If the popularity of renovator-style television programs is anything to go by, we are a nation of do-it-yourself renovators. We love nothing better than up-styling a less-than-loved property and many of us are very successful at it.
However, there are some traps for the unwary that can turn a quick renovation into a major restoration project that eats money for very little return.
What renovators don’t want is to start pulling out the old bathroom only to find that termites have eaten half the framework away. Here are a few simple suggestions to make that renovation a project you will enjoy.
Building and Pest Inspection Reports: A No-Brainer
Astute sellers often have these reports available. However, if they don’t and you are seriously interested in the property, having these done by a reliable building and pest inspection company may be the best money you have ever spent.
You will know with certainty if the property will give the returns you are looking for after the renovation. You can also use the report and the inspector’s knowledge as your renovation plan.
At Bob Gunn Termite Solutions, we do hundreds of these inspections every year. Termite damage in both timber and brick homes features on many of our reports, but there are also structural concerns with many properties that look sound from the outside. Our inspectors have years of experience and know where to look and what to look for.
Check Council Regulations Before You Make Your Purchase
We have come across situations where people have already purchased a property with a specific type of renovation in mind, only to find when they lodge plans with Council that there are restrictions they were not aware of. This results in an expensive rethink as new plans are drawn up and lodged that meet with Council approval.
Spend Money Wisely in the Big Ticket Areas
If you have had a pre-purchase inspection, you don’t need to make major structural changes. So, concentrate your efforts in the kitchen and bathroom.
We have seen renovators make healthy profits just with some painting, new kitchen benchtops and splashbacks, as well as respraying tiles in the bathroom to cover unfortunate colour choices.
Don’t Neglect the Street Appeal Factor
Does the garden need landscaping? Perhaps the driveway could be improved by cleaning with a high pressure hose. Is the front fence straight or is it missing a few palings? These are all simple fixes that will attract buyers and add value to the property.
We recommend that you start with a structurally-sound property that has no termites and caution against over-capitalising. This could be the start of a very successful alternative career.