Millions of homeowners renovate their homes every year. Billions of dollars are spent not only on new remodeling projects but also on correcting botched ones. About $161 billion, to be exact.
Finding the right products for you and the best contractor to work with is difficult. We understand.
Maybe you’ve been burned by a faulty contractor and need to remedy their mistakes. Or maybe you are a remodeling rookie and want to ensure you choose a trustworthy contractor.
No matter the circumstances, you need all the information you can to make the best decisions for your project and home.
As a San Antonio remodeling contractor since 1989, Southwest Exteriors values honesty, integrity, and education above all else.
We work to provide you with the highest quality products and services for your home, and we’ll never pressure you into a contract. If we’ve simply answered your question, we’ve done our job.
Because we’ve been in this industry for so long, we know the best tips and tricks to ensure you have a successful remodeling project, and we want nothing more than for you to have a successful remodeling project.
This article will provide 23 tips for remodeling your home in 2023 to help you meet your project's wants, goals, and needs.
Then, you’ll have the right information to start your research and have the right solution to make your home remodeling project a success.
23 Things To Know Before Remodeling Your Home In 2023
1. Research is your best friend
Before starting any remodeling project, you must research. Research potential products you may be interested in, contractors in your area, installation practices, the best and worst products for you, and so much more.
It can be overwhelming to jump into a project without prior knowledge or idea of what you want. This is why researching every aspect of your project is the first thing you want to do.
2. Outline your wants, goals, and needs for your project first
As you're researching all you need to know for your home remodeling project, you must outline your wants, goals, and needs.
What do you want to get out of this project? How long do you want your new products to last? What are your must haves?
This will help you narrow down what products and companies will be right for you and provide you with a successful outcome.
3. Knowing what you want your finished product to look like will help the rest of your project
Picture your dream final product for your project. What does it look like? What do you envision?
Think of the details, such as design, color, customizations, and overall aesthetics. This will better help you outline your project goals and know what you are looking for, even if you have no clue in the beginning.
4. Know what you can compromise on
Compromise is always a part of life. When it comes to remodeling your home, you need to know what you’re willing to compromise on to fit your budget and goals for your project.
Maybe you can go without the elegant glass design on your new front door. Or maybe you’ll decide on this hardware finish over that one to save some money.
Compromising won’t only make it easier for you to narrow down your needs for your project but will allow you to find the right contractor that will make your dreams come true.
5. Know what you won’t compromise on
This is part of defining your needs for your project. You must outline what is most important to get out of your project and what you will not compromise on.
It could be ensuring you have the most energy-efficient products. Or perhaps something you won’t compromise on is a specific design element.
You must define what you will and will not compromise for your project to ensure your needs are met, and your project is successful.
6. Do your homework on a potential contractor
Finding the right contractor for your project can be difficult. Because there are so many options, you have to do your homework.
Look at a company’s website, photos, social media, and reviews. How do they make you feel? You must find as much information about the contractor as possible to find a trustworthy one. The more information, the better.
You want to feel confident to pick up the phone and give them a call and feel like they will take care of you.
7. Cross-reference a potential contractor across multiple review platforms
Reviews are one of the most important parts of researching a potential contractor. But you can’t just trust one platform.
Look at a company’s reviews on Google, Yelp, Next Door, Better Business Bureau, and any other sites you can find with remodeling company reviews. This will help you get a more unbiased view of the company and see how consistent they are.
8. Don’t be afraid to ask detailed and hard questions
Asking questions is one of your biggest defense mechanisms against a faulty contractor. After researching all about your project, you want to ask your potential contractors as many questions as you can and know the right answers.
If a contractor refuses to answer a question or dances around it, this is a bad sign they are not trustworthy.
9. If you stump your contractor with questions, this is a red flag
While you’re asking questions, you must be aware of how a contractor answers them. If they stall, try to avoid the question, or refuse to answer it, this is a major red flag.
You want a company with all the answers or can direct you to the right resources to find the answer. A contractor that won’t answer your questions may be hiding things from you, and why would you want to work with a company like that?
10. Have realistic expectations for the cost of your project
Outlining your project’s budget is one of the most important steps in planning. When doing this, you must have realistic expectations for the cost and quality of your project.
The highest quality products will never be the least expensive. So, if you want a long-lasting project that will meet all your needs, it will be more expensive.
Remember that cost and quality have a direct relationship when it comes to home remodeling.
11. Don’t choose the least expensive company just because
One of the biggest mistakes homeowners make during a remodeling project is choosing the least expensive contractor. The truth is, the least expensive products and the company will never be the highest quality.
So, if you are looking to invest in a high-quality, long-lasting home remodeling project, you cannot choose the least expensive option and expect it to meet your needs. If you aren’t looking for something with the highest quality and don’t need it to last long, then you may be able to go with the cheapest option.
This is why having realistic expectations for your budget and goals is necessary.
12. Know exactly what will be included in your project and what you are paying for
After you’ve met with a potential contractor and received a project proposal, you need to know what is included in your project and what you are paying for.
You should receive a full cost breakdown of your project to know where exactly your money is going. This helps you not only understand what makes up the cost of your project but allows you to trust your potential contractor more.
13. You want to know what crews will be working on your home
Your potential contractor should be able to tell you about the crew that will be working on your home (bonus points if they have pictures of the crews).
Many companies work with subcontractors. Even so, a trustworthy contractor will have a long-standing relationship with their subcontractors so you can know if they will provide you with a high-quality project.
If a company cannot tell you about the crews working on your home, who knows where they will get them from? They could be Chucks in a Truck that you have no clue about their quality of work.
14. Know how a company will communicate with you throughout your project
Communication is one thing you don’t want to compromise on your home remodeling project. When considering a contractor for your project, ask about their communication process.
Will you be updated if your project gets delayed or if any change orders are made? Will they keep you updated while you wait for your construction date? Will you have a project manager that will manage and communicate with your crews?
These are just a few questions to consider when it comes to communication. You want to work with a contractor that won’t leave you in the dark.
15. Be realistic in your abilities to do things yourself
Now, we know that hiring a professional isn’t your only option for a remodeling project. You may be considering a DIY project.
If you are, it’s important to be realistic in your abilities and skills, especially if you are considering taking on a large project, like a window replacement or decking addition, for example.
There’s nothing wrong with a DIY project, but it’s important to be aware of the risks involved and the skills necessary for a successful outcome.
16. Understand the cost will continue to rise throughout the year
Whether you plan to start your project at the beginning of the New Year or want to sit on it for a few months, know that the costs of products and labor will continue to rise.
Any home remodeling project is an investment. But the longer you wait, the more it will cost you in the future.
If you have been thinking about your project for a while, don’t wait any longer. Start your project as soon as possible to get the most out of your investment and enjoy the benefits for longer.
17. Financing is almost always an option for your project
You never want the cost of your project to get in the way of your dreams. Any home remodeling project comes at a hefty price, and it can be intimidating.
Many home remodeling companies offer private financing options to fit your needs. If not, financing through your bank is always an option.
If a payment plan is something you are considering for your project, it is important you find the right company that will work with your budget to help make your project come to life.
18. Visit a contractor’s showroom if you can
Because finding the right products for your home is stressful enough, visiting a contractor’s showroom is helpful to see what products will look like instead of just a picture in a catalog.
The ability to see and feel a product helps you to know if it is right for you and will fit in your home.
19. Treat your potential contractor like you’re dating them
When you work with a contractor for your project, you build a relationship with them. Treat them as if you’d treat someone you just started dating.
Do they pick up when you call? Do they follow through with what they promise? Do they show up for you when you need them? Do they commit to their word?
Looking at a home remodeling company with this lens helps you find a contractor that truly cares about you.
20. Don’t ignore the red flags
From the moment you contact a company to the time when you decide to work with them or not, it’s important you don’t ignore the red flags.
If something they do (or don’t do) or say (or don’t say) makes you put your guard up, it’s best to keep looking. The last thing you want is to end up in a contract with a remodeling company you can’t trust.
21. Prioritize needs in your home over wants
We understand that most homeowners have an endless list of projects they’d love to complete before the end of the year. It can be hard to decide which project you should start with.