Stuck inside and dreaming about the updates you want to make to your home or business this summer? Whether you’re envisioning a fresh look with new siding, hoping to improve energy efficiency with new windows, or eager to finally build the deck you’ve always dreamed of, now is the time to start planning.
Start Planning Now — Get a Jump Start on Your Summer Project
These cooler months are the perfect time to make a game plan to update your exterior this summer. When you start now, you have plenty of time to make a thorough plan for both design and budget before your project begins. Plus,
- It’s easier to get on your contractor’s calendar. Contractors tend to book up fast for spring and summer. The sooner you schedule with them, the more likely you’ll be able to get your project done this summer.
- You’ll have more time to focus on creating your plan. Once the spring thaw hits, yard work, landscaping, and other outdoor projects can swallow up your free time. If you start planning during the cooler months when you can’t do outdoor projects, you’ll be better able to focus on your plan.
Planning is crucial. Making updates to your property’s exterior isn’t something that happens with the snap of your fingers — to get the results you want, you need to make a plan.
Here’s what to think about when planning your exterior updates.
Determine Your “Why”
First, determine your motivation for updating your exterior. What is driving you to make updates? Maybe one of these sounds familiar:
- It’s time for a change in appearance
- I need to have repairs or maintenance done due to winter damage
- I want to make updates to improve energy efficiency
- I’m getting ready to sell and need to maximize my property’s curb appeal
- I want my home or business to stand out from neighboring properties
No matter your “why”, it’s helpful to know what is motivating you as you make plans for your upcoming project.
Make a Priority List: Must-Haves vs Likes
Next, create a priority list for all of the updates you want. Separate your must-haves from the things you’d like to do if budget and time allow. For example, if you need to make repairs to roofing or siding that was damaged over the winter, that would likely take precedence over any cosmetic changes you want to make.
As you make your list, also consider if there is anything you’d like to splurge on if budget allows, such as building your dream deck or swapping out still-functional siding for a new color.
This list will help you prioritize your updates as you set your budget and create a schedule with your contractor.
Research Material, Color, and Design Options
Take some time to research materials, colors, and design elements for your project. Look at current home exterior trends for ideas, gathering inspiration from home shows, internet searches, social media, and so on.
Look into the different products available, making note of their manufacturers as well as the styles and colors available. Take note of specific features and product characteristics you like or that are must-haves due to the climate your building is located in or other needs. Bring all of these notes when you meet with your contractor to discuss the details of your project.
Set Your Budget
It’s vital to set a realistic budget for your project. To do this, list each expense line by line. Don’t focus solely on the big ticket items when setting your budget: very often, it’s the little things in a remodel that add up and have the potential to blow your budget.
Make sure to plan for contingencies as well. In the course of completing your project, your contractor could uncover an issue you didn’t know you had, like a plumbing leak, water damage, or termites. A good rule of thumb is to tack on an additional 10-15% to your budget for unexpected expenses.
Planning a big project? Consider doing it in phases. For instance, if you want to replace all of the windows in your home or commercial building, that’s a huge project that can take a lot of time and expense. You may want to consider doing half of your windows this year and the rest next year so your budget doesn’t take such a big hit.
Meet With Your Contractor to Make a Plan
A reputable, qualified contractor is an invaluable part of any exterior project. The right contractor is just as important as (if not more than) the actual products used.
Hiring the wrong contractor can lead to disappointment with how the job turns out or the quality of customer service you receive. Plus, if the work isn’t done correctly, your project could end up costing you more in the form of future repairs or even having to redo the project entirely. You want a contractor who has your best interest in mind and who gets the work done right the first time.
With decades of experience and hundreds of satisfied clients, Hoyt Exteriors is a contractor you can trust. Contact us today to discuss your plans to update your exteriors this summer and get on our calendar.