Category Archives: renovate or sell

How to determine if a fixer upper is worth the work

should-you-buy-that-fixer-upper

“I love it, but it needs work!”

Don’t be discouraged if you find yourself saying that about a potential property. Even the best homes may require a few tweaks to get them move-in ready. For first-time homebuyers, fixer-uppers offer amazing value. Identify the great bones hiding behind dated wallpaper or lighting, and you can save money, while custom decorating your property to your liking. Here are 5 property flaws that are fairly easy to fix.

 

Flaw #1: Unstylish wallpaper or a unattractive paint colour

Fix: One of the cheapest and easiest ways to refresh a space is to paint it a clean, neutral colour. That’s why it’s so surprising when a home seller skips this step. Unflattering walls, from unappealing paint shades to outdated wallpaper, can elicit a visceral response in certain viewers: “Not. This. Home.” That gives savvy house-hunters an advantage: more homes to choose from, and possibly a bargaining chip when it comes to sales price.

Lacklustre walls are easy to fix. Repainting a room takes just hours, and even if you have to strip old wallpaper beforehand, it’s a straightforward weekend project.

TIP: If possible, tackle chores like painting before you move into your new home.

 

Flaw #2: Dark, gloomy rooms

Fix: Dingy rooms are often the result of bad lighting. Upping the wattage of light bulbs can make a big difference, but installing new light fixtures is the surest way to give a darker room a bright new outlook.

Well-lit rooms combine ambient lighting with task lighting. A solid lighting strategy pairs overhead illumination such as modern recessed lighting or a traditional chandelier with additional light sources like table lamps, floor lamps or desk lamps.

Lighting is an easy fix so don’t let this flaw deter you from making an offer on a fixer-upper. Basic lighting installation can be tackled by DIYers, while a pro can make short work of installing recessed lighting.

Flaw #3: Damaged hardwood or a musty carpet

Fix: Old carpets put off potential buyers, but don’t let that stained floor covering deter you. Ripping out wall-to-wall broadloom takes elbow grease, but isn’t difficult.

If you’re lucky, you may find well-preserved hardwood underneath. If not, don’t stress: stained or scratched-up hardwood can be refinished by sanding, re-staining, and varnishing. Ambitious DIYers can tackle this, otherwise, you can hire a pro to do it for less than it would cost to have new hardwood installed.

If the carpet was hiding linoleum, consider today’s next-generation engineered hardwood or budget-friendly laminate: it looks like hardwood, and features basic, glue-less, click-in installation.

Flaw #4: Out-of-date kitchen cabinetry

Fix: Nice kitchen, not-so-nice cabinetry? Not a problem: Wood cabinets are easy to update! Just give them a cheap-and-cheerful facelift via a couple coats of hardwearing enamel paint and new knobs or pulls.

Or, for a more radical makeover, have your cabinetry refaced by a kitchen specialist. New doors, drawer fronts and hardware provide a kitchen makeover, minus the hassle and waste of ripping out serviceable cabinetry.

Flaw #5: Zero curb appeal exterior paint palette

Fix: Curb appeal is huge. And when a house is seriously lacking, you may think twice about the investment. But take a few minutes to analyze a house’s exterior before you cut it from your list. Would a new exterior paint palette for the walls, porch, window shutters and front door transform the house from drab to delightful?

Source: Genworth.ca

 

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When planning home improvements, finding a reliable contractor is an important first step

Hiring the right contractor can make all the difference when renovating your home

Skyrocketing Toronto real estate prices are motivating many existing homeowners to improve their homes, rather than replace them. “We’re seeing a big trend to add value to homes through renovations and to increase living space by building ‘up or out,’” said Kris Potts, president of Toronto’s Norseman Construction & Development. “In doing so, existing homeowners are achieving the living space improvements they would normally seek by moving to another home, but at a much lower cost.”

Whether the homeowner’s goal is to add living space by ‘building up or out’ or just to bring kitchens, bathrooms, and other rooms up to 2017 standards, their biggest challenge is often finding a contractor who can be trusted to do the job right; on time and on budget.

With an impressive 83 per cent score on the consumer rating site HomeStars.com, Norseman Construction & Development is one such contractor. Established in 2005, this family-owned-and-operated company listens to its customers throughout the design and build process; keeping them constantly informed about their project’s progress until it is completed, and each customer has received exactly what they asked for.

“We do our best to take each homeowner’s vision and make it a reality, ensuring that the finished product exceeds their expectations,” said Potts. “We do this by keeping on top of the perpetual advancements in the field, and by addressing the constantly changing needs of local homeowners. Add Norseman’s wealth of experience, superior workmanship and unparalleled attention to detail, and we are able to provide our customers with innovative solutions, competitive pricing and timely results on all their home improvement projects.”

Norseman’s attention to customer needs starts with the company’s consultation process. “Book an appointment on our website, and one of our skilled estimators will come to your home to provide a free quotation on whatever you have in mind,” said Kevin Potts, Norseman’s Operations Manager. “We will do our best to come up with a plan that not only meets your needs, but also fits within your budget and schedule.”

Once the home improvement project is underway, Norseman keeps customers ‘in the loop’ about the project’s progress on a daily basis. “Our people use a program called Buildertrend to upload status reports and photos of each day’s work,” Kevin Potts said. “Our homeowners can log into it as often as they wish to see firsthand how their build is going, and to get answers to any questions they may have.”

“Today’s homeowner is very savvy, thanks to all the home improvement shows on TV,” said Becky Potts, Norseman’s Marketing Manager. “Here at Norseman, we respect this level of awareness by giving homeowners open access to information about their projects at all times. Check out our Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter pages, and you will see our customer-first values in action!”

‘Customer-first values’ is a phrase that means something at Norseman Construction & Development. It is why this contractor provides a two-year warranty on its work – many other contractors only provide a year’s coverage.

It is also why the Potts family insists on alerting customers to project-related issues should they occur. All construction projects carry with them some element of the unknown. Opening walls or floors can bring to light new information not present at the project’s beginning. “Setbacks happen,” said Kris Potts. “When they do, we tell the customer about them upfront, and we fix them in consultation with the customer.”

As well, customer-first values drive Norseman’s approach to its skilled tradespeople. “Unlike some other contractors who are focussed on profits first, Norseman treats its trades fairly,” said Kevin Potts. “In return, we inspire loyalty in the most skilled tradespeople in the industry. The payoff is the best quality work on our customers’ homes.”

That’s not all: Norseman invests money and time in ‘giving back’ to the GTA community. Its charitable efforts include underwriting the annual free Messiah for the City Christmas concert for clients and staff of the United Way. This much-loved music is performed by the Toronto Beach Chorale and members of the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Norseman also supports Habitat for Humanity, which aids low-income families in attaining affordable housing; serves hot meals at the Scott Mission, and funds numerous local sports and charity events in the GTA.

“The way we treat our customers and our community underscore what Norseman Construction & Development stands for,” concluded Kris Potts. “When you hire us for your home improvement project, you will receive quality-oriented, customer-focussed service from a stable firm that truly puts you first, and who cares about the community we all live in.”

For more information about Norseman & Construction & Development, visit their website or connect on Facebook.

This story was created by Content Works, Postmedia’s commercial content division, on behalf of Norseman Construction.

Source: National Post

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Mike Holmes: Speaking in code

Before starting any job, it’s important to check code to ensure you’re using the proper materials and practices so that when the project is finished, it will pass inspection. By now, you all know that I like to build above minimum code whenever possible — and by doing so, we’ll have stronger buildings that are built using better products and practices.

In fact, because building codes are different depending on where you live, the best way for me to teach others is to leave minimum code at the curb and focus on teaching homeowners how to build better and stronger homes in the first place.

Here’s a question I’m asked often: When it comes to fasteners, what do I use? While there’s not one fastener for all occasions, when it comes to screws or nails, I’m going to use screws wherever possible.

The right fastener for the job

When it comes to fastening, I always say to glue it and screw it. Gluing gives you a solid connection while the screws will keep it there — and not loosen over time. Find the right fastener for the job by checking code first.

There are some projects where you need the right kind of screws, and other jobs where screws on their own just won’t cut it.

Wood screws are used to secure lumber, but the kind of job you’re doing will dictate what kind of screws to use. There are screws that are designed for interior or exterior projects.

In the case of exterior wood screws, you can get them specifically designed for the type of wood you’re using, like cedar, or a pressure-treated wood. Pressure-treated wood is treated with Alkaline Copper Quaternary (ACQ), which is more corrosive for metal. That means you need a fastener that is approved for outdoor use with ACQ treatment in mind.

For indoor projects, drywall screws are designed to hold drywall securely in place because they have deeper threads than a typical screw, which keeps them from dislodging from the wall.

Screws popping out of drywall

Have you ever had your screws pop right out of your drywall? There are a few reasons why this could be happening — but it usually comes down to an issue with the installation. A lot of installations are done too quickly. If you’ve only got one guy installing the drywall as fast as possible they might not be putting proper pressure on the sheet of drywall making sure it’s on tight.

Too many builders worry about speed, without taking the time to truly do the job right.

In the case of minor popping there’s a relatively simple fix. Push the drywall in and ensure it is snug against the stud, and add some new screws. From there, mud over the screws, sand it, and add a fresh coat of paint.

Squeaky floors

If you’ve ever tried to quietly sneak around your house only to be given away by the telltale sound of a squeaky floor — the problem may actually lie in your subfloor, and how the builder fastened the sheathing to the floor joists. You can sheath a subfloor with hardwood but you will find that it contracts and expands depending on the humidity conditions in the home.

Because the hardwood is nailed to the subfloor, in time, as the wood contracts, the nails can pop out.

To keep things quiet and in place, use a plywood subfloor that’s been properly glued down and secured with screws. The glue makes the connection between the sheathing and the subfloor, and the screws hold everything in place without loosening over time.

Builders often use a nail gun to install subfloors, and you sometimes have the nail missing the joist. When not completely secured, the floors will move when pressure is placed on them (every time someone walks on them), causing that annoying squeak you hear.

Before you decide on fasteners for your next project, always check what code dictates in your area. The spec of the job will let you know what kind of fastener you should be using. If it’s my choice — I’m going to glue it and screw it.

Building a strong house that will stand up to anything you can throw at it is all a matter of building it right and choosing the right materials.

Watch Mike Holmes in his series, Holmes Makes It Right, on HGTV. For more information, visit makeitright.ca.

Source: National Post – Mike Holmes | April 1, 2017

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Mike Holmes: You’ll get renovation stress, but here’s how to mitigate it

Living through a renovation puts a lot of stress on relationships. I’ve seen couples argue, and sometimes it’s so bad it can really test your relationship. The best thing you can do to avoid that is plan, plan, plan. The time you put into planning your renovation will determine its success. You must discuss everything with your partner, as well as your contractor. Talk about design choices, materials, expectations, what you’re willing to compromise on and your must-haves. Once you and your partner are on the same page, then do your homework.

Research and educate yourself on everything there is to know about the project — the trades you will need and when, all materials, the products you want, proper installation, warranties. Most people focus on the finishes — that’s the icing — but the bulk of your research should be on the right construction and materials that will support those finishes and make them last.

Some people will take all the right steps preparing for a renovation — they’ll discuss their budget, figure out if they need a construction loan, they’ll go over timelines, plus when they expect work to start and finish by. But once the reno starts, there are a lot of unexpected issues that can come up.

Before any work can start, everything must be cleared away from the area that will be renovated, plus the path leading to it. You must have a plan for storing all your furniture and appliances.

Where will you keep it all? Do you need movers? Do you need to rent a storage space? You should be discussing this with your contractor, too.

Also, where will you be living once construction starts? Some people think they can just stay home. I wouldn’t recommend it. Dust and noise will be a constant issue and mechanics, such as electricity, heating and water, typically get shut off — talk about an inconvenience! Plus, if the construction crew has to clean up at the end of every workday, because you’re living at home during construction, that adds extra labour costs.

Renovations aren’t a perfect science
and sometimes things happen

Let’s say you have a place to stay during construction. In most cases, it won’t be comfortable, which can put more stress on couples. When my son was renovating his house, he stayed in a Winnebago with his girlfriend. It was small, they didn’t have all their stuff and he was dragging in all kinds of dirt from the job site — it’s not an ideal situation.

And what do you do if construction goes longer than expected? Renovations aren’t a perfect science and sometimes things happen — like unexpected or emergency repairs that push your timeline, and budget, way beyond what you originally thought. Be prepared for the unexpected.

If you’re lucky enough to be staying at someone’s house, such as your in-laws, it can still be stressful. For one, it not only screws up your entire daily routine but also inconveniences other people. I remember one homeowner tearing up talking about staying at their in-laws during their renovation, and her daughter couldn’t play or dance for months because of boxes everywhere.

Even years after the job was done, the family was still recovering emotionally.

Changes to construction schedules and emergency repairs are another set of unexpected issues you could face. Anyone renovating their home should know that this can happen. You need a

Plan B in case it does. What things can you live without if you need to pull money for an unexpected repair? Are you willing to compromise on the finishes so you can stay within your budget, or will you go over it? If you do, what does that mean for you and your partner?

A successful renovation starts with plenty of planning, which takes time to do right — sometimes it can take months! But even all the planning in the world can’t prepare you for the unexpected. When that happens, communication is key, with your partner and your contractor.

Watch Mike Holmes and his son, Mike Jr., on Holmes and Holmes Thursdays at 10 p.m. on HGTV. For more information, visit makeitright.ca.

Source: Mike Holmes, Special to National Post | November 26, 2016 

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Mike Holmes: Asbestos is like a sleeping monster best left undisturbed lest danger ensues

Many building materials, including some drywall compounds, can contain asbestos, which is why it's important for all crews working on older homes to wear protective safety gear, including respirators.

Mike Holmes: Asbestos is like a sleeping monster best left undisturbed lest danger ensues | National Post

The National Day of Mourning is on April 28 — that’s a time to remember those people who have been affected by workplace injuries or death. It serves as a reminder for all of us to make sure we have the right processes and systems in our workplace to prevent illnesses, injuries and even deaths.

Some of the biggest threats on the job site are the ones you can’t see, such as asbestos.

What makes asbestos so dangerous is its fibres.

Asbestos is a generic term that refers to a number of different mineral fibres. Because of their strength, durability and resistance to fire, these fibres were used widely in building materials and added to residential construction products.

It wasn’t until the late 1970s when it became known that asbestos posed a serious health risk, and since then it has been banned from building materials. It was used in vermiculite insulation, insulation around pipes and water tanks, roofing compounds, shingles, sealants, caulking, adhesives, vinyl tiles, drywall compounds, even some electrical parts.

When asbestos fibres are disturbed, they are released into the air, and if they’re inhaled they can get trapped in the lungs and cause serious health issues, including cancer.

Canada has one of the highest rates of mesothelioma, which is a type of cancer caused by asbestos.

Although asbestos isn’t currently used in construction materials, there are many older homes that still contain it. Any home built before 1980 should be professionally checked for asbestos, especially if a renovation or home improvement is planned. (Getting these materials properly removed by a professional company through remediation can drive up the cost of your reno.)

Canada has one of the highest rates of mesothelioma, which is a type of cancer caused by asbestos.

Professionals can take samples from suspect materials, such as walls, ceilings, vinyl floor tiles, siding, insulation and roofing materials. These samples are then sent to a laboratory for analysis. If the presence of asbestos is confirmed in any of the samples, don’t disturb the materials —­ whether by sanding, cutting, sawing or removing it; leave it to the professionals.

Some people might panic and start ripping out the material and products themselves, but that is not at all advisable. Disturbing asbestos and materials that contain asbestos is what makes it dangerous. That’s why contractors and their crews should always wear protective clothing and gear, especially during demolition. You never know what might be found, and what might be a hazard.

If a material that contains asbestos is in good condition, it might not need to be removed; however, it’s important to monitor it for signs of deterioration, because as soon as any fibres get loose, issues can start to arise.

There are some temporary fixes to prevent asbestos-containing materials from getting damaged and fibres getting loose, but they should only be done a professional contractor. Dealing with asbestos-containing material is never DIY.

Whenever hiring a pro to work on your home, always make sure they’re qualified to do the job right, which includes taking the proper safety precautions and knowing how to deal with potentially hazardous materials, like asbestos, the right way.

Ask what type of safety gear they normally use during demolitions, and the course of action they would take if they suspect any material contains asbestos. A contractor who doesn’t make the health and safety of their own crew a priority will likely not care about yours either, so do your homework. Ask if they have a professional asbestos abatement company that they normally work with. Who are they and what are their credentials? What’s their track record? Your contractor should be able to talk to you, not just about doing the job right but also about proper cleanup and safe disposal of materials.

Asbestos in homes and on the job site is a health risk. Too many contractors have years taken off their lives because they didn’t protect themselves with the right safety gear, such as gloves, safety glasses and of course respirators. Doing a job right means doing it safe. It protects homeowners and pros, too.

Source: National Post. Watch Mike Holmes in his series, Holmes Makes It Right, on HGTV. For more information, visit makeitright.ca.

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A DIY home renovation is rarely easy, fast or cheap

(Alessandro Rizzolli/Getty Images/iStockphoto)

“If you think good design is expensive, you should look at the cost of bad design,” Ralf Speth quipped recently.

The CEO of Jaguar Land Rover was talking cars, but even so, I wish I’d heard this before my renovation. We designed closets too shallow to fit my size-9 shoes, and shelves spaced so far apart you could sit on them. When the doors were installed, they opened against the light switches. All the radiators were hung in the wrong places, and we neglected to put one in the bathroom.

These are perhaps trivial annoyances in the grand scheme of things. But in the scheme of my mind, they take up far too much space. Besides which, righting the wrongs of the past isn’t cheap. My inability to spot these pitfalls ahead of time would have made me the ideal candidate for an interior designer. Seeing them in hindsight makes me the ideal candidate for an ulcer.

Thousands of homeowners plunge into renos without knowing the first thing about electrical currents, wood flooring or picking paint colours that won’t make them look jaundiced. We think we do: We watch Rehab Addict and buy Elle Decor. Then we splash out on an Italian sofa only to realize the fabric gives us a migraine. The property-porn industry has created a generation of cocksure DIY home decorators, and only an interior designer can properly smack some sense into them.

Whether it’s thanks to a real estate market that makes it prohibitively expensive to move, or the so-called “HGTV effect,” renovation spending is on the rise. The Home Improvement Research Institute says sales of home-improvement products are increasing more than five per cent year on year. The industry was worth a record $63.4-billion in 2013, or 3.7 per cent of total Canadian gross domestic product, according to real estate consultants Altus Group.

It’s never been so easy not to hire a pro before embarking on a reno.

“We didn’t hire a professional, but in hindsight we should have,” says Isabel Blunden, a London editor who spent nearly a year remodelling her home before the arrival of her first child. She would visit the site twice daily while the renos were in progress.

“It’s easy to feel like you’re capable of knowing what’s best for your space. But I now realize that having someone’s guidance could have actually saved us money, and certainly stress. Even a task as simple as choosing a wood floor was virtually impossible to get done.”

Blunden had an electrician install a five-amp circuit so she could control all her lights with one switch. Yet in the end, only one of the existing lights were compatible. Because she underestimated the amount of built-in storage she’d need, she now has freestanding units in most rooms.

“The builders turn to you and say, ‘We need to know where this is going – now,’” Blunden says. “I really believe having someone here would have helped.”

With an expensive renovation on the horizon, the idea of spending 10 to 15 per cent of your budget on hiring an employee might seem impractical, but factor in the cost of a mistake and it’s a wonder more people don’t use designers.

Ada Bonini, a principal at Vancouver design practice Bob’s Your Uncle, says she’s heard of DIYers spending thousands on sofas that were too big, or walnut floors that are scratched beyond recognition by their dogs.

“A good designer knows about spatial arrangement and proper scale, what materials are appropriate,” Bonini says.

“If you like walnut but can’t cope with walnut, there are options available.” She says she’s sourced area rugs that can be cleaned and designed storage at various heights that families can grow into over time, as well as wider doorways that can accommodate wheelchairs.

“It’s not just about the kids growing up,” she says, “it’s about aging in place.”

Then there’s the cost of not doing anything. “People say they don’t want to invest because they’re planning to move in five years,” Bonini says, “but the buyer is paying for those investments – so you’re actually investing for a lifetime.”

According to the Appraisal Institute of Canada, bathroom and kitchen renos provide a return on investment of about 75 to 100 per cent, while exterior or interior painting provides a return of 50 to 100 per cent. And that’s after you benefit from the renovation yourself.

Working with a designer can truly pay off when it comes to their industry discounts. “Typically our discount is 20 to 50 per cent,” Bonini says.

Even factoring in the 15-per-cent purchasing fee she charges for each buy, and her flat fee (which varies by the project), clients get a net saving.

Bonini says the biggest savings generally go to the biggest spenders, but there are cost-effective options at the lower end, too.

New Yorker Will Nathan launched design service Homepolish two years ago after discovering no professional would stoop to take on his $25,000 project.

He eventually found the natty designer Noa Santos, who whitewashed his apartment, added loads of lighting and eventually joined the partnership.

They now charge $100 to $130 an hour for interior design and $50 to $80 for a home consultation.

“We democratize design by making it simple without adding hidden costs,” says Homepolish’s L.A.-based creative director Orlando Soria, whose urbane, exuberant chic has come to epitomize the company’s MO.

“We’ve devised all sorts of efficiency systems on the back end that help our designers concentrate on design.”

When Soria joined Homepolish shortly after its launch, he was one of the only designers on staff. Today there are 200 working in cities across the United States. Canada is a logical next step for the company, but, Soria says,

“We’re incredibly selective with the designers we take, so finding them is a long process.”

The service makes it feasible even for renters to get a leg up, and Soria believes the cost is justified.

“It’s annoying to spend what it takes. But the upside is getting a new space. Your space is valuable and it’s logical to spend money perfecting it. This is your life.”

DIY decorating is plagued with costly endeavours disguised as savings. “I’m always surprised at how little people value their own time,” Bonini says.

“People take hours second-guessing, finding a contractor, learning building codes, shopping for tile. These things can take a homeowner 10 times longer than a designer,”

Here’s another place a neutral party can come in handy. “I’ve seen some marriages tested during the renovation process,” Bonini says.

“It helps having a ‘go to’ to assist in decision making. It takes the pressure off of your tasks.”

But, like they say, when you own a home there’s always something that needs doing. “[Having a designer] might have meant we could talk about something other than the house for 12 months,” Blunden says.

“Now we talk about how we’re going to redo it for the baby.”

How to hire the right designer

Start by flipping through your favourite design magazines for projects that stand out. Visit stores where you might source some of your furnishings – whether it’s IKEA, Restoration Hardware or Ralph Lauren – and ask for a recommendation.

The website Houzz.com is an excellent resource for finding designers. Just plug your city into its search engine and you’ll get an extensive list you can filter by specific need. You’ll also find images to go along with each entry.

Hiring a designer will pay off most if you’re tackling a full home reno, an addition or a new home interior. That way you’ll benefit from your designer’s discounts across all your floors, surfaces and furnishings. Volume, volume, volume.

If you want a designer who is accessible and can move fast, choose a business with resources. You’ll want a team of more than one or two, so you’ll get the attention you’re looking for.

Interview several designers, asking for their portfolio and references. They should be comfortable talking money and time right away.

Speaking of which: Ask up front what you’re paying for. Agree on the payment structure, the schedule of meetings and discounts. Be clear if you want to see invoices for every purchase and specify this in a written agreement.

A designer should listen to your concerns, your vision and your taste and shouldn’t condescend. But don’t be put off by a bit of direction. A designer should rein you in, protect you from poor decision making and manage expectations.

Make sure your designer will work through the end of the project – you’ll want to follow up with a snag list of outstanding tasks and questions about maintenance.

Source: ELLEN HIMELFARB Special to The Globe and Mail Published Wednesday, Feb. 04, 2015

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Renovation stress builds a range of emotions, from happiness to the desire to divorce: survey

As many have said, renovations can be a lot like giving birth: They’re painful, they make you want to scream, and cause you to ask yourself why you’re bearing the brunt of all the work. And yet, you love the result and often end up repeating the whole thing.

Houzz.com’s Remodeling & Relationships Survey of Canadian users, conducted online this past December and January, found a number of issues that caused pain, including the fact that:

  • 18% made a significant design decision without telling their partner
  • 8% snuck away to catch a break
  • 9% neglected to mention the price of something.

Those are the little white lies of the fixer-upper set, but in a number of cases, things got even worse:

  • 5% admitted to secretly throwing out something of their partner’s. That little bit of nastiness might happen when you refuse to compromise on your own tastes, as was the case with 17% of respondents.
  • While 63% said they did compromise, 6% threw up their hands and let their partner’s will prevail. That’s an unfortunate way to spend the following long years, staring at a design feature you abhor.

That failure to stand up for themselves might have been a result of poor communication (31%) throughout the project. This may have resulted in the stats that show

  • 33% could not agree on products or finishes specifically
  • or 30% on style and design generally
  • 32% of respondents felt they took on more work than their partner — already a source of tension in real life, let alone in reno life.

So, your partner buys something and doesn’t tell you (or lies about its price); says they really, really have to go to the office on Sunday; “accidentally” breaks that stained-glass window you wanted installed; and hates your choice of backsplash. It’s no wonder the survey showed

  • 40% found the time remodelling with their partner frustrating
  • 25% found it difficult,
  • 9% found it painful.

All those design decisions, looming deadlines and financial stress do take their toll. During the process, the worst experiences caused

  • 9% of respondents to think they needed couples counselling
  • 6% to ask “How did I end up with this person?” and
  • 3% to consider a breakup or divorce.

However, 63% thought they made a great couple on the job, and once the labour pains were over, 97% said it was all worth it. The results included:

  • 70% reported feeling more comfortable in their home thanks to the project
  • 66% felt happier
  • 60% felt more organized
  • 50% relax at home more often
  • 45% entertain more frequently
  • 36% do more cooking and dining at home
  • 28% spend more time together at home.

What did they learn from it? It goes back to communication and compromise.

  • 46% said compromise is the key to both the relationship and the remodel
  • 34% said it was agreeing on what you both want before you start the project
  • 30% said it was making a realistic budget (and of course sticking to it; note that secret purchase in the first point, above).

Source: National Post – Shari Kulha | February 5, 2016

 

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