10 Steps to Remodeling a Home

Remodeling a home is no easy task. If you’re a (DIY) do it your-selfer then the task of remodeling becomes even more difficult. Following some simple steps may make things go a little easier. Planning a remodeling project is key. The pre planning you do will make your remodeling project go much smoother. I’ve assembeled 10 steps to remodel a home that will help you plan your project and hopefully avoid any pitfalls along the way.

  1. Draw a Floor Plan/Create a Supplies List - Assemble your end result with a floor plan layout. Include all the details of where doors would go, placement of light fixtures, the kind of flooring, cabinets used for bathrooms/kitchens etc.. The more details the better. You must have a good picture of your finished remodeling project. Organize a list of materials to be used for each step of the project including lumber, fasteners, plumbing supply, plumbing drain/waste/vent, electrical wiring, elctrical boxes/receptacles, drywall, plumbing fixtures, electrical fixtures, heat/air/ventilation, flooring and trim just to name a few. The idea is to have a good idea of the total cost to remodel a home.
  2.  Get a Permit - A lot of times people remodel their homes without using permits. I reccomend getting a permit just for the simple fact the inspectors are there to help you and make sure proper techniques / materials are used. The end result using inspectors will be a safe and sound remodeling project.
  3. Demolition -  Depending on the size of your remodeling project you may need a rented dumpster. Using your utility trailer can also help as well. You may be surprised by the amount of debris that can be removed from an old home. TIP: If you use a utility trailer try putting an old tire with a chain tied to it and extended out the back end of the trailor. Go to the land fill  and have one of the tractors hook the chain. The tractor can pull almost all of your debris load off the trailer with the old tire underneath the debris.
  4. Framing - Check with your inspector and local building codes before you start. Make sure proper structural techniques are used. If you rproject is on the large scale I would reccomend the purchase of a framing nail gun. A framing nail gun will speed your project and make life much easier. Follow your floor plan and build accordingly.
  5. Plumbing - Generally I found doing the drain/waste/vent system first to be easiest. Using PVC is easy but will take time to figure out all the bends and different pieces needed to accomplish individual runs. Make sure proper pipe size, vent and trap techniques are used. Next I would install the plumbing supply lines. most homes use copper with various couplings, elbows, caps etc. Some homes have used flexible plumbing supply pipe, but check with local codes to see what is required in your area.
  6. Electrical - First thing “Electricity can Kill”. If you’re unsure here, I recommend getting a professional. Again follow the local building codes. You should have a plan to wire your project. Keep all home runs to the breaker panel labeled.
  7. Close Up - By now you should have had several inspections, all your wiring, plumbing and insulation is in place. You are ready to close with drywall. Check with the inspector because there are codes dictating thickness and number of fasteners to be used when drywalling. Try to install drywall in a manner to leave as few seams as possible. This makes your tape and mud job a lot easier and more professional. Once all the drywall is hung an inspector will give an okay to tape and mud.
  8. Paint/Trim /Doors - Things get a little more exciting now. You can now see the end nearing. Time to paint the walls to you r desired colors. Once the walls are painted you can hang the doors. Really doors are easy, just follow the manufacturers directions and be sure to have plenty of heavy duty wood shims with you. Install any base board trim leaving room for flooring material.
  9. Flooring - I found that hiring a contractor to install carpet was best, but the tile and wood flooring I could do on my own. Use of proper fasteners is always required for continued performance.
  10. Finishing Touches - Time to install any cabinets, toilets, light fixtures and switches etc.. Your project is complete.