The 10 Stages of Remodeling a Home That Needs a Lot of Work

Dated: February 15 2021

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So many houses and condos haven’t been given the proper TLC over the years. When shopping for a home, it’s not uncommon to find houses that, at best, haven’t been updated in decades, or, at worst, have fallen into a complete state of disrepair.

Some people are scared off by homes that need a lot of work, while others are brave enough to take on the challenge. And whether you decide to do the work yourself or hire a general contractor to manage the process, you’ll still have to go through the all-too-common stages of home remodeling.

So if you’re in the thick of a project (and a whole bunch of dust), just remember that you’re not alone. Here are the ten stages you should expect to go through when remodeling a home that needs a lot of work:

1. The optimism stage

“This won’t be so bad. Just a simple, one-month project. Out with the old, in with the new.”

2. The demolition/loud noises stage

It sounds (and smells) like a helicopter crashing through a Home Depot. And that’s before you try to rip out old flooring.

3. The finding out-it’s-worse than you thought stage

Good rule of thumb: there’s always gonna be something messed up behind a wall, or under the carpet, or above the ceiling, or…

4. The having-serious-doubts stage

Why didn’t I just go for the smaller, updated house…

5. The finally-completing-one-section-and-taking-photos-of-it stage

Progress! Snap a photo and post it to the ‘gram with the caption: “Still a lot of work to get done, but the new place is coming along! #homeremodel”

6. The realizing-you’re-way-over-budget-and-past-deadline stage

Just add twenty percent and two months to any estimate right off the bat.

7. The consider-selling-it-and-buying-an-updated-home stage

This is rock bottom, when you consider selling the half-finished home ‘as-is’, just to get out of it.

8. The week-when-there-finally-seems-to-be-a-lot-of-progress stage

Ahhhh, there’s an end in sight!

9. The last-hiccup-which-takes-forever-to-fix stage

It wouldn’t be a remodeling project if there wasn’t one nagging (but visually striking) piece that had to be custom ordered from Morocco.

10. The everything-is-done-and-it-was-totally-worth-it stage

But in the end, it’s always worth it. Everything is brand new and exactly how you wanted it.

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Nicole Gates

As a wife, mother of 5, retired military spouse, Yuba/Sutter native, and a seasoned real estate professional, Nicole recognizes and values the trust her clients place in her. She strives every day to ....

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