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How to renovate your home

Posted: Saturday 20 October 2018



How to renovate your home

Renovations often take place for two reasons. The first, is usually that the property is a fixer-upper, in need of a serious overhaul. The second, is when a homeowner decides on a refresher after many years of living in a much-loved property. Whatever the reason, knowing how to go about renovations isn't always evident. Read on, for our guidance on how to ensure your renovations go smoothly.

Getting the right insurance

Writing for @MyHomebuilding, Natasha Brinsmead lays out insurance requirements:

“Once you exchange contracts on a renovation project you become responsible for the site and you must therefore have adequate insurance. If you are taking out a mortgage to fund the project, your lender may not release any money without your warranty and proof of insurance being in place...Renovation insurance should include public and employer's liability, cover for building materials and works, plant, tools, temporary buildings, the existing structure, personal accident cover and legal expenses.”

Renovating a home can mean a lot of moving parts, with contractors and materials, tools and equipment all together on a build site. Having the right insurance will mean the project can proceed and you can have peace of mind in the bargain.

Planning design

Odds are that despite your enthusiasm, you don't have any formal design training. That's why it's an excellent idea to hire an architect. With experience of managing building sites and working with all manner of building professionals, an architect can help you through every step of the process. This includes recommendations of local builders they've worked with in the past, ensuring a level of quality and workmanship that might be difficult to achieve by yourself. Your architect will also be an expert when it comes to materials, and will find the best, budget-friendly way of carrying out any renovations.

Working at height

Your builders will need to work at height to complete any renovation, whether that's painting or something more heavy-duty. This means installing scaffolding. A high-quality scaffolding setup will keep the project on schedule and allow your team to perform their jobs well. However, there are a few different options available to you, and much of your choice depends on your specific circumstances.

How tall is your property? Will you be needing a temporary roof during the renovation? Do you have access to all sides of the property? These are questions you will need to work out the answers to before deciding on your scaffolding choices. If your property is part of a terrace or is semi-detached, you may want to opt for independent scaffolding that can stand by itself.

It will pay off to do some research into the company providing your scaffolding, particularly if there are external elements on the façade that you want to retain or improve. Try to find some reviews of the company by others who have used them, and speak to your architect. You'll also need to work out whether your house is a listed building or otherwise protected by regulations.

Photo © Hugh Chevallier (cc-by-sa/2.0)

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