A Step by Step Guide to Planning a Home Renovation Project

Planning a home renovation can be a daunting task, especially if you’ve never done it before. There are numerous steps to take and several factors to consider no matter how big or small your project will be. As long as you take it one step at a time and consult with professionals, it will be much less overwhelming. Use this guide to help you map out the details and effectively plan your renovation.

Important Steps of Planning a Home Renovation

Make a Budget


The most important part of planning a home renovation is setting your budget and sticking to it. Consult your finances and figure out how much you are willing to spend. Once you decide on a spending limit, you can begin to plan the details of your project.

Since some projects require a considerable amount of money, you may need to look into different loan options for financing a renovation. Some common options include mortgage refinancing, a home equity line of credit, and home equity loans. Do your research on these options in order to decide which is best for you.

Look for Inspiration and Ideas

home renovation ideas

After solidifying your budget, you can begin to come up with a plan. The Internet provides ample resources to draw inspiration from. Look at home renovation blogs and portfolios of general contractors, taking note of the trends that interest you most. Speak to your friends and family that have had renovations done to generate ideas of your own. Do a full walkthrough of your house to determine if there are any rooms or features that need updating, improving, or fixing and decide which parts of the home would benefit most from an upgrade. Come up with a solid list of your wants and needs before speaking with a general contractor.

Get Estimates from General Contractors

General contractors will be able to provide you with an estimated cost of your desired project as well as further insight as to how your vision can be achieved. Remember to add about 20% to a contractor’s estimate to account for potential unexpected costs and make sure the price still fits within your budget.

If the estimates are higher than your spending limit, work with the contractor to find lower-cost options like different materials or smaller scale projects. When consulting with contractors, it’s important to ask several questions in order to choose the best company to work with and build a good relationship with the team.

Choosing a General Contractor When Planning a Home Renovation

planing a home renovation

Another crucial part of the home renovation process will be deciding on a general contractor to hire for the project. In addition to gathering estimates from contractors, there are several other factors to consider in order to pick the best company possible. Ask to see their portfolios, especially examples of projects similar to yours. Speak with all the references they provide and get an idea of their previous clients’ experiences. Once you’ve found a general contractor you’d like to work with, get all the necessary paperwork in order such as a contract and cost breakdown.

Set a Timeline and Schedule

Work with your general contractor to settle on the timeline and schedule of the project. If this is a renovation you know you want to be finished before a certain event or season, make sure you begin the planning process as early as possible. Think about when it would be most convenient for you and your family to take on the renovation.

Prepare Living Arrangements and Adjustments

If you are unable to stay in your home during a renovation, be sure to make other living arrangements. Decide if you’re staying with family or friends, or if you need to book a hotel.

If you are staying in the home during the project, determine what temporary changes you’ll need to make. If your kitchen is being redone, maybe you can relocate your food storage to a separate part of the household along with appliances like a microwave and toaster. If a bedroom is being remodeled, set up a temporary bedroom in a guest room, living room, or basement. Take the necessary steps for you to be as comfortable as possible while the project space is under construction.

Don’t Forget These Home Renovation Tips

Once the renovation is underway, there are some steps you should take to ensure the project goes as smoothly as possible.

Inform your neighbors – If you’re expecting the renovation to involve lots of noise from tools and machinery, and large trucks in and out for weeks at a time, let your neighbors know beforehand so they aren’t taken by surprise.


Consistent communication – Exchange email and phone numbers with your project’s foreman before work begins so you can keep in touch. It will be important to be able to contact each other with any questions, concerns, or issues during the renovation process.

Track your transactions – Make sure you and the foreman are keeping track of the money spent on the project to keep from going over budget. As mentioned before, your budget should include money for potential unexpected costs that may arise. If extra costs do come up or the plan changes in any way, be sure to consult the budget in order to stay on track.

Get progress reports – Before the project begins, ask your foreman to provide you with status reports as frequently as necessary. You should speak with him at least once a week just to get an idea of how the project is coming along and to ensure everything is getting done according to schedule.

Planning a Home Renovation and Need an Experienced General Contractor?

Choosing the best general contractor is one the most important parts of planning a home renovation. Mancill Builders has over four decades of experience serving Delaware County and the greater Philadelphia area. We are deeply dedicated to providing the highest quality service, and our testimonials speak for themselves. No matter what type of remodeling you’re looking for, contact us today so we can begin helping you plan your next home renovation project!