Ringing in the new year can be an uplifting experience for some and a time of melancholy for others. Resolutions are hard to keep, and transitions are difficult to manage for some — even though, in the end, they are in our best interest. The end of one year and the beginning of another year is symbolic. For many, this milestone is the perfect moment to strategize a renovation — or "reno" — of their current home.
Many homeowners wish they could make all of these changes happen in a day. It's hard, but someone has to break the news: It's just not going to happen that way. Only in certain TV home-reno programs does that kind of immediate change happen. The truth is, behind the scenes, there have been countless hours, probably months of planning and professional labor crews orchestrated and scheduled to make these makeovers appear like magic.
But I digress.
The real world is full of mistakes, surprises and inspections that can make even the smallest change take at least one month's time.
Don't wing it! To avoid letdowns, the first thing to consider is a scope-of-work list. This will give you and your contractor — if you're using one — a good idea of the extent of the work. This also will help you to generate a time schedule and a list of supplies and materials you will need for every area. You can find computer software that will help you track and manage expenses. Yet another list this will generate is a budget. A project almost always will cost you more than you budget, but at least this way, you can keep track and know when to rein in your desire for the very best of everything.
Now, when it comes to styling your project, perhaps you do color well; a lot of people claim to have good ideas and taste. But is it worth taking a risk and making a big mistake? Why not call a professional to give you a hand? Even if it means breaking up the project into several phases in order to afford a designer, I highly recommend it. A good designer will listen to your needs and take into account all of the minutiae that may slip your mind.
In the end, most homeowners redo their interiors every seven to 10 years on average. Why not invest in having it done correctly? Besides, in every community, there are all types of interior designers to accommodate all kinds of wants and budgets.
Go ahead and ring in the new year with a game plan to call your favorite designer, someone who fits your style and your budget. Hiring a designer is not a luxury, but wise management of your main investment: your home. Your efforts and your investment will show well and be worth more in the long run. Happy New Year!
Joseph Pubillones is the owner of Joseph Pubillones Interiors, an award-winning interior design firm based in Palm Beach, Florida. His website is www.josephpubillones.com. To find out more about Joseph Pubillones and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.