How to Plan a Major Home Renovation

Whether you’re planning to build an addition to your home, finally finish that basement, or add some bigger upgrades to boost your home’s value, home renovation projects can sometimes seem like nothing more than huge headaches.

But, no matter what your renovation needs are, if you’re properly prepared ahead of time with a smart home renovation plan, then your renovation project can go smoothly!

Design a Project Budget

Before you do anything else, create a project budget!

If you’re taking out a loan to pay for your renovation, decide what type of loan, how much to borrow, and how long it will take you to pay back so you can judge whether your renovation ideas are financially responsible or whether they’re a bit overambitious.

Make sure to plan an “emergency funds” section into your budget in case of any unpleasant surprises discovered during renovation!

Decide What You’re Doing Yourself

While home improvement shows may glamorize DIY renovations, look at your plans realistically before deciding to take on any tasks in your renovation.

Hiring a professional contractor might be a better financial decision than taking a week off of work to mini projects yourself.

Do Your Local Research

Before making any major changes to your home, check your local bylaws to see if there are any specific fees or other surprises you might run into after renovation. Checking with the building code and municipal bylaws of your area may also help you decide on a plan that further increases your home’s value by taking into account the neighborhood value.

Prepare for Life During the Renovation

Renovations can take a while, and can be quite loud and uncomfortable! Make a game plan for how you’ll adapt to your living quarters being transformed into a construction zone while the renovation is going on, or plan to move out temporarily!

Next time you’re thinking about that big renovation project, don’t dismiss the idea! With good planning and preparing, a major home renovation project can be a success!

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Choosing a Real Estate Agent Dos and Don’ts

Choosing a real estate agent may be the most important step towards selling your house in the Maryland location, Virginia location, Baltimore location, and Washington DC location successfully.  With so many companies and names out there, how do you choose the best agent for you?  Here are our top dos and don’ts for finding the perfect real estate agent to list your home!

DO Interview

Don’t just pick up the phone book and choose the first name that you see.  Search online for local realtors and read the reviews.  Come up with a short list of promising agents and then interview three or four of these.  You need to choose a realtor you can work with because selling your home may not be a short process.

DON’T Hire Family Just Because They’re Family

If you have a family member that’s a realtor, you don’t have to hire them.  Sure, there may be some pressure to do so, but if you’re uncomfortable with having them represent your home, go with your instincts!  If you’re considering hiring them, interview them with your other realtors and see if their skills match what you need.  Make sure that whatever happens with your home, you’ll be able to maintain your relationship with your family member.

DO Hire Locally

Realtors need to show your home, neighborhood, and community in the best light possible.  To do this, you need a realtor who is from that community and knows it like you do. They’ll have the information buyers want about schools, restaurants, community activities, etc.

DON’T Choose an Agent Based on Commission

Often, choosing an agent comes down to money.  If you have three agents you’re considering and one offers you a much lower commission rate, ask yourself why.  How hard is an agent going to work for less than standard market commission?  And what buyer agent is going to want to take their clients to see your home?  A good realtor is worth their fee.

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