Want to renovate your home but don’t know where to start? You’re in the right place.

Whether you want to add a second floor to your home or you merely want to extend one of the bedrooms by knocking down a few walls, organising building renovations can be tricky. If you don’t do it right, your renovation plans will come crashing down – literally and figuratively.

To ensure your safety and that of your loved ones you’re going to want to follow this handy guide to renovating.

1. Plan your renovations

First of all, why do you want to renovate? Will you be able to stay in the house during the building process? Will you do the renovations yourself or will you hire a builder? Plan your renovation project carefully. You may need to consult a builder and get their opinion on whether the project is viable or not.

2. Budget for your renovations

How much will the renovation project cost? If you’re doing it yourself, then you’re going to have to phone building suppliers and get prices for building materials. If you plan to hire a builder to do the renovations for you, phone a number of builders in the Yellow pages and get them to give you a rough idea of what the work will cost.

3. Get a designer to draw up the plans

You’ll want to hire a designer or professional architect to draw up some renovation plans. This is a crucial step in doing home renovations that, if done incorrectly, can lead to major problems down the road – especially when it comes time to get building consent.

4. Hire a builder

If you’re doing the work yourself you can ignore this step; everyone else is going to need to hire a builder to do the renovations for them. Show prospective builders the plans from the architect and get them to price the project. Once you’ve settled on a builder, get a written contract drawn up.

5. Building consent for renovation work

Now is the time to get building and resource consent for your renovation work – if you haven’t already done it during the design phase. You will need to apply for building consent before doing any structural work. Usually your architect or builder will submit the application as your agent. Make sure they do.

6. Let the renovations begin!

Keep a close eye on your builder’s progress and keep to the architect’s plan. Organise building inspections with your local city council at the stages set out in your building consent and be sure to adhere to all best practices for safety.

7. Final inspection and tidy up loose ends

Your renovations will require a final inspection to ensure it complies with the New Zealand Building Code. This is essential in ensuring the safety of you and anyone else who resides in your home. All going well, you should be pleased with your newly renovated home.

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