When you think of what you did during the 2020 Pandemic, what is the first thing you think of? For me it is renovations and like almost everyone else during the pandemic, we used this time to do major home renovations. Since we didn’t have our wedding, we spent what would have been our honeymoon ripping apart our house and starting the process. That is when the fun began. We had no idea what we were getting ourselves in to- we had an idea of what home renovations would be like, but we had no formal plan set. We winged it all and 6 months later it worked for us… with a few bumps along the way but it worked!
It was definitely an experience that I will remember forever, and I am so grateful for the support system we had to help us get through it. There were some challenges and some lessons I learned that I think are important to share:
Lesson #1-If there is something you really want- fight for it until you’ve exhausted all your options and realize what you’re fighting for might take away from other things on your list. Our kitchen was the one room I wanted it to be exactly how I envisioned. I was not willing to let go of anything on my wish list… until I had too. One thing I really wanted was a breakfast nook- sounds simple enough but space was not on my side with this kitchen. I had 3 different kitchen companies design the kitchen space for me and it was never how I envisioned it. I tried my best to map it out, so many times we would go to the house with a roll of painter’s tape and map it out on the floor. It worked in my head,but it was never practical in design. Finally, our kitchen designer showed us a mockup of a kitchen without the breakfast nook,and I was in love. I was trying so hard to make something that I thought I needed work, that it would’ve taken away from other things I loved. I am so happy I tried so hard for the breakfast nook so I don’t have any regrets about not having it. If I let it go right away, I would always be thinking what if.
Lesson #2- Be prepared for the unexpected. We started our renovations with a few things in mind that we wanted to do. Once we got started, we kept saying, “well since we’re already renovating why not do that too” or “might as well change this while we are at” or the worst “we’re already spending X amount of money, what’s a little bit more.” That last line was said more often than it should’ve been and it threw our budget basically out the window. There’s also the unexpected that comes up when the trades discover things… you never know what’s hiding behind a wall until you take it apart. Be ready for this to add to your budget. With the unexpected and the added tasks, your timeline will face its delays. Hopefully some of the tasks you add can just fit in with the work already on the go but be prepared for your project to run in to some delays and for your expected end date to be pushed back. Not to mention in the world of Covid the delays with ordering items. We were fortunate enough that we started our renovations at the start of Covid so the demands on inventory weren’t as high but as we got to the end of our renovations, we were starting to see some delays on items that we didn’t before. Anything you need to order, order it as soon as you can!
Lesson #3- There will be fights and a lot of them. Forget marriage classes, a home renovation project should be what every couple has to go through in order to get married. You see each other dealing with so many different stress levels and of course happy levels too. There are so many things that go into a home renovation, different ideas, priorities, opinions, you are bound to fight. It is important to make sure that all parties are happy with the decision that is being made or find a way to compromise. It is all worth it in the end when you can sit back in your new home and think that you designed your dream home for the next stage of your life.
Now that we have settled into our home, all that’s left is to get to work on the finishing pieces to decorate it… time to shop!