making your decision. After the interviews, don't forget to check their references. Asking questions like: Did they arrive to the job site on time everyday? Were they professional? did they arrive to all scheduled meetings? How did they handle problems? This will give you a good sense of the type of individuals with whom you'll be working.

Consider sourcing your own materials. Sourcing your own materials can cut down immensely on the overall cost of a reno project. Rupurpose materials you already have, or consider reclaimed pieces.

The Ottawa General Contractors will be at the Ottawa Home & Garden Show, ready to answer all of your questions about your next home project. For a one-on-one consultation with the team, be sure to stop by the Ask the Expert Zone on Saturday, March 28th from 1-4pm. Consultations are first-come, first-served, so don't be late! Don't have tickets yet? Get 2-for-1 on Facebook and get ready to start on your next home improvement project!