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6 Surprisingly Simple Tips for Successfully Renovating Your Home

6 Surprisingly Simple Tips for Successfully Renovating Your Home

A home renovation is in equal parts exciting and scary. It’s like an emotional rollercoaster. In the beginning, you’re beaming with creative energy and dreaming of the finished product. Halfway through the renovation, you’re wondering if it will ever be done. Then, once things are finishing up, the stress of coming in under budget begins to rear its ugly head.

While it’s impossible to have a perfect home renovation, you can mitigate stress and increase your chances of success by keeping the following tips in mind:

1. Choose the Right Contractor

Choosing the right contractor is more important than any design decisions you’ll make. The right contractor will make your project a breeze, while the wrong one will leave you frustrated.

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Have you ever heard of contractor drift? It’s a term people in the construction industry use to describe a contractor who slowly disappears as the project progresses. They show up on time every day for the first few weeks and then, as time moves on, gradually become absent. This pushes the project completion date back and ruins any renovation timeline that’s in place. By choosing the right contractor, you can avoid contractor drift alltogether.

2. Expect Unforeseen Expenses

On paper, everything always looks great. The project costs X amount of dollars, it’ll be completed by a particular date, and you’ll need these supplies. Unfortunately, remodeling doesn’t happen in a vacuum. Something always goes wrong and you have to be prepared for unforeseen expenses that accompany these issues.

While every contractor has their own approach, most would agree that it’s a smart idea to build a cushion of at least 10 percent into your budget. So, if your renovation budget is $20,000, aim to come in at $18,000. This gives you $2,000 to play with in case something happens.

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3. Protect Against Dust

If you’re living in the home during the renovation, one of the worst parts of the process is the dirt and dust. In order to live in comfort and cleanliness, you’ll have to actively work on keeping this dust contained to the rooms being renovated.

“Don’t underestimate how much construction dust will permeate the rest of your living spaces through the air and ducts,” says homeowner Deborah Fairchild. “Remove valuable objects from the walls or displays so you’re not having to micro-clean, and seal off any closets that contain clothes, linens, and food.”

4. Handle the Small Things On Your Own

Everyone has their own skills. If there are certain tasks that you can handle on your own, there’s no need to pay the professionals to do it. Not only will this reduce your costs, but it’ll also speed up the process and ensure things stay on track.

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5. Send the Kids and Pets Away

A construction site can be dangerous. While adults know what to avoid, the same can’t be said of pets and young children. Depending on the length of the renovation, you may want to send them to a neighbor’s house during certain parts of the project. This will keep them away from potential hazards.

6. Stick With Your Gut

One thing you don’t want to do during a home renovation project is change your mind a bunch. For most people, it’s difficult to know how something will look until it’s totally finished. Don’t be surprised if you walk into one of the renovated rooms and wonder what’s going on. Trust your gut and wait for the finished product. In most cases, your design will pan out just as you anticipated.

Ready, Set, Renovate

By following these tips and strategically approaching every step of the process, you can enjoy a successful home renovation that’s stress-free and efficient.

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It’s time to renovate!

Featured photo credit: Charles & Hudson via flic.kr

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Anna Johansson

Anna is a freelance writer, researcher, and business consultant.

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

How to Stay Calm and Cool When You Are Extremely Stressful

Being in a hurry all the time drains your energy. Your work and routine life make you feel overwhelmed. Getting caught up in things beyond your control stresses you out…

If you’d like to stay calm and cool in stressful situations, put the following 8 steps into practice:

1. Breathe

The next time you’re faced with a stressful situation that makes you want to hurry, stop what you’re doing for one minute and perform the following steps:

  • Take five deep breaths in and out (your belly should come forward with each inhale).
  • Imagine all that stress leaving your body with each exhale.
  • Smile. Fake it if you have to. It’s pretty hard to stay grumpy with a goofy grin on your face.

Feel free to repeat the above steps every few hours at work or home if you need to.

2. Loosen up

After your breathing session, perform a quick body scan to identify any areas that are tight or tense. Clenched jaw? Rounded shoulders? Anything else that isn’t at ease?

Gently touch or massage any of your body parts that are under tension to encourage total relaxation. It might help to imagine you’re in a place that calms you: a beach, hot tub, or nature trail, for example.

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3. Chew slowly

Slow down at the dinner table if you want to learn to be patient and lose weight. Shoveling your food down as fast as you can is a surefire way to eat more than you need to (and find yourself with a bellyache).

Be a mindful eater who pays attention to the taste, texture, and aroma of every dish. Chew slowly while you try to guess all of the ingredients that were used to prepare your dish.

Chewing slowly will also reduce those dreadful late-night cravings that sneak up on you after work.

4. Let go

Cliche as it sounds, it’s very effective.

The thing that seems like the end of the world right now?

It’s not. Promise.

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Stressing and worrying about the situation you’re in won’t do any good because you’re already in it, so just let it go.

Letting go isn’t easy, so here’s a guide to help you:

21 Things To Do When You Find It Hard To Let Go

5. Enjoy the journey

Focusing on the end result can quickly become exhausting. Chasing a bold, audacious goal that’s going to require a lot of time and patience? Split it into several mini-goals so you’ll have several causes for celebration.

Stop focusing on the negative thoughts. Giving yourself consistent positive feedback will help you grow patience, stay encouraged, and find more joy in the process of achieving your goals.

6. Look at the big picture

The next time you find your stress level skyrocketing, take a deep breath, and ask yourself:

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Will this matter to me…

  • Next week?
  • Next month?
  • Next year?
  • In 10 years?

Hint: No, it won’t.

I bet most of the stuff that stresses you wouldn’t matter the next week, maybe not even the next day.

Stop agonizing over things you can’t control because you’re only hurting yourself.

7. Stop demanding perfection of yourself

You’re not perfect and that’s okay. Show me a person who claims to be perfect and I’ll show you a dirty liar.

Demanding perfection of yourself (or anybody else) will only stress you out because it just isn’t possible.

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8. Practice patience every day

Below are a few easy ways you can practice patience every day, increasing your ability to remain calm and cool in times of stress:

  • The next time you go to the grocery store, get in the longest line.
  • Instead of going through the drive-thru at your bank, go inside.
  • Take a long walk through a secluded park or trail.

Final thoughts

Staying calm in stressful situations is possible, all you need is some daily practice.

Taking deep breaths and eat mindfully are some simple ways to train your brain to be more patient. But changing the way you think of a situation and staying positive are most important in keeping cool whenever you feel overwhelmed and stressful.

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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