By Stacey Gliniewicz
My husband I have decided to embark on a major home remodel journey. When he purchased our home, there were some projects that needed completing, but deployments, job changes, and children have significantly altered that plan. Now, here we stand staring down the list of all that we would like to see happen to our shoebox home where two adults, five children, and two dogs currently reside. The list includes easy, minor changes like replacing outdated lighting fixtures to major structural changes where walls will be knocked out and 800 more square feet of living space will be added. As we prepare for this journey, we have been doing our research that will hopefully lead to some answers to our questions that will make some of our decisions easier and cost effective:
How will we finance this project? Pay cash, take out a loan, get a second mortgage? I suggest asking individuals that you trust and you know will give you sound advice about your financing options.
How do we know which walls to knock out, where to add the plumbing, and design for our addition? Hire an architect that will be able to take into account walls that will maintain the integrity of the internal structure of your house. Be sure to let that architect know that you are looking for quality fixes, but on a tight budget.
What materials do we want in our home? We have considered so many various types of flooring, counter tops, all the way down to paint and window coverings. Our research continues, but did you know this: according to the EPA, your home is the fifth most polluted environment? This is where we raise our children, eat, sleep, and spend most of our time. Harsh chemicals are included in everything we use. Why not dig a little deeper and consider green products for your home? They are specially marked and you can ask the merchant specifically for these items, the merchant should know what you are asking for.
What design fits the needs of our family? We are looking for functional, comfortable and suitable for daily living, and can withstand the traffic and chaos of five kids and two dogs. Let your architect know this information as well. This is important information to share, as it will save a considerable amount of time and reduce discussion about what works and doesn’t work for your family.
Stay tuned as I share more about these topics and other side adventures in our journey to change our home into a functional space that everyone can enjoy! If you have advice, please share it for me or others who may be walking the same journey!