Renovating a Fixer-Upper: Where to Start

If you’ve bought a fixer-upper home, it’s probably because it cost less than a turn-key property. In fact, according to Buildworld, 73 percent of people who purchase fixer-uppers do so because of financial reasons. However, your fixer-upper can still present financial challenges if it needs a little (or a lot) of renovation. The average cost for “necessary repairs” is around $13,000, and you could easily spend thousands more on practical upgrades. When you don’t have an unlimited budget, which projects should you start with first?

Prioritize Safety First

The first step is to start with what needs to be fixed to ensure your home is safe. It’s best to hire an inspector to identify any potential hazards or issues with the plumbing and electrical systems as well as any structural problems, such as a sagging roof, so you won’t be surprised by damage or other major problems down the road. Identifying these must-fix types of issues will allow you to develop a realistic cost estimate for all your renovations and guide your decisions as you prioritize the rest of your projects. 

Revitalize Spaces with Paint

After you’ve addressed safety concerns, you can focus on upgrades and renovation projects designed to improve the aesthetics in your home. One of the simplest and least expensive ways to make a big difference in the look of your home is to refresh the rooms with a coat of paint. You can transform the whole feel of a room by painting the walls, cabinets, or even the doors. 

Depending on the size of the painting project, you can spend as little as $50 if you do it yourself, and new paint can have a huge impact in any room. You can easily add a bit of style by painting an accent wall, which is typically the one that’s visible when you first enter a room. You could also consider using an accent color on the wall behind your bed or sofa. Popular colors right now include light green or blue and dark gray.

Replace the Flooring

Installing new flooring is another project that can immediately have a huge impact on the look and feel of your fixer-upper. One of the most popular choices today is luxury vinyl plank flooring, which looks like real wood but costs only a fraction of what hardwood flooring does. It’s water-resistant, so you can use it in kitchens and bathrooms, and you can use it to create a variety of unique designs with herringbone, chevron, and diagonal patterns. Also, keep in mind that the color you choose for your new flooring will likely affect other design choices you make when you update your home in the future. 

Installing your new flooring early in the renovation process also makes sense from a logistical point of view. Ideally, you want to get this done before you move in and start placing your furniture and filling the rooms with all your stuff. 

Remodel the Kitchen

The kitchen is one of the most frequently used spaces in any home, so you might want to place a kitchen renovation high on your priority list. Kitchen remodels can be extremely expensive, but they can also be done very well without costing a small fortune. One cost-effective way to brighten up a kitchen is to simply paint or refinish the cabinets. If the cabinets aren’t in good shape and a coat of paint won’t be much of an improvement, you can replace them. You can find great-looking cabinets, doors, and hardware for reasonable prices at home improvement stores.

You can also replace your countertops without breaking the bank. Discount granite shops will cut and install countertops for a lot less than high-end showroom stores. You can also find more affordable materials for a countertop upgrade by sourcing them at warehouses instead of showrooms. 

Replace the Windows

Home window replacement might not be the least expensive or easiest project to tackle in the beginning, but over the long run, it will pay for itself in lower utility bills. Older windows could have air leaks, making your AC and heating systems work harder and increasing your energy costs. New windows also make the home more comfortable because you won’t have cold winter air or sweltering summer heat leaking through the cracks. 

Whether you start with fresh paint, updated flooring, a kitchen remodel, or new windows, get your home remodeling project done the right way by hiring experienced professionals. The experts from Forever Builders are whole home remodel contractors San Diego homeowners can trust to provide the most affordable home remodeling services and ensure their visions become reality. From design to completion, we’ll help you create the home you’ve always wanted, meeting all your expectations while keeping your costs within budget. To find out more about our outstanding remodeling services, give one of our friendly team members a call today at (833) 243-5624.

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