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Renovating a House: The Ultimate Guide to Modernising a Home

It’s thrilling and fulfilling to work on a home renovation project, but it’s not without its difficulties. Here to make sure your home improvement venture goes off without a hitch is our handy guide.

You can find equipment rentals that offer a wide range of equipment for pipe bender hire, carpentry, building, renovations or gardening . The thrilling possibility of discovering several attractive original elements is maybe the greatest benefit of restoring a house. Next comes the fact that a home’s worth might increase significantly when a renovation job has been completed to a high standard.

On the other hand, there are a few drawbacks. One reason for this is that buyers are willing to pay a premium for a “blank canvas” because refurbishment chances are scarce.

You could end up with a money hole if you don’t know what to look out for, which will deplete your finances and add unnecessary worry.

And that’s why we’ve put together our house-renovation guide: to provide you the information you need to make sure you end up with the home of your dreams.

Here, we’ve laid out the processes of a remodel in an order that’s easy to follow, from removing purchase risk with the correct surveys to handling any unforeseen and costly complications that may arise.

Home Improvements

While no two restoration projects are exactly alike, there are a few things that most of them need. Most remodelling projects adhere to a broad timeline that goes something like this:

  • Do something.
  • Analyze how successful this venture could be
  • Produce a detailed plan for spending your money.
  • Get the word out using surveys
  • Get a warranty and insurance on the renovations if you can.
  • Do some research to see if any awards would be suitable for your situation.
  • Get your hands on an architect immediately.
  • Make a request for a building permit.
  • Locate a Contractor
  • Get in touch with the administration of the building.
  • Systematized garbage collection
  • Fix the access problems and inspect the drains already in place.
  • Consider options for boosting energy productivity.
  • Make sure the structure is watertight.
  • It is important to maintain and fix the original elements.
  • Update the wiring and plumbing.
  • Modify the framework from the inside out.
  • A simple first-aid kit will do the trick.
  • Plastering
  • Restore employment opportunities, second.
  • Current Events from the Outside (it is likely these will have been underway during internal work anyway)
  • An inventory of ornaments and catches

1. Choose a Remodeling Task

The search for and acquisition of a suitable renovation project home can be a significant challenge in and of itself. Since houses in need of updating are constantly in high demand, buyers may spend above market price to secure them, increasing your overall restoration budget.

Getting a mortgage on a property will depend on an impartial appraisal to confirm the house is worth as much as your accepted offer, thus cash buyers have a better chance of closing the deal than those who plan to use a standard mortgage or a renovation mortgage.

While it’s true that real estate is moving quickly, it’s crucial to take your time and make sure there aren’t any hidden problems with the property that will end up eating up your money.

Fortunately, you may obtain a fair understanding of a home’s condition even before you buy it as a repair project, so there’s no need to buy blind.

Auctions and sealed bids with best and final offers are common methods for selling properties that need repairs. If you want to buy a remodelled house at a discount, you should familiarise yourself with the relevant processes as soon as possible.

2. Make a Checklist Before Beginning Your Remodeling Project

There are some home improvement projects that just aren’t a good fit for you, whether it’s because they’re too expensive or too time-consuming.

A renovation checklist might be helpful when evaluating the potential of a home for remodelling. The following are some questions to ask while house hunting:

  • Is there room for an addition, whether it be on the side or back, or in the attic, basement, or garage?
  • Check out the homes in the surrounding area. Is it possible to find out if they have been granted approval for renovations that are identical to your own?
  • Do you feel like you’d be happy living there?
  • What percentage of this work will be necessary for the structure, and what percentage will be for aesthetics?
  • Are there any upper limits on home prices in the area? Do you think your modifications will increase the value of the home?
  • Do you know if any restrictions, such as covenants or planning requirements, prevent you from making the alterations or additions you’d like?
  • Consult with a builder or architect to get their expert opinion on the property.

3. Develop a Comprehensive Budgeting Plan

This is a crucial step if you want to complete the renovation without breaking the bank. Know that you will have to spend money on the following in addition to the standard costs associated with fixing up a house before you buy one:

  • Costs associated with establishing or re-establishing a water supply connection. Possible lack of connectivity if there ever was one. If you intend to stay at the location for any length of time, you will also need access to electricity for things like power tools and basic conveniences.
  • Prices paid for valuations
  • Community Assessment Levy
  • Planning permits, building rules permits, various surveys, structural engineer reports, and any other professional fees should all be factored into the total cost of the project (for example, tree surveys).
  • To prepare for the unforeseen, save aside some money (and when renovating a house, it is absolutely to be expected).
  • For legal representation, you should expect to pay between €512 and €2,111.

4. Determine Which Forms of Surveys Are Necessary

The proper building survey will reveal any problems quickly. Although surveys are typically conducted after an offer has been accepted, they can be arranged prior to making an offer with the homeowner’s permission.

A building survey should point up any potential problems and offer you an estimate of how much it could cost to fix them. Based on the report’s findings, you can decide whether or not to move forward with the sale, and even whether or not to try to make any kind of barter deal involving the property.

If a chartered surveyor suspects or detects something suspicious, they would likely suggest further inquiry.

  • Infestation
  • Collapse or uplift
  • Damp
  • Issues with drainage

A home inspection report ought to specify the materials and processes used in building the dwelling in question (sometimes these vary if the house has been extended over the years). The data gathered here can be put to use during the renovation process to ensure that any new materials or methods are suitable for the home.

Keep in mind that there is almost always a way to fix a structural problem. Finding these early can help you better prepare for the possibility that you will need to boost your budget.

You should also think about how issues with the building’s structure, like subsidence, could effect your insurance premiums and the property’s resale price.

In order to provide an accurate representation of the structure’s current layout, a measured building survey should be conducted. These are typically expected when requesting a building permit for a major renovation or addition.

Don’t forget to include in the cost of a drainage survey, which can put your mind at ease regarding the property’s drainage system and is reasonably affordable compared to the expense of fixing any drainage issues that go undetected after you’ve already purchased the property.

5. Insurance for Remodeling Projects

You need to have the proper insurance in place after contracts are exchanged on a renovation project and you become liable for the site. Renovation insurance, often known as building work insurance, building renovation insurance, or house refurbishment insurance, protects your home and belongings during construction.

In the event of a disaster like a flood, theft, or fire, your lender may refuse to release mortgage funds unless you can provide a warranty and proof of insurance for the property. But this is typically based on the average cost of homeowner’s insurance. Notifying your insurer of substantial renovations is crucial, as doing so may render your regular insurance null and void.

Public and employer liability insurance, construction materials and work insurance, tool insurance, temporary building insurance, structural insurance, personal accident insurance, and legal liability insurance are all necessary for a successful home renovation. The average cost of a project is between €511 and €1,511.

6. Think About Whether a Home Warranty Is Necessary.

While home renovation warranties aren’t usually required, they are often recommended.

Simply put, a warranty is an insurance policy that protects you in the event that problems arise as a consequence of manufacturing, assembly, or installation errors in your home. The average lifespan is eleven years.

It’s best to secure a warranty on a project before too much work has been done, as the cost of the policy is likely to rise as the duration of the coverage increases.

7. Find Out If You Can Get a Grant to Help With Your Remodel

When figuring out how to pay for your home renovations, it can’t hurt to see whether you qualify for any grants that are specifically tailored to your project. Before beginning any work, you will need to submit grant applications. First, you should check with your city hall, and second, you should contact the Central Government through the National Heritage.

Empty homes that have been sitting vacant for two years or more may qualify for reduced VAT rates.

8. Find a Licensed Architect

Next, you’ll need to secure your restoration project and evaluate its structural condition before you can move on to designing your new home and any additions you’re considering. Many individuals find it more challenging to come up with a design for an old property that needs renovations than for a brand new one.

You can save money by designing your own home improvement project rather than paying an architect or designer to do it for you.

However, expert assistance is virtually always required for projects like enlarging or renovating an existing structure, as well as for projects in sensitive locations or on listed buildings.

An architect, architectural designer, home designer, or even a structural engineer can all be helpful in finding appropriate answers to your design challenges.

A professional designer can guide you through the planning permission process, create designs based on your brief, advise on what will or will not be viewed favourably by the local planners (some works might fall under permitted development), and give you a good idea of how far your budget will stretch.

Once you have an authorised design, a schedule of works can be made to guarantee that the enhancements are being implemented in a methodical fashion that causes as little interruption and duplication as possible.

9. The Need for a Planning Permit

Although not all home improvement projects need building permits, you should still make sure you have the necessary consents in place before beginning construction.

  • Get Approval for Your Plan
  • Acceptance of Building Codes
  • permission to list a building.

Starting your work schedule with tasks that don’t need permission from planners is the best approach to stay on track.

If you live in a historic district or on a national register of historic places, you will very definitely be required to obtain approval from the appropriate authorities before making any changes to your home, including alterations to the roof. Before beginning any construction, make sure to contact the appropriate municipal planning office.

Keep in mind that if you provide your local authority’s building control department 24 hours’ notice of your plan to comply with Building Regulations, you can get started on the work right away.

Check to see if the Party Wall Act applies to the renovation work you intend to do along the property line. It’s also a good idea to have a lawyer look at the property’s title documents or lease to see if there are any building restrictions.

10. Find a Contractor

An architect may be able to recommend a reliable builder if they have experience working with them in the past.

If not, you’ll have to hire a contractor to make the necessary alterations (unless you plan on doing all the work on a DIY basis).

Finding reputable contractors is best done through word-of-mouth referrals, and you should always use builders that have experience with projects of a similar scope and complexity. Before making a final choice, it’s a good idea to get at least three quotes.

11. Tell the Building Control Staff

All new construction must adhere to current codes. On or after January 21, 2016, applicants for new extensions must include plans to improve the current portion’s thermal performance as part of their application to the local building department.

12. Create a Timetable for Tasks

A renovation project should never get underway without first creating a detailed plan. It will guarantee the project stays on track and that you and any subcontractors you hire are aware of the proper sequence in which tasks should be completed. To that end, let’s get started on the first phase of the refurbishment.

If you want your home renovation to go as smoothly as possible, it’s important to have a detailed and well-organized plan in place. In an ideal world, it would also include responsibilities and costs.

Listed below is an example workweek. It all depends on the specifics of the project, of course. Consult with a home architect or builder for guidance.

  • Evaluate the current situation
  • Prevent additional deterioration by stopping it now.
  • Money given out free of charge or with reduced tax obligations
  • Consent required by law
  • The integrity of the structure
  • Tearing down
  • Managing Wetness
  • Drains
  • Gaining Entry to the Site
  • Substantial construction efforts
  • Weathertight
  • Exterior
  • Construction on the Outside
  • The Initial Repairs
  • Plastering
  • Exhaustion from drying out
  • Carpeting that isn’t going anywhere
  • Adjustment Number Two
  • Decorating
  • Finishing up the Clean
  • Transfer in.
  • Snagging

13. An Agency for Waste Administration

Demolition is an option to consider if you plan on eliminating any structural elements from your home.

Skips are an easy way to dispose of trash. Most garbage can be dumped for free at municipal dumps, however hazardous materials like asbestos must be handled elsewhere.

There are usually some usable parts of a house that are renovated. These goods need to be removed and either put into storage or sold to a salvage yard.

When the salvage rights to a large-scale demolition project are up for sale, the reclamation yard may take over some of the removal work, saving time and effort while also generating revenue.

14. Problems with Accessibility Must Be Addressed

If your home improvement project is taking place on a site with limited vehicular access, you should schedule the delivery of any large objects or landscaping machinery well in advance, before the arrival of new construction and stored materials.

15. Take a Closer Look at the Drains You Already Have

Do the current drains function properly? Find the inspection chambers (manholes) and use food dye poured down the drains to trace the pipes and determine whether any collapsed drains need to be dug up.

After the scaffolding has been taken down, the external drains can be connected to the sewage system or septic tank. However, if the drains are done at the groundworks stage and left exposed in the trenches surrounding the structure before backfilling, they are more likely to be damaged.

As long as the landscaping elements (drive, walks, beds, and lawns) can be shielded from the construction zone, they can be installed at any time. People usually don’t look at houses until they’re ready to move in.

Final push should not begin until all large vehicles and skips have left the site.

The time to find out if you need to relocate drains is before you start building an addition. Check the health of the septic tank and the soakaways if there is no connection to the city’s main drainage system.

16. Check out Ways to Better Utilize Energy

You can make your makeover more environmentally friendly in two key ways. It’s important to reduce the amount of money spent on heating your home by reducing the amount of heat it needs to maintain a comfortable temperature inside.

It’s important to insulate the walls and the attic, but draught-proofing should be a top priority. Heating costs can be reduced and indoor comfort improved by upgrades to the boiler and other heating sources (such outdated radiators).

Using draught seals, fixing draughty windows and doors, and installing draught excluders are all simple ways to prevent draughts.

To insulate an older home, you can either install cavity wall insulation (if the walls already have cavities) or internal wall insulation (which will require plastering). Alternatively, you can install external insulation (an option for those carrying out an external make-over or re-rendering).

Double-glazed windows are more energy efficient than single-pane ones, so you might want to consider replacing your single-paned windows if you have the budget and time.

17. Seal off any openings that the weather might find in your renovation.

After the roof has been patched (or rebuilt for additions), felted, and battened, the building as a whole should be made weathertight to prevent water damage and ensure the safety of the occupants.

Check the stability of the chimney stacks and pots, install bird guards, and fix the lead flashings around the chimneys, in the valleys, on the hips, the dormers, and the abutments while the scaffold is up.

It is always desirable to use reclaimed tiles or slates to match the existing/original roof covering whenever possible, especially if any new parts of the roof will connect with the old.

It is also possible to mount and glaze doors and windows. Doors and windows should be installed as soon as possible, but in the meanwhile, plastic sheets or, better yet, boards should be used to cover any exposed openings.

Scaffolding’s versatility means it may be used for more than just protecting people and property during rainy-day tasks.

Outside trim and siding like fascias, soffits, barge boards, windows, render, and wood siding should be painted now as well.

18. Serve to Maintain and Fix the Authentic Components

One of the most appealing aspects of remodelling an older home is the chance to save and restore the building’s original character and charm.

Unfortunately, not all restoration efforts will have weathered years of disuse unscathed, so some original details may be missing or damaged. Determine which components were originally part of the item and which were added on to save yourself the trouble of storing unnecessary items.

Sometimes fixing something isn’t worth it, and you’ll have to look into finding something similar but different to use in its stead. However, the delicate features of the originals may not be preserved in the reproductions unless you pay a higher price.

Paying close attention to the following details will help ensure that your renovation project maintains its historic integrity:

  • Windows
  • Floors
  • Doors
  • Fireplaces
  • authentic mouldings
  • Roofs
  • Structural support from timber

19. Get rid of antiquated infrastructure

Although rewiring and repiping are costly tasks, they provide an opportunity to build systems that are customised to your needs and those of your family as well as your energy consumption and the house’s intended use. Value can be significantly increased by modernising the heating and electrical systems.

Heating and electrical systems may have been recently renovated to a good standard; in this instance, all that may be needed are new radiators. A buildup of sludge in an old radiator can produce cold spots. Having a power flush performed on them will do wonders for their efficiency.

Underfloor heating is an obvious alternative to radiators for many homeowners undertaking a home renovation, especially those who want to build on to their existing structure.

20. Altering the Organizational Framework From Within

In order to make a house fit for modern living, it will usually be required to make certain structural changes as part of the renovation or remodelling project.

Some period homes suffer from a lack of flow in their layout because of the numerous smaller rooms that were typical of their architecture or because of the random modifications that may have been added to them over the years.

It’s possible that you’re considering a basement conversion, garage conversion, or loft conversion because you’d like to increase or alter the usable square footage of your home.

21. Carried out First-Repair Tasks

The term “first repair” has likely crossed your path, but what exactly does it entail?

Flooring grade chipboard or floorboards can be fastened to joists, and ceiling joists can be installed if necessary after internal stud wall frames can be constructed and any walls can be removed.

Window reveals and cills can now be installed, and door linings can be installed in preparation for dry lining.

New first fix electrical and plumbing work, including soil pipes and drainage connections, can be started after the first fix carpentry (including new stairs) is finished.

To prepare for the final plaster coat, now is the time to put in place anything that will be hidden from view.

  • Ventilation systems
  • water heater cylinder
  • drain tubes
  • Setup of a control circuit for a central heating system
  • alarms
  • devices for automating the home, such as speakers, etc.

22. It’s Time to Start Plastering Now

Plastering the walls, plasterboard/dry-lining the ceilings and any stud walls (tacking), and repairing any damaged plasterwork or mouldings are all next on the list now that the first fix is finished.

Wooden beads should be used in place of modern metal angle beads in an older building’s openings unless you’re going for a very minimal aesthetic.

Many older homes will have been completed with lime plaster, and replacing it with new modern plaster could very likely lead to moisture difficulties, so it’s important to think about the type of plaster you use.

Due to the messy nature of the plastering process, it is imperative that you take precautions to safeguard the stairs and any other easily damaged areas.

At this point, new floor screeds will be set on the ground floor. Typically, this is done after plastering to assist maintain a clean surface, although some people prefer to screed first and then plaster.

After the walls have been plastered and the manifolds have been fastened in place, the pipes or cable elements for underfloor heating can be laid. This is done before the screed is applied, so that the pipes and elements can be hidden.

23. Start Round Two of Maintenance

Second fix work can start once the flooring is installed and the walls have been plastered. When it comes to the second repair,

  • Installing the consumer unit and all electrical components, including lighting, switches, outlets, phone and TV ports, and the range hood extractor.
  • Installation of all doors and repair of the architrave, spindles, and handrails
  • Placing the taps and other fixtures in the bathroom
  • The boiler and controls have to be set up, and radiators have to be installed.
  • The kitchen’s installation and the finishing touches on any built-in furniture
  • The painters can now paint over the boxed-in pipes and soil stacks.
  • The heating system needs to be commissioned, which means it’s time for the plumber and electrician to get to work.

24. Build up the outside of it.

It’s not always necessary to renovate into a quaint country cottage or a perfectly symmetrical period home.

People are beginning to realise that post-war homes, despite their less-than-impressive outside appeal, can be rather beautiful after one moves in because of their lower prices, abundant windows, and spacious layouts. They are also typically less expensive than more desirable remodelling options.

Modern cladding, roofing materials, window coverings, and driveways can completely transform the appearance of a post-war home.

Before committing to a major renovation, it’s wise to assess the areas where you can make inexpensive improvements. When it comes to improving the appearance of the outside of your home, they are essential. Minor adjustments to think about are:

  • Modifications to rainwater products
  • woodwork (fascia boards, finials, etc.) that needs painting or replacement,
  • Put in a porch to make it more unique.
  • Planting, erecting fences and gates, and other forms of landscaping
  • Coating bricks in paint

Even though many of these alterations are permissible under Permitted Development, if your home has a special classification (i.e., is listed), you will not be able to do them.

25. Lastly, finish the decorating.

All second fix work and preparation must be finished before painting or staining may begin; otherwise, a quality finish will be hard to achieve.

Now is a good time to tile the walls of the kitchen or bathroom.

After the tiles are installed, the shower door and enclosure can be installed. White goods (oven, stove, refrigerator, washing machine) can be installed once the paint has dried and the walls have been hung.

26. Create an Object List

Over the next few months, we should expect a few minor issues to arise.

If you’ve hired home improvement contractors or handymen, they should be called back as soon as you see issues like cracks in the plaster, but you should be prepared to pay them even if the damage wasn’t their fault.

You may have withheld between 2.5% and 10% of the final payment from the principal contractor if you hired one. Once they have returned and fixed any issues, this amount will be released.