How to Live Through a Renovation

Here are a few helpful tips…

  Whether you’re renovating in your home for the first time, or you have some experience living through a reno, you can understand or imagine how stressful it can be. Especially during these unprecedented times of Covid-19 with many of us working from home. With nowhere to escape during the day, it can seem even more hectic. From random contractors coming and going all throughout the day, to feeling like your privacy is being invaded, or even not being able to keep your house clean no matter how hard you try. These are just a few examples of the nuisances you might face during a home renovation. Here are some of the common problems we face during a renovation and some simple tricks to help you feel a little more at peace.

Common Problems You May Face During a Renovation:


  Contractors typically hang plastic sheeting to minimize the transfer of dust, but it is not a foolproof system. Some contractors spend time at the end of the working day cleaning in an attempt to manage the dust. But somehow the dust still ends 3 floors up and has the awful habit of getting into anything and everything. But there are ways to help ‘bust the dust’. Firstly, When weather permits, never underestimate the power of opening a window for some much-needed fresh air. Instead of using a duster or other cleaning products obsessively, an air purifier could alleviate some of the dust and even some of the chemicals that could be released into the air. Air quality has a direct impact on our overall health, so it’s more important than ever to be mindful – especially during a renovation.


  The sounds associated with renovations can be unbearable to say the least. Drilling, hammering, tools dropping, and the chatter of contractors are just a few examples. Not only can it be annoying to you, it can also bother your neighbours. Besides the obvious answer of just simply leaving your house and fleeing to the nearest coffee shop, there are a few ways to drown out the incessant noise of a home renovation. The most important thing to do about noise is know when to expect it. Your general contractor should have set hours for work to take place. You can manage your neighbour’s expectations by explaining to them that they can expect noise only during certain hours. Maybe get your neighbours a small gift to show your appreciation when the renovation is completed. For yourself, having a room that is far away from the renovation action is important, especially when working from home. There are a few other trusted tricks to use when trying to drown out the noise: earplugs, white noise machines, fans, noise cancelling headphones and even turning on some music or the TV as background noise could be of some help.


  Delays happen in life, and they especially happen during renovations. The smallest part of a renovation can set back the timeline of the project by a great deal, causing a ripple effect. For example, if the floor tile is on backorder for another two weeks, you can’t go ahead and install the new baseboard yet. Perhaps you’ll opt for different tiles, but even that takes time. Remaining positive while understanding that delays happen is the key to happiness during a renovation. There are many working components to a renovation, and it is not always going to be smooth. Flexibility on the homeowners and the contractor’s part is needed. Perhaps you could choose a few options for fixtures and furnishings instead of having just one front runner for each. The other key about materials is ordering them as soon as you possibly can. In fact, it should be one of the first things you do after consulting with your design professional as some materials can take weeks or even months. Another thing that can prevent delays is ensuring all your permits and inspections are done well before you attempt to begin your project. Permits vary depending on your area, so make sure to do your due diligence by consulting with a professional to better understand what is needed for your project. Speaking of professionals, some projects should be left up to them. In todays day and age, it’s so easy to watch a Youtube video and think you can handle it. By avoiding certain DIY projects and leaving them up to the professionals, you can save plenty of time, further preventing delays, or having to redo the project from the beginning.   

Handling Contractors

  Having strangers coming in and out of your home day after day can get exhausting during a renovation. You lose track of who is doing what, and you never really know who is going to be there and when. But, without contractors, your beautiful renovation project would never happen in the first place. It can be hard to keep track of who is who and what is what, but when you use a design or contracting service, you can get a better handle on what to expect on what day. There are a few ways you can remain calm during the contractor chaos. First, you need to understand that they are the experts and it can be hard to just simply leave them alone, but they are there to do a job and to help you. Bombarding them with questions distracts them from their work. Perhaps wait until there is time to chat when they aren’t busy working. You could decide on a predetermined time everyday to discuss the project or find out if you can call them to discuss things outside of work hours. Other noteworthy tips include designating a bathroom for the contractors to use, showing kindness by offering them a cool drink on a hot day, or even getting to know their names. Kindness goes a long way!

Not being able to use certain rooms

  So, you’ve decided to go ahead and renovate your master bathroom. Maybe you’re even renovating your entire kitchen. Maybe you’re doing both! Whatever rooms you are renovating, it’s going to cause you some minor inconveniences. So now you’re stuck sharing a bathroom with your kids, or you can’t cook food in your kitchen for a week. It is almost always advisable if you’re taking on a large project to leave your house if you can, at least for the beginning stages of a renovation. It can be a great excuse to use some of your vacation days – but leaving isn’t always an option. When renovating a bathroom, it can be tough having to share, especially in the busier times during the morning or at night. The best way to overcome this is to simply have a schedule. If you have a powder room, designate that as a place to use the toilet or even to brush your teeth. It would cut down on the time spent in the bathroom when also bathing. Some people could bathe at night, some in the morning. Where there is a will, there is a way! For a major kitchen renovation there are quite a few options. Maybe you haven’t used your barbecue in a while. Here is your chance! Paper or bio-degradable plates/cutlery are your friend, as no one wants to do dishes in their bathroom sink. Takeout can be expensive, but what better time to have a pizza party! You could always purchase a hot plate and make simple meals too. When grocery shopping during a renovation, grab and go food products are key. Renovations may cause a lot of temporary change in your day to day activities, but who is to say that it can’t be fun!

  Renovations are not easy to live through, but everything can be managed with a few simple tricks. Sometimes it’s the small things like noise cancelling headphones that end up being the big things that help you maintain your sanity during a renovation. These solutions are just a few ideas to aid you on your renovation journey, and hopefully they inspire a few of your own.

A4 Group