Where to Start When Renovating Your Home

Posted on: July 23, 2023

The property that perfectly matched your description of a dream home when you purchased it has lost its luster. Following years of wear and tear and a few accidents, your current home has become incapable of providing the comfort and relaxation your family deserves. The need to pursue home renovation has become obvious.

Of course, renovating your home is easier said than done. You are likely aware that home renovation is a complex undertaking but may still be unfamiliar with the specifics of that project.

In this article, we will shed more light on home renovation so you will better understand what to expect. Check out and follow the steps detailed in this article to ensure your project’s success.

Determine Your Available Budget for Home Renovation

There are different ways to get the ball rolling on your home renovation project, but determining your available budget is the best way to get started. You want to set your budget as soon as possible for a few reasons.

First, knowing how much you can spend on home improvement gives you a better sense of what you can accomplish. You may be planning to renovate your kitchen, but your budget will likely dictate how much you can improve it. This time, getting new countertops may not be an option because they are too expensive.

Setting your budget can also help you save time. Without a specific budget in mind, you may draw up renovation plans you cannot afford. Ultimately, that time will end up wasted. You could have started your project earlier had you known the limitations of your budget.

Now that you know how much you can spend, you can get your priorities in order. You can decide if using certain materials matters more to you than building a particular room feature. Creating a clear outline for your renovation project becomes simpler because you know which improvements matter most.

So, how do you determine your available budget for home renovation? That depends on which funding source you intend to use.

Cash-Out Refinancing

To secure the funds necessary for your renovation project, you can cash out the equity you built up in your property. This option is known as cash-out refinancing. Cash-out refinancing involves taking out a second mortgage that replaces your current one. You can then use the difference between your old mortgage and your new loan to fund your renovation.

Opting for refinancing makes sense because it allows you to get more favorable terms on your mortgage. You can keep your finances simple by only maintaining a single loan, but your debt will last longer if you accept this offer. You must also cover closing costs again if you decide to refinance.

Home Equity Loan

Your next financing option for home renovation involves taking out a home equity loan. The borrower’s property backs a home equity loan and allows them to secure a lump sum to use for their renovation plans.

Home equity loans come with fixed rates and set payment schedules. The stability of home equity loans is generally seen as a positive quality. These loans also give borrowers more time to complete their payments. However, you will only qualify for a home equity loan with a good credit score.


Let’s now turn our attention to the HELOC, also known as a home equity line of credit. Similar to a home equity loan, a HELOC uses the borrower’s property as collateral. That is where the similarities end.

HELOCs have variable interest rates, meaning your repayments can increase and decrease. Because a HELOC is a line of credit, you can keep it open and continue borrowing. According to the Consumer Protection Financial Bureau, a HELOC allows you to borrow within your credit limit whenever you want. Your line of credit will be open during the draw period.

Set Your Home Renovation Goals

Now, with your funding source and budget determined, start setting goals for your home renovation project. You should understand your project’s ambition because your budget is already set.

Some homeowners renovate to address long-standing issues. If your home’s efficiency has been suffering due to leaky doors and windows, you can take this opportunity to replace them.

Renovating to improve home comfort is also a worthy goal. You can ask the contractors to remove a wall between your kitchen and dining room to make those parts of your home more comfortable and accessible.

Pursuing a renovation project is still a wise decision, even if you are planning to sell your home. Buyers tend to walk away from properties that obviously need a lot of work. They typically do not want anything to do with a property that can drain their finances. You can make potential buyers feel better about investing in your home by renovating it first.

Renovating remains a good option no matter what end goal you have in mind for your property. Set your goals now to determine how to proceed with your project.

Decide Which Building Style You Want to Follow

Around this time, you should be preparing to find the contractor who will handle your home renovation. Before you embark on that part of the process, you must decide how to enact your improvements. In other words, you should decide on the building style you want to use.

Start by choosing between conventional and design-build contractors.

Choosing a conventional contractor means you must hire an architect first. The contractor and architect would not be working together directly, so you must relay communications between them.

A design-build contractor assigns workers to your project who are all employees of the same company. Design-and-build firms such as ECO Minded Solutions employ all home improvement professionals required to finish renovation projects. You do not need to look elsewhere to find specialists. As the homeowner, you can step back and let the design-build contractor manage the project.

Those are your two main options when it comes to contractors. Decide which one is better suited to handle your project before you begin your search.

Look for Potential Contractors

Finding the right contractor requires tapping into various resources. Ask any friends or family members in your area for recommendations and add them to your list of potential candidates. You can also use search engines, social media, and review websites to find additional candidates.

Put together a list of candidates, then move on to the next step.

Conduct Interviews and Hire Your Preferred Candidate

Your choice of renovation or remodeling contractors can determine the success of your home renovation project. Whether or not your project can be completed on time and within budget will depend largely on your contractor. The importance of interviewing potential contractors and evaluating how well they can handle your project cannot be overstated.

Begin the interviews by asking about their credentials. Make sure they have the necessary license and insurance to operate in your area. After that, you can start asking questions more pertinent to your project.

Examples of those questions include:

  • How long have you been working in this area?
  • Are you familiar with the renovation projects I have in mind?
  • How will you communicate when the project is underway?
  • Will you handle my project directly?
  • What type of building materials can you access?
  • Can you help me secure the necessary building permits?
  • How do you handle changes in orders?
  • Will you manage the cleanup after the project is completed?
  • How will payments be handled?
  • Can you give me a list of references?

Feel free to add more questions to that list so you can gain the information you need during your interviews. Do not forget to request bids from your candidates. After interviewing the contractors and weighing their bids, you should hone in on the best candidate for the job. Finalize a contract with them so that you can dive into the project further.

Pin Down a Timeline for Your Home Renovation

Now that your budget, goals, and working partners are set, you can start pinning down the specifics of your home renovation project. Focus first on establishing a timeline.

Set a timeline that works with your project goals. If you are planning to sell your renovated home, you should aim to finish the project by spring. According to Zillow, March has recently emerged as the best month for selling homes, and you do not want to miss the window because the project took too long.

You could also set a summer deadline for your renovation to ensure that the high temperatures will not threaten your family’s health and safety. Make sure your renovated home is keeping your family comfortable by setting a firm deadline.

Mention your desired timeline to your contractor and see what they say. You can work together to create a realistic timeline if your initial deadline is too early.

Secure Your Preferred Building Materials

During the interview stage, we urged you to ask the contractors about the building materials they can access. If you already have a specific direction in mind for your home renovation project, you must check if the contractor has the connections necessary for realizing it. Confirm if they know suppliers who can provide your desired building materials.

Sustainable building materials are ideal for any renovation project. Unlike the more conventional alternatives, sustainable building materials are free from toxic substances that can harm you and your family. They also make households more efficient, thus reducing the burden that monthly electric bills put on your finances. These materials also help minimize the environmental impact of home renovation.

Using sustainable building materials to renovate your home does not require sacrificing durability or aesthetic quality. They offer the same level of durability and design versatility relative to conventional building materials. Improve the quality of your home renovation by securing those sustainable materials beforehand.

Obtain the Permits for Your Home Renovation

Obtaining the necessary building permits for your home renovation is another matter we alluded to in this section. Contractors with extensive experience working in a particular area can secure building permits faster. They can help you navigate the permit process and significantly reduce your waiting time.

You should also carve out room in your budget for building permits. The exact cost to obtain your building permits will depend on the scope of your project. Still, you should know that these permits regularly cost homeowners thousands of dollars.

Homeowners and contractors can also pick up over-the-counter permits to expedite their projects.

Over-the-counter permits are available for bathroom and kitchen upgrades, roof replacement, and other common household repairs. They are most helpful during the times that unexpected issues pop up.

Find a Temporary Home

Finally, you need to find a temporary one before construction work begins on your home. Staying in your home while it is undergoing renovation will only inconvenience you and the workers. The timeline and budget for your project may also grow because your constant presence at the property is slowing down the renovations.

Moving to a temporary home can be troublesome, but it beats squeezing into your home’s increasingly limited living space. As for the cost, you can make that more manageable by temporarily staying with a family member. Offer rent payments that are reasonable for you and them.

Home Renovation Services in San Diego

Home renovation does not need to be a difficult project. Even if you are renovating for the first time, we at ECO Minded Solutions can make that process significantly easier. We utilize the design-and-build approach to renovation and maintain contact with our clients from the day they first hire us until the project’s completion. We can also secure the sustainable building materials needed for renovation projects.

Do not wait to upgrade your San Diego home any longer. Contact us today, and let’s start working on those renovations!

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