Planning a Room Makeover: Part 1
By Penny Johnson
Making over a room can be great fun, and can really improve your home when it is complete. However it can also be hard work and cost a lot of money – so you want to be sure you get it right. What do you need to think about before you start? Planning can seem a bit of a bore if you just want to get on with it, but it is usually worth the bother in the long run.
What Do You Want To Achieve?
Spend a bit of time thinking about the room you are going to make over. What do you like about it? Which features do you want to keep? What don’t you like about it?
What do you want the room to do? Do you need it to have more storage space, less clutter, more light, a more relaxing mood? When you have given this some thought, number your list in order of importance. Which change will make the most difference?
How Much Can You Spend?
Budget is important – it’s not much use having a wonderful new room if you can’t enjoy it because you are worrying about your credit card bills! Be realistic here, and think about other things you might want to spend your money on.
How important is your makeover compared to your next family holiday? Compared to the money you want to spend next Christmas? If your new room really is the most important thing you want to spend on, fair enough, but do think about it first.
What Work Needs to Be Done?
This is where you need to look at your priority list and your budget together. For example, you want the walls to be a different colour. Are you going to paint them or put up new wallpaper? How much paint or paper do you need, and how much is it going to cost?
Or if you want new carpets, what quality of carpet do you need? How many square feet is your room, so how much will the carpet cost?
Work through your priority list like this, adding up the total until you reach your budget limit. This is how much you can do.
Who and When?
Who is going to do the work? Doing it yourself can be great fun, but be wary of trying your hand at wallpapering for the first time with expensive paper or on a room with lots of corners, windows or doors. If you want to do it yourself, consider painting rather than papering.
If you need furniture made to measure, can you do it or do you need to find a handyman to do it? If you have having a new carpet or other flooring, it is probably best to get it fitted professionally unless you already have experience in that kind of DIY. If your partner is going to do the work, does he know about it yet?
You also need to think about how long it will take. Don’t forget to allow for time to empty the room (which may involve sorting out loads of stuff you forgot you owned), and then putting it all back again when the makeover is finished. If you are papering a room, it could take a couple of days for the wallpapering, and you also need to allow time for paint to dry, and so on.
All of this is not a problem if you can manage without the room for a week or so, and also put up with the furniture and other stuff from the room being stored in other places in the house, but if you are doing a bathroom or kitchen you may not have that luxury and you may need to call in a few favours and invite some friends round for the weekend to help you.
If you are having new carpets or flooring, you will need to co-ordinate your decorating with the delivery time and fitting of the flooring. You don’t want to still be painting or papering when the new carpet is down, so you need to make sure you have finished that part of the job before the flooring arrives.
You don’t want to delay the flooring for too long either, or you may end up putting your furniture back into the room and then having to take it all out again when the flooring arrives.