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When I was 12 years old I gave my parents the worst scare of their lives—as well as one of the best presents. The scare? The oven caught fire when I was making an after-school pizza, and while it didn’t spread, the whole house was smoked. The present? I killed that horrid, brown range that was all the rage in the 1970s, and set in motion a major kitchen renovation. (Dad told me to make sure I got the fire a little closer to the garage the next time—we needed new siding.)
While your next renovation project will likely not come out of an unfortunate accident, it can still be daunting and scary. Finding ways to keep organized through it all can quell stress and help you make thoughtful decisions. Here are some of my top tips for staying organized during a home renovation:
Create a Plan
If you’re itching to get that remodel going, please don’t just start knocking down walls. A little planning can go a long way. According to remodeling contractor Highmark Builders, these are some questions you should ask yourself:
- What is the goal of your remodel? (To add value to your home? Make your living space more functional? Just need a change?)
- What do I want the end result to look like? (More open concept? More living space? More light? More storage?)
- What’s your budget?
- What’s your desired timeline?
- Will you be doing the work yourself, or are you hiring someone?
- What tools or permits do you need to do the work yourself?
- Are there plumbing or electrical elements to think about?
- Does your homeowner’s insurance have any restrictions?
Hiring a Contractor
If you elect to have a remodeling contractor do the renovation for you, take some time to do your research.
Angie's List or Yelp, and then compile a list of contractors you'd like to interview. You want a trustworthy, experienced and flexible remodeler. You could ask to visit them at a current remodeling site to see how they work for yourself. Once you’re ready to commit to a contractor, make sure you review the contract thoroughly so there are no surprises later.
Now that the renovation is on the schedule, it’s time to get organized:
- Create a special board on Pinterest to house all your design and decor ideas for the new room. If you’re not into the online thing, create a physical file folder to put all your samples and idea sheets in.
- Set up a temporary space that can serve as a stand-in for the room that’s being renovated.
- Pull out everything that you use on a regular basis, and neatly pack all the other things that can go into storage. If you have valuables or breakables that you want to protect, make sure those are pulled down and properly packed away.
- Use labeled Ziplock bags or small clear lidded bins to organize everything you can--this is especially useful for a kitchen reno. You can see everything inside the bag / bin and everything will have a specific place to be stowed.
- Again, if you’re doing a kitchen renovation, pack all foods by category so it is easy to find what you’re looking for later. In general, aim to keep like items together.
- This is the perfect time to donate things you don’t use or don’t need. There are a number of Goodwill locations all over the state, and there’s also Promise Place, a nonprofit that helps victims of domestic violence, which is always looking for donations.
- Keep an organized list of expenses so you know what you’ve paid, what you owe and whether you’re staying on budget.
- Think about how the renovation will interrupt your schedule, and devise plans and workarounds that can help you avoid frustrations and delays.
- Once the renovation is in full swing, resign yourself to the fact that something will probably go wrong. Having hotels, restaurants or laundromats in mind for the unexpected setback will help get through it.
- Don’t delay decisions and don’t change your mind too much.
Plan for everything you can, and be ready to make decisions to keep things on track. (And teach your kids the difference between a plastic, pizza cutting board and baking stone. Because they all look the same to 12 years olds. This tip will certainly help minimize the risk of an unplanned remodel!)
Need more organization help before, during or after your home renovation project? Connect with Heidi today.
Caitlin Burgess is a former community journalist who now works in blogging and digital marketing, and is a guest writer for Highmark Builders. She loves to organize, craft, and try out new DIY projects she scouts out on Pinterest and local blogs.
Cheers to a more ORGANIZED Home Renovation!!
Operation Organization by Heidi provides customized organizing solutions to 'cure' your unique clutter challenge / condition. Based in Peachtree City, Georgia, This Professional Organizer serves clients one-on-one in the surrounding area of Fayette and Cowetta County:(Peachtree City, Fayetteville, Tyrone, Senoia, Sharpsburg, Newnan, Brooks and beyond) . There are also specialized services to aid long distance clients with virtual organizing coaching services as well.
Email: OperationOrganizationByHeidi@gmail.com or Call: 770-847-0329 to learn more.