Pros often have to wear a lot of hats during a major home renovation project. A design Pro may have to step in and track down extra materials from the same dye lot, run errands all over town, and coordinate multiple people’s schedules while still updating the schematics for your project. One hat that a lot of Pros end up wearing that should never be a part of the project, however, is the one typically worn by marriage counselors.
Understanding the Stress
It happens far more often than you may think. A couple embarks on a new home improvement project, only to end up fighting and bickering through from start to finish. The Pro may unintentionally get sucked in, finding him or herself trying to mediate situations that somehow go far beyond the scope of normal home improvement disagreements.
Having work done on your home is stressful, and it can stress your relationship and your family if you let it. Being without a kitchen or bathroom for days or weeks, living with plastic tarps cutting off your access to certain parts of the home, dealing with the stress of trying to pay for it all, and trying to cope with change orders and strange people in your home every day, and a home renovation can be enough to make the sanest person feel crazy.
Too often, couples find themselves getting into heated arguments simply due to the stress of it all. There are ways you can cope with your renovation, however, that can not only relieve some of this stress, but even make it fun.
Get On the Same Page
Before you embark on this renovation, make sure that both of you are on the same page. If you have differing ideas of how this project is going to turn out or what your budget should be, you’re going to find yourself clashing on even more as the project unfolds. Resolve issues ahead of time whenever possible, and don’t proceed until you both want the same things.
Pick Your Battles
Is the color of your new kitchen faucet that important to you? What about the species or origin of your hardwood floor? Pick the battles that are the most important to you, and cede to the others to your partner. If a gantry style faucet is going to make a difference in your use of the kitchen, then, by all means, stick up for that. But if the issue is merely cosmetic and means more to your partner than to you, it may be time to shift your focus elsewhere.
Don’t Involve Your Pro
Whatever marital issues this home renovation may be bringing to light, remember that they are your business and yours alone. Don’t bring your Pro into this, asking him or her to choose sides. This isn’t what you hired your Pro for, and doing so is only going to slow down your project and make everyone involved uncomfortable.
Try to agree on issues that need attention first, and save your bickering over the other items for later after your Pro has left for the day.
Have a Contingency Fund
One of the most common arguments that couples have at any time involves money, and home improvements are no different. It’s not uncommon for things to come up during a renovation that will start to inflate your budget, and many of these things may be beyond your control. By having a contingency fund of about 20% of the total amount for the project, you can avoid some of the stress that comes with feeling the pinch of being short on funds, and hopefully some of the arguments that go along with it.
Home improvements are tough. Everyone agrees on this, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t sit back and enjoy the ride. Remember why you’re embarking on this project in the first place, whether to increase your home’s value or simply to increase your enjoyment in it. By remembering to take a step back and relax, your whole family will end up being happier throughout the project.
When you’re ready to begin, sign up with BEYREP to help make managing the project easier, and take some of the stress out of the process. Sign up today to get started and find out what the easier side is of your home improvement.