Top 25 Biggest Renovating Mistakes

From ignoring prep work and safety to setting unrealistic budgets, find out how to avoid these mistakes and more when renovating.

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Buying Cheap Materials

Don’t Sweat It host Steve Watson says, “One of the biggest mistakes that people make when it comes to home renovation (is that) they try to be cheap when they buy materials. The bottom line is, you’re going to get what you pay for.”

Carpenter Jimmy Little adds his two cents: “If you’re going to do it, do it. If you can’t afford to do it, wait.”

 

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Inaccurate Measurements

Nancy Soriano, former editor in chief of Country Living magazine says, “I can’t emphasize enough how an inch or even sometimes a half an inch can make a difference. And if your dimensions are off and it’s not equal and symmetrical, you’re not going to get the full impact and effect that you want. If you’re not sure about how to measure or you can’t follow the directions, don’t hesitate at all to call somebody. Ask them to come over and take the measurement for you.”
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Skipping the Prep Work

“Do it the right way, right away,” says Carey. “You shouldn’t avoid your prep work. You want to take the time to do it right and right from the beginning.”

Contractor Jim Collins says, “It’s a horrible, tedious process, and nobody likes it, but it saves so much time later on down the way. And that’s what you’re trying to do: save yourself money and time.”

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Gutting Everything

“Make sure you have a well-set plan before you start your renovations, because you don’t want to go in there and just clear everything out, when you might be able to work around some areas,” warns Carey Evans of Don’t Sweat It.

“I see this time and time again where people just start, and they think they’re going to pull a piece of wallpaper off, and by the time the process is over, they’ve completely gotten themselves into a deep, dark hole that’s very difficult to get out of,” adds Eric Stromer of Over Your Head.

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Excessive Use of Duct Tape

Save the duct tape for decorative purposes only. “My esteemed colleagues, duct tape is not a permanent solution. It is merely a temporary fix,” says Eric.

“People use duct tape because it’s cheap and it’s quick and it’s easy, but it’s definitely a temporary solution. Don’t leave it up for more than a couple hours, ever,” Jimmy adds.

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