No one likes to think about having to “survive” anything, and certainly not a remodeling project. But in our experience, we’ve come to learn and advise our homeowner clients of the fact that there will be ups and downs with every project. The chances that your stress level will increase is even more common with room additions, simply because they are often the most complex and time-consuming — and thus intrusive — types of remodeling projects to undertake.
Consider, for example, the impact of removing your entire roof to accommodate a second-story addition, or displacing your kitchen to add an adjacent family room. Your day-to-day life can be impacted for several weeks, depending on the scope of the addition and related remodeling work, which predictably leads to stress. That doesn’t mean, however, that the payoff isn’t worth it.
To help you cope, your contractor should take the time to go over the entire scope of the project before you even sign a contract. Find out the best time to start in the morning and learn how they will control dust and muddy bootprints from getting past the construction zone. Another coping mechanism is to sit down with all members of your household to discuss the project, prepare for the intrusion, and map out responsibilities and concerns.
It also helps to plan contingencies, such as temporary cooking or sleeping areas, and make those spaces as comfortable and “normal” as possible. Another stress mitigator is to simply know that there will be a dip in your enthusiasm at some point in the process. Typically, when the project starts, everyone is excited. Early stages of construction tend to move quickly, fueling that anticipation. But as the intrusion of the project becomes a daily routine, interest starts to wane for a while. Then, it picks up again as completion is within clear sight. Just knowing that dip will happen helps flatten it out a little.
Prepare your neighbors. A room addition project often requires several tradespeople which can crowd a cul-de-sac or street with vehicles. Let your neighbors know what’s coming, when you anticipate the project being done, tell them the daily start and stop times, among other details about the project. It might also be a nice gesture to invite them to an open house when the project is done to show off your new space.
Among all of the room addition stress coping mechanisms, communication is king. You should have regular meetings with your contractor throughout the project to discuss progress, make decisions or selections, and address any concerns. It is incumbent on everyone to keep those lines of communication open, honest, and respectful.
This article was contributed by Zac Koenig of Koenig Homebuilders in Highlands. Give Zac a call to discuss your remodeling project in Highlands or Cashiers. The professional brokers at Meadows Mountain Realty would also be happy to help you decide if a remodel project on your home in the mountains is the best couse of action or if selling your home and buying anothe makes more sense. We can be reached at 828-526-1717 or 828-743-0424.