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Renovating Your Rooms

Whether you are changing your basement into a living room, or converting your garage into a guest suite, you have the space to change the layout of your house without going through a complete addition. Here is a quick process that you can follow to help your renovation aspirations:

  • Plan First Demo Later — As enticing as taking a sledgehammer to your walls is, hold off for now. I’m not saying that you won’t have the opportunity to have a little demo fun, but take the time to think out what you are going to accomplish during the renovation process. What are your goals? What is your budget? How much time do you have to complete the project? All of these questions come into play when you plan out your renovation. Draw on a napkin, a piece of paper, or have a professional help navigate the planning process. Either way, each minute of planning saves ten minutes of construction later.
  • Time To Get Dusty — If you talk to any home owner who has gone through the renovation process, they love the demo portion the most. However, there is a lot of planning that goes into the demo. Make sure that you start small to make sure there are no electrical wires (electric should be isolated or turned off), no water lines (shut off if there are), no load-bearing beams involved, and make sure you have a dumpster or another way to get rid of the material you are demolishing with that hefty hammer of yours.
  • Make or Move Those Walls — You may not have the ability to move mountains, but you have the chance to move walls. Without going into too much detail on how to move or make a wall, I would highly suggest that you contact a professional contractor if you do not know what you are doing. As you move walls, you will be tasked with the electrical, plumbing, and (if applicable) ductwork. So, please consults a professional contractor if you aren’t an expert in the field. If you make a mistake on framing out the wall, you could significantly impair the integrity of the home. However, if you know what you are doing, be precise in your measurements and cuts and follow the plan accordingly.
  • Close Up With Dry-Wall — If you are following the permit requirements, a second inspection is required to move from the framework to closing the walls with dry-wall. Hang the dry-wall as accurately as possible; you want to make the best use for the big/long pieces of sheetrock. Screw in the sheetrock to the studs evenly throughout (each screw in line with the others vertically and horizontally if possible). Thin out the joint-compound as best as possible to avoid any divots or rises throughout the walls, and prime the walls prior to painting.
  • Pant Then Floors and Finally Fine Carpentry — It’s time to bring your project to an end, but you have to make sure you paint prior to putting down the flooring and installing the molding. The idea behind this process rests with the notion that paint droplets will fall on the newly installed floor and smear on the molding if not done in this order.

In summary, the renovation process is not one that will significantly tax your budget in comparison to a full addition, but it is a project that can completely alter (and improve) the layout of your home. Again, as a strong suggestion, if you do not know how to complete any of these steps please take the time to contact a professional (licensed) contractor. Remember to plan out your project and adhere to that plan as best as possible to finish the job efficiently and accurately. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have questions, comments, or concerns with regard to a renovation project.

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