January 5, 2009, 6:00 am

Final Thoughts on Home Renovation

by: The Financial Blogger    Category: Properties
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Back in November, I started some home renovations in order to have a daycare at home. At the same time, I spent more money and finish a bathroom with a shower along with a room to put my desktop and my TV. While simply creating a big play room would have cost only a few thousands, I decided to do the whole basement for about 10K (who said we were in a recession? Hahaha!).

Increase your house value

The main reason I decided to do everything at the same time was to add value to my property so I can refinance and pay for my renovations (I would not necessarily recommend that move but since I am an employee of a bank, I don’t pay much interest on my mortgage). Adding a bathroom was the most expensive move I did but this is one of the best thing to do in order to increase your house value. On top of that, I just love my new shower!

I recently paid for an appraisal on my house and it came back 9% more than last year. Considering that the market is quite stable in my town since 2007, I think it was worth it.

No matter what you plan, add 25%

I thought I was great with a 7K to 8K budget. However, there were several things I didn’t think about when I plan my stuff. It took more time than expected (what a surprise!) because there were several things to fix before starting the real job. I had to buy more materials than I planned (remember I am a financial planner, not a builder 😉 ). At the end, I was simply pissed off everyday since the guy who was doing the work was telling me I needed this and that and this and that (mind you, every “this” and every “that” means another $100!).

It takes a lot of time to finish the job

We decided to paint and do the last touch up on most things as I didn’t want to pay another $1,000 to get everything done. While I am glad to save a few bucks, I noticed that those “small things” to be done take a lot of my time! Therefore, the basement was completely done in more than 2 months instead of the 3 to 4 weeks that was originally planned!

Overall, I am glad that everything is behind us and that we can now work on opening the daycare in February.

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Congrats on getting things (finally!) finished. My experience has been that the little finishing pieces can take as long as the main project itself- when we remodeled our staircase, the bulk of the work took a few weeks, but it was another month before I finished the little details like paint touchups, trim, etc.

The “plan on 25% extra” bothers me just like it does you. Makes us feel like poor project managers eh 🙂

My wife experiences the same thing whenever I undertake a little household project. She just multiplies whatever time frame I provide by two, and then I still usually exceed it.

I couldn’t beleive that I was such poor manager 😉
Hopefully I will become more accurate over time!

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