7 Expert Tips for Renovating Your Home

Ah renovating! For those who know, it’s a love hate relationship.

If you’re about to embark on your home improvement journey, this one’s for you. We’ve compiled a list of 7 expert tips from industry maestros to help you work smarter, not harder. Read on to check out what they said.

Start with the Kitchen 

“When tackling a whole house overhaul, we usually start with the kitchen, living areas and bathrooms, as these are the big ticket items that cost the most and will be used the most often. It’s vital to make sure these key areas have fully resolved and functional designs and layouts.” Nina Maya  “Invest the most money into your kitchen, because it’s the heart of the home. It’s a room that many renovators underestimate because it costs the most. It has to be practical, it has to be functional and obviously aesthetics are important as well.” Shareen Joe | Interior Designer 

Work with the Home’s Blueprint

“Avoid removing supporting beams or walls; doing so can be hugely costly. Focus on the existing structure and aim to keep all of your facilities in the existing place (especially plumbing). The less you tinker with the structure, the cheaper the project will be.” Alice Stolz | Domain’s National Managing Editor

Know your Limits 

“Never assume doing a job yourself is cheaper than calling in the pros. Tradies will jokingly tell you that Monday is the busiest day of the week. It’s when the calls trickle from gung-ho DIYers who have botched the weekend kitchen installation or created a bathroom disaster. Renovating old properties can open up a can of worms and it’s best to have an experienced tradie on site when unforeseen problems come up. And they always do. You also generally won’t have access to the trade discounts that the pros get, which can be up to 10-20 per cent off retail. Buying in bulk gives them tremendous buying power. And you may have to outlay for tools or equipment hire, which quickly negate any savings on labour. Project managing a renovation can be a far better investment of your time and money.” Cherie Barber | Creator of the Renovating For Profit Course 

Renovating to Sell 

“If you’re renovating to sell, aim to appeal to more people. Whites, greys and neutrals allow potential buyers to visualise how their furniture will look.” Andrea Lucena-Orr |  @duluxaus

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Research the Restrictions

“Before renovating, research any planning or site restrictions that may affect the design and scale of your project. This can be done via your local council website.” Megan Burns and Christopher Glanville, CM Studio Architects | @cmstudio

Do your Research When it Comes to Trades

“There’s a lot of choice in the market when it comes to choosing the right tradie and it’s important not to get too attached to the developer’s glossy brochures and on-trend colour swatches. A pretty brochure doesn’t always mean the right qualifications or experience in the building game.Research your builder and/or their company and ensure that they’re licensed. Once that’s done and and you’re comfortable with your choice, you can sign a contract.” Steve Griffin | Commissioner of the Queensland Building and Construction Commission

When Tackling an Older Home

“If you’re renovating an older property, be prepared for unknowns (such as outdated wiring or asbestos) that may have an impact on your budget. There’s only so much an architect or builder can predict before getting into the guts of the project, so try to have a contingency fund of up to 25 per cent set aside.” Megan Burns and Christopher Glanville | CM Studio 

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Jordy Woolley
dynamic | innovate | style Jordy’s journey at Molenaar and McNeice epitomises the spirit of innovation. She first joined us as an experienced property manager where she hit the ground running with her fierce drive to redefine what property management can look like. Less than 12 month...View Profile ›
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