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The Two Mindsets For Any Remodel

June 26, 2012

There are 2 ways you can look at renovating or remodeling your home: Damage Control or Detox. Damage Control takes a failing condition and makes it better – including all surfaces: walls, floors, tiles. It could be a rotting deck, a leaky roof. Almost of these type of repairs are a huge value added to your home because fixing their inadequacies usually means a huge visual upgrade.

The other benefit of Damage Control is that the collateral damage of leaks, rot and cracking are often washed away in the purge of defective surfaces. Damage Control can also be invisible and have extreme costs when the hidden systems of your house begin to fail and need replacement – wiring, plumbing, heating and cooling equipment all snake between finished surfaces of walls, floors and ceilings – meaning huge disruption, but hopefully achieving safety…

Detox is the most satisfying of remodeling mindsets: you are getting rid of things that drive you crazy: not enough closet space, dark and dreary interiors, weird traffic flow, a nightmare kitchen, a separate bath for kids or guests. Detox takes a functional disaster go away – but there can be huge budgetary implications when fixing a problem means recreating a larger area of demolition, rebuilding and chaos.

It may seem unnecessary for small fixes, but any project benefits from advice from a pro – an hourly charge by a designer or architect can pay for itself if you find an experienced pro who can head you off at the pass. Even if you are the King or Queen of DIY Weekend Warriors consider hiring a pro for the major gut rehab work and taking over when it comes to finishes.
There are dozens of dozens big bang for the buck improvements: eliminating an interior wall can truly reinvent an entire home’s ambience. A skylight can transform the light level of any interior space. A new kitchen island can transform an entire cooking place with little disruption. Sometimes one window or door to the great outdoors can turn a box into a place that shares the sweep and sensibilities of nature with the housebound.

All of these moves seem simple, but all involve structural, mechanical and visual consequences that may be well beyond your pat grade to analyze financially, functionally or aesthetically – so do think about getting advice from someone who has seen all the potentials, good and bad, a few dozen (or hundred) times before.

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