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I'm Erika Ward

Over a decade ago, I exchanged my corporate life in building construction for an opportunity to enhance your personal home via decoration and renovation.  My mission? To help busy professionals make their homes their sanctuaries.

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Nothing is more satisfying than witnessing that long awaited home transformation or gutting out that eye sore of a room that makes you cringe in every passing. Although it’s very tempting to run off and seek your nearest willing contractor, you first must know how to prepare for a renovation, especially the cost.

Renovation costs are one of the most underestimated aspects of any task, but is usually the ultimate deciding factor for many projects.

It’s important to remember: though planning for your long sought out remodel may be satisfying in itself, preparing your pockets for the financial change will create a much more gratifying experience. With that thought in mind, let’s explore a few tips to financially prepare for your future renovation!


Depending on the renovation demands of the home, some homeowners find it all too easy to produce a towering list of areas to tackle. Conversely, others may have only a few specific areas that are in dying need of attention. Whether you’re pursuing a profit from your renovation investment or seeking the perfect tailored changes during your long term residency, it’s really important to gain a clear idea of the type of renovation you are considering.

So ask yourself, “Will I be concentrating tweaking only the countertops and floors of that dreaded high traffic powder room? Or, will I anticipate a full house renovation for my charming fixer upper?” To aggressively tackle a solid renovation plan, identifying your areas of concern, and determining which would be considered the starting lineup and the others you elect for second string will only further prepare you financially for the renovation.


Once you have set your sites on the ideal project to take on, now it’s time to match your plan with a number! Before beginning your journey of hunting for quotes, take a moment to grab your ink pen to get really specific! Jot down that amazing countertop that would go perfectly in your kitchen, and that incredibility durable hardwood that would be a sure match for your foyer, or that sparkling backsplash tile fit for your master suite.

Specify these details, along with many more, to ensure the prospecting contractors are all on even ground with pricing the same items- trust me, performing all of the heavy thinking up front will lessen your headache in the long run. Be sure to receive multiple quotes and refer to their recent work, references, and reviews to aide in making a confident selection on your contractor. Be wary of quotes that are remarkably cheaper than the rest- if it seems too good to be true, then it probably is.


Ok sure, after writing down your specifics and then selecting the contractor with the winning bid- we don’t expect to really spend more money, do we? I hate to break it to you, but it happens a lot more than homeowners realize! The good news is that there’s no need to panic, it’s a completely normal occurrence and can be very difficult to prevent.

Unforeseen problems or design changes occur on every project, so although it’s not the most ideal situation, it’s definitely worth preparing for. Once you decide on your winning contractor’s bid a good rule of thumb is to add a 10% -15% cushion for the unexpected. For larger projects, such as a full home renovation, you may want to consider a 20% cushion. This is a great way to financially prepare for your renovation because if there’s a hiccup that arises in your project, you aren’t over budget. Genius right?


Personal savings is one of the most preferred options when funding a renovation project. However, there are pros and cons with any decision. If, in fact, you chose to utilize your savings to pay for your renovation out of pocket, due avoid paying cash. Instead, pay in a way that allows you to track and document how the money is being spent. Opt for submitting your payment in the form of a check or debit card instead!

Swiping a credit card as a chosen payment plan for the renovation is another preferred option, and not a bad one at that! Why, you ask? Let’s start with the fact that credit cards have become increasingly popular with not only large purchases, but small ones too! Using a credit card gives you an extra layer of protection for your purchases. You can easily track your payments, leaving you with a blanket of security, effortless organization for your records, and maybe even some reward points!
Carefully consider a home equity loans and be aware that they vary case by case. A few types would include: a cash out refinance, home equity loan, and the most preferred, a home equity loan line of credit, known as HELOC. There maybe a few other viable loan options to consider, but I would recommend researching which loan would work best for your needs and consulting with a professional to gain more knowledge.

Whichever method you may use, being financially prepared for your future home renovation will place you ahead of the game!

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  1. Ken Lewis says:

    Great article, Erika! You bring up all the major key points. We appreciate your sharing your insights and thus posted your work on both Studio Designer’s Facebook & Twitter – check it out!
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/StudioWebware/posts/2283862178294338
    Twitter: https://twitter.com/studiowebware/status/973230890267627520

  2. Important things to keep in mind! Great post.



Over a decade ago, I exchanged my corporate life in building construction for an opportunity to enhance your personal home via decoration and renovation. My mission? To help busy professionals make their homes their sanctuaries.

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