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Are You Planning Significant Improvements for Your Home? Beware These Common Pitfalls

According to the Hanover 2021 “Home Renovation Report,” 70 percent of homeowners planned to improve their homes in 2022. While this can be fun and a good investment, there are a few pitfalls to watch out for. Make sure you think about these four things before moving ahead with your home renovation project.

Costs Have Risen Recently

A quick look at the news most days will include information about rising costs, including in the construction industry. Whether you’re adding a deck or remodeling your entire home, expect to pay considerably more in 2022 than you might have just a couple of years ago. As a result, it’s vital to crunch the numbers and decide whether renovating or moving is cheaper in the end.

There are multiple reasons why construction costs have escalated:

  • Supply shortages related to Covid and international shipping delays
  • Labor shortages
  • Rising transportation costs, especially the price of gasoline

Contractors Vary in Ability and Credentials

It can be tempting to hire a friend of a friend to do your construction job, but you want to make sure any contractor you work with has the skills and credentials you need. So be sure to check references, even if you know someone personally.

Also, anyone working on your home should be licensed and insured. This protects both of you in the event of an accident or problem with the construction later. If a general contractor is collaborating with a group of subcontractors for electrical, plumbing, and other specialty work, they may also want to have a bond. This covers them if one of the subcontractors fails to hold up their end of the contract to get the work done correctly and on time.

Building Permits Will Likely Be Required

Many construction projects require building permits. Don’t be tempted to save time and money by skipping this process. You could face stiff fines or be unable to sell your property later if an addition or renovation was executed without the proper permit. Your contractor can help you with this. However, prepare for it to take longer and potentially involve permission from neighbors if your project encroaches on property lines or may affect other people’s homes.

Your Home Insurance Coverage Will Need to Be Updated

Any serious upgrades to your property need to be reflected in your home insurance policy. Otherwise, if something happens to the home, you might not receive the compensation you need for repairs or rebuilding.

Be sure to let us know when you make home improvements to your property and our independent agents will help you adjust your policy accordingly. Call First West Insurance at 714-842-2523 with your questions, or reach out online to start a quote.