Home Renovation


Home Renovation Overview

We’ve all heard the home renovation horror stories – a huge investment, months of dust and disruption, delays, budget overruns, and shoddy workmanship. Despite the nightmarish tales, a recent survey by Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies shows that Americans continue to pour money into renovating homes - to the tune of $149.5 billion in 2005.

Modern Kitchen
Kitchens are popular renovation projects

So why are there so many horror stories?

For one thing, renovation is complex. And while there are many fine, skilled professionals to help you, construction trades are unevenly regulated across the country. That means consumers have to weed through the bad with the good. And we don’t always have information that could help.

Is it possible to have a good renovation experience, as well as the results you want? We know it is! In fact, after intense research and conducting interviews with experts and seasoned renovators, we've compiled the best, most relevant information about home renovation in a format anyone can follow.

Getting started

Before you begin your home renovation, it's important to plan ahead. Here is a checklist to get you started. The important thing to remember is that you should do your research up front. Find examples, look into cost, and prioritize within your budget.

Home Renovation Planning Checklist
List the renovation projects you are considering
Talk with friends, neighbors, and even realtors about their home renovation experiences
Look in magazines, catalogs, or open houses to get some ideas for your renovation projects
Do some research to get rough estimates of the cost of the renovations
Check to see how much the renovations would enhance the value of your home (more about this on the next page)
Prioritize your renovation project, keeping in mind your budget


Now let's plunge into the issues of what things cost, how to get the most value out of your renovation, and how to budget so there are no surprises.

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