How to Do a Fixer Upper Right

Committing to converting a fixer-upper can be an incredibly rewarding and daunting experience. Check out the following tips before saying “I do” to a home that needs some TLC.

Consider your Purpose

Are you wanting to quickly flip the house or live in the home? Your answer should determine your timetable for projects and the size of projects you’re willing to take on. Whether you’re flipping for others or renovating for yourself, the importance of location never fluctuates. Neither you nor a prospective home buyer wants a bad neighborhood or a house by a busy intersection.

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Cosmetic over Gigantic Projects

Unless your true passion and calling is for home renovation (and you’ve got a budget to match that passion), ensure the house you have your eye on doesn’t have major issues. Removing wallpaper, updating paint or flooring, installing light fixtures, or replacing cabinets all fall under “entry level” when it comes to experience and budget needed to get the job done. On the other hand, if there are major issues with the roof, the HVAC system, or a kitchen or bathroom needing remodeled altogether, you are looking at a lengthier project which is probably no longer DIY and will definitely cost more money.

Contractor Investigation

You’ve probably heard someone’s nightmare contractor story. Avoid such an experience by finding someone who is not only licensed and insured but whose work you’ve also seen. If possible, walk through a home or two they’ve done extensive work on. If not, do ample internet research- try sites like Angie’s List, Houzz, or HomeAdvisor, but don’t underestimate the word of mouth testimonials you get from people in town.

Contractor Communication

After you’ve found the person who seems right for the job, get several important points in writing. How often will he or she personally be on site? (From experience, if the answer is anything other than “every day,” be wary). If you can’t be at the home regularly to answer questions, have a system for how you two will communicate. And maybe most important of all, document everything. In the event the job can’t be completed, you’ll want proof of what was agreed upon and under what terms.

You may be a renovation god or goddess, but don’t DIY when it comes to the moving process. When you’re past the fixer upper stage and are ready to move, we’ll fix you up with everything you need to get the job done smoothly and efficiently. Give us a call to learn more.