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Don’t Let Big Home Repairs Disrupt Your Life {Guest Post}

This is a guest post by Jennifer Smith

Making over your house can be disruptive. Even projects that look small can require a big effort and can really disrupt your family’s life. It gets even worse for big projects, like putting on an addition, renovating or remodeling parts of the house (especially the kitchen) or rebuilding parts of your home or garage. It’s good to remind yourself that the disruption is only temporary, but that doesn’t really help you cope until it’s done. Here are some things that will help you cope.

1. Keep Things Nearby
One of the hardest parts of any major home renovation or rebuilding project is finding a spot to put all of the things that are normally in that part of the house and that you use regularly. A lot of families pack everything up and store it off site, making do with a few minimal substitutions. It’s better, though, to rent some large moving and storage containers that you can keep on site. This way your things will be safe and handy at the same time. The containers will take up space but ultimately the mess is easier to deal with than keeping things you need regularly off site.

2. Set Up a “Safe Zone”
This is a part of the house in which absolutely no construction will take place and in which the construction that is taking place cannot spill over. It is a part of the house that does not change and stays the same as it always has been. It’s a room you and your family can be in to feel “normal” even if half of your house is covered in plastic sheeting and plaster dust. Having a safe homey haven can help you stay calm and grounded.

3. One Thing at a Time
It’s tempting to try to redo everything all at once. This, especially if you have kids, does more harm than good. It’s better to let the remodel and reconstruction last longer and go one room or area of the house at a time. This way the change is gradual and won’t feel quite as startling as it would if you were to try and make over your home in one go. Moving room by room allows part of your home to always feel normal and homey and safe.

4. Move! No Really: Move.
If the remodeling that you need to do is extensive or if it would not be safe for your family to attempt to stay in your home while it is being done, you should move to somewhere offsite. A lot of families try to make do in a motel situation. It’s better, however, to find a short term home rental. Motels reek of temporary feelings whereas even if it is only for a couple of months, living in a real home (preferably one that you can move your own things into) can keep things feeling safe, normal and homey.
These are just four coping mechanisms that you can use to survive your home’s remodel or renovation. The route you choose is going to depend upon the actual project being done on the house.

  • Donna

    I had to work on “One thing at a time with my hubby”… he finally does that now. 🙂

  • These are some really great tips! Thanks for sharing!

  • I’ve been renovating my house for years, and definitely agree that you need a haven from the chaos.

  • We just do one small project at a time, it’s so much easier that way!

  • Great tips! Just remodeling our master bed and bath area was a big enough pain. I could not imagine having to deal with an entire house being worked on.

  • That’s a great idea to rent pods or something during renovations!

  • All great tips! It was rough when we had a bathroom remodeled.

  • Doing one thing at a time is such a good idea. Otherwise it’s easy to get overwhelmed.

  • Maryann

    It never fails that something you think will take x amount of time always takes 2 times that. You need to be prepared.

  • Penelope

    This is the truth!

  • In my past life in the remodeling industry, I would often hope people would move during the process since it was so disruptive.

  • small projects is the name of the game in our house. If I give my hubby a To Do list at once he never really gets anything done

  • Great advice!

  • Mellisa

    We are definitely a one thing at a time type family.

  • Great tips – we want to buy a home and diy for everything..

  • Wonderful tips!

  • I love the safe zone idea. We hope to build one day and I will definitely want aplace to escape some days I am sure:)

  • I wish I had more money and motivation to invest in my home. Since my house was built in the 50’s, there are things that could use a remodel.

  • Great tips! I would like to add, do it in a timely manner. We are going on 8 years for our basement 🙁

  • Great tips.

  • Great tips, we have only rented so haven’t really done many repairs.

  • Leilani

    Luckily, I live in an apartment where I don’t ever have to worry about repairs.

  • Doing one thing at a time is definitely key. Trying to do too many projects simultaneously will just break the bank and cause undue stress.

  • Those are great tips. We have so many small repairs to make it is hard to knoe where to start!

  • Repairs are no fun! Great tips.

  • great tips but I too live in an apartment so I don’t have to worry about this yet.