Questions to Ask Before Starting a Major DIY Home Renovation or Addition in Hawaii

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If you watch very many home renovation shows, you have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to adding to or renovating a house. Some of those shows may have fueled your interest in tackling a major home renovation or addition on your own home in Hawaii. Before you follow through with any grand plans you might have, here are some questions to ask yourself about how ready you are.

Questions to ask about your knowledge and skills

Do you understand everything that needs to be done to complete the renovation/addition?

Renovations and additions are more than just tearing things out and putting other things up. Depending on your project’s scope of work, there may be some work that requires the skills and knowledge of a contractor who has been trained to do the work – like electricians and plumbers. Brainstorming all the possible work will help you get a better understanding of what needs to happen to make your project successful.

Does the project require extensive knowledge and skills?

Some parts of a DIY project are simpler than others, like painting a room or installing new doors. Others, like structural changes, new wiring or plumbing, can get complicated and require more knowledge and skills than you currently have. Be honest with yourself about what you are capable of taking on versus what needs to be done.

What zoning restrictions or local building codes do you need to be aware of? What work can you do without a permit?

No one city or state in the United States has exactly the same zoning restrictions, building codes, or permitting process. Hawaii, in particular, has specific codes, restrictions, and processes for obtaining permits that are designed to preserve as much of each island’s natural beauty as possible for those who live on and visit them. Some places may differ on what work needs a permit, but in Hawaii, most major home renovation or addition projects will require them because of regulations that require any project with more than $1,000 worth of work to be permitted.

Do you have enough time to complete this project?

One of the biggest reasons why some major DIY projects fail to be completed is because the homeowner underestimates the amount of time and effort it will take on their part to finish. Having the skills to take on a project accomplishes nothing if you do not have the time to devote to making sure the project is done right.

What is your budget and do you have room for it to absorb the cost of something happening on the project that you were not expecting?

Before you attempt any kind of DIY project, you should know how much money you have to devote to completing it, as well as how much room there is in your budget in case it takes more time or issues come up.

Will the savings be worth not having it done professionally?

Sure, you can do the work on your own and probably save money doing it, but what will the work be worth in the end? If the project is not done well, it may have to be redone in a few months or a few years and could cost you more, in the long run, to get it done correctly.

Questions to ask about your personal situation

Do you enjoy performing physical labor?

Construction work requires a lot of physical labor. Think about how you feel about doing it before you commit to a major renovation or addition to your home.

Are you a patient person?

A lot of situations come up over the course of a major project like a renovation or addition, with some creating more stress than others. When you are considering an extensive DIY project on your home, look carefully at how patient you are in stressful situations.

Do you finish what you start?

Are you the kind of person who starts things and never finishes them? Major home renovation and addition projects require a high level of commitment in order to complete, so take that into consideration.

How does your family feel about the project?

Before you get started on a DIY project, check in with your family to see what they want and how they feel about it. They are going to be your biggest support system, and you need them on board with you.

What is your conclusion?

Maybe your answers to these questions were an encouraging sign. Maybe they made the prospect of adding to or renovating seem too daunting. Either way, we are here to help you make your home the perfect fit for you and your lifestyle. Our expertise is in designing the spaces you need and creating easy-to-follow, permit ready plans so you can take on a project like this by yourself.

Contact us today for more information.

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