5 Honest Things That I Have Learned During Our Renovation

Wednesday, September 9, 2015



1. I can live with less.  We are currently living in the small apartment space above the horse stalls and let me just tell ya, the space is tight. Only the boys favorite toys and living necessities fit inside. Everything else is in storage. Our temporary kitchen is a "one person at a time" kinda space and we currently do not have a microwave, dishwasher or space for dishes.  Although, I do miss my microwave for reheating my coffee I have learned that even though all the extra "things" in a living space might make life more convenient but we can live perfectly fine without them. 

2. I DO need wine at the end of the day.  There will be no juice cleanses or detoxes in the near future that's for sure.  In fact, pretty sure I could live off of wine and ice cream sandwiches for the next 6 months and be perfectly fine. Just saying.

3.  We should have anticipated to spend a lot more money than we originally budgeted for.  Unexpected (expensive) things that we can't dodge have sprung up, and that's just the way renovations go.

4.  I have had to lower my expectations and realize I can't control things that are out of my control (duh). By lowering my expectations I'm not as disappointed with set backs and delays in the process. Although I still get mad as hell when people suck at what they are supposed to be doing. 

5.  Stress levels have been at an all time high these past few months, and frankly no one could have prepared us for how stressful this whole process would really be.  So making time for ourselves and our marriage away from all the chaos has been so incredibly important.

If you have been though a major remodel, renovation or new house build and made it out alive without losing your mind or divorcing your spouse (kidding...) I would love to hear any advice that you may have. 

10 comments:

Denise - Jewelry By Denise said...

I know it's hard while you're in the middle of it all but it will all work out! We had a house built 2 years ago. It had its hiccups but in the end, it was fine and we have a wonderful new house that fits our needs. Wine helps!! :)

natasha {schue love} said...

We remodeled our house but there are two fey differences: 1) we were able to stay in our in-laws apartment rent-free during the time of the remodel and 2) we didn't have kids! We're planning to build our next home and THAT is going to be much much more tough so I look forward to your advice!!!

Miss Rabbitt said...

We just moved into our newly remodeled house in May. It was supposed to take 5 months and it took 10 months. We were more than 100% over budget:( To say it was stressful is an understatement. We love our house and we are trying to replenish our savings account. Whenever things got really hard I reminded my husband that no one was dying and we had a lot to be thankful for. Good luck! It won't last forever and you will have your dream house in the end!

Cindy said...

Linds- When we remodeled our little home doubling its size-Uncle Steve said it would take at the most 6 months. We started in April and when December came-the front and back of the old house was exposed to the weather with nothing but black plastic tarps. We sent the kids to the Grandparents and Uncle Steve and I slept on the couches. I cried a lot that night. But within a week the walls and windows went up and within 2 months it was finished. What I learned was...Remodels are rarely smooth and in the end we completely went over budget, went Past our timeline, and I almost had a nervous break down with 3 little kids to take care of. But the end result was worth all the stress and tears! Hang in there, this will be your forever home- and 15 years from now this will seem like a very small slice of time. Believe it or not there's a lot of great memories being made with you 4 in that little space right now--forever memories.
XXOO Aunt Cindy

Anonymous said...

One thing that helps with some of the financial and emotional stress is doing the work
yourself. I am REAL particular and expect perfection, so I learned to do flooring, drywall, and other skilled tasks. By doing so, I got the perfect results I expected and saved thousands of dollars and much frustration with contractors. It was a win, win situation.
I'm looking forward to my next remodel and the pride I get in doing the work myself..... with the results I expect.
Some parts have to be contracted out but the majority of the work, you can do yourself. Best of all. kids love to be involved and feel they have a part in the project
Good Luck!!

Erika Parker Price said...

I could have written this! Currently living in a 2 bedroom apartment with my husband, 2 teen boys, an 8 year old pug and a 14 month old Rottweiler during our 6 month remodel. The hardest for me has been the unexpected things outside of the house - my allergies are awful in this apartment, my puppy injured her knee and is supposed to be "resting" for the forseeable future. I have been living on wine and Skinny Cow ice cream sandwiches, but am trying to shift my thinking. Just joined a yoga studio and have been actively seeking out their Yin and meditation classes in addition to the more active stuff. Just need something to quiet my mind. As a family, we actively acknowledge that we're all in this together, we all hate it and it is temporary. We watch movies and play double solitaire. And I have let a lot go. If a kid's winter coat is packed in storage, I just deal with it and don't ask why he didn't think ahead. Working hard to give everyone extra grace.
Good luck! Deep breaths! Keep dreaming of the light at the end even if you can't sed it yet!

Melissa Blake said...

What a great list! We moved into our new house 10 years ago and my mom is always saying, "if I could do it all over again..."

Glad everything worked out!!!

Mindy said...

I agree with the DIY. It takes longer, but it's soooo much cheaper and it's done the way you want.

Michelle Tieleman said...

Aww I feel your pain about the stress of renovations! My husband and I built, moved, renovated, built and lived with in-laws for the first seven years of our marriage!! I think my advice would be to try and enjoy the little moments amidst the stress even if its a takeaway coffee while sitting in the middle of the building site. I also learned that we could either get grumpy and yell at each other to make decisions or deal with problems or make a choice to be calmer. Tough but worth it. Now we are finally in our forever home it makes the pain worth it (I think)

Janelle Winters said...

I'm sure your house is going to AMAZING after the remodel is done! But in the meantime, thank you for putting this un-glamorous information out there for people to learn from. It's such a stressful time and I'm so glad that you've embraced that as best you can and rolled with the punches without punching anyone! And I definitely agree that it's important to plan on spending more than you want because all sorts of crazy things can come up that need money. All the best with the rest of your remodel! (Hopefully it's done by now!) http://www.skerlec.com/Construction-Services-Monaca-PA.html

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