When (& How) to Plan Your Home Renovations in Calgary
January 29, 2024 - Michelle Murphy
Are you planning some home renovations in Calgary this year? The clock’s ticking!
Here’s the deal – reno season typically falls between May and September. That means you should be planning for your renovations sooner rather than later. If you’ve got your heart set on a brand new kitchen or a backyard deck for summer, now’s the time to get rolling.
For important steps on nailing your renovation prep and insights on how planning can save you money (and so much stress), keep reading!
Why timing is crucial for home renovations in Calgary
The Calgary climate isn’t exactly the most predictable. Just look outside! Sun one day, and the next, well… you know the drill.
When we talk about peak reno season, we’re talking about the best conditions for most types of home improvements. The time between May and September is when contractors tend to be the busiest, in part because of weather. Dry and warm weather means fewer delays and faster work. As you can imagine, it’s way easier for contractors to work their magic when they’re not battling the elements.
Materials and labour can also get pricier during peak times, so not only does planning save you from battling others for contractor availability, but it also gives you time to budget and secure the best bang for your buck.
Steps for Planning Your Home Renovation in Calgary
Having plans for your home renovations in Calgary is a must, and there are a lot of steps that go into making them successful.
Step 1: Assess Your Needs & Goals
Before anything else happens, identify what you want to achieve. Are you thinking a full-blown kitchen remodel or just a fresh coat of paint in the living room? Understanding your goals will help you create a clear plan and communicate it effectively with contractors. The clearer you are on your vision, the better the outcome. At MMID, we love to encourage our clients to have a “must-have” and a “nice-to-have” list.
Step 2: Build a Budget for Your Renovation
A realistic motto for home renovations should be “expect the unexpected”. Setting a realistic budget goes beyond just tallying up material and labour costs – you’ll want to plan for any “surprise” scenarios too. A good rule of thumb is to set aside an additional 10-20% of your total renovation cost for unforeseen expenses.
Step 3: Create a Detailed Plan
Map out your renovation step by step. This includes deciding what gets done first (like structural changes before cosmetic updates) and planning around any potential disruptions. Think about timelines, especially around those critical first steps. A solid plan here can save a ton of headaches later on.
While building out a comprehensive reno plan on your own is doable, it’s definitely not the easiest route. Working with an experienced interior designer will save you a ton of time and stress!
Step 4: Research & Choose the Right Contractor
Look for someone with a solid reputation. Check out reviews, ask for references, and don’t be shy about interviewing multiple contractors. You want someone reliable, especially if you’ll be working within a tight renovation window.
Step 5: Secure Permits & Materials Early
Getting permits can be a hassle, but it’s a necessary evil. Start early to avoid delays. The same goes for materials – with the supply chain being what it is, you don’t want to be caught waiting on that special tile you ordered three months ago.
Popular Home Renovations in Calgary in 2024
Aside from its dynamic housing market, Calgary is also known for its architecture (residential and commercial) and evolving design.
If you weren’t able to catch the Calgary Renovation Show a few weeks ago, they shared five renovations that will be trending in 2024 (courtesy of RenovationFind). This info is especially valuable if you’re looking to sell, as you’ll want an idea of what buyers are currently after so you know where to focus your time and money during your home renovations in Calgary.
One of the most impactful ways to improve your home’s energy efficiency is by replacing old windows. Inefficient windows, doors, and skylights can account for up to 25% of total home energy loss!
If retrofitting your windows is on your renovation list, don’t forget about the Canada Greener Home Initiative. Under this program, you may be eligible for a grant of up to $5,000 on ENERGY STAR® certified models.
For potential buyers, the kitchen is one of the first areas inspected. An updated, modern kitchen can significantly increase the attractiveness of your home in the competitive real estate market. Plus, even a minor kitchen remodel can yield an impressive return on investment.
HVAC System Upgrades
Upgrading your HVAC system to a more efficient model not only enhances indoor comfort but also reduces energy consumption, resulting in lower utility bills.
New HVAC systems often come with advanced features like smart thermostats, which allow for better temperature control and remote adjustments for added convenience and appeal.
Like kitchens, updated bathrooms are a key selling point for homes. Homebuyers expect modern and updated bathrooms, so renovating these spaces can significantly boost property appeal and resale value.
The ROI on a bathroom reno is no joke either. Even a minor bathroom remodel can return an average of 102%!
Compared to other renovation projects, painting is relatively inexpensive and still offers a significant impact on your home’s overall aesthetic. A fresh coat of paint can transform the look of your home and make it more appealing to both you and potential buyers.
Stop Waiting. Start Planning!
From selecting the right projects to finding skilled contractors, planning your home renovations in Calgary is a journey that requires careful consideration of several key factors. Whether it’s upgrading your kitchen, enhancing your outdoor space, or adding a new room, each project brings its unique set of rewards and challenges. And there’s no better time to get planning than the present!