HOW TO PREPARE YOUR HOUSE FOR AN INTEGRAL REFORM. At Mobile Diseño we know that the moment of reforming a dwelling is feared and dreamt of by many. Dreaded because the inconvenience and the break with routine are inevitable things that are always associated with carrying out building work. Dreamed of because, at last, you will have your home just the way you want it, which is sure to increase the comfort and benefits of being able to live in it.
Bearing all this in mind, the starting point for the renovation can be found long before the workers arrive to carry out the renovation. The truth is that the first thing to do is to plan the preparation of the home so that the workers do not encounter any obstacles in their work and so that nothing of what they wish to preserve is damaged. Let’s take a closer look at how to prepare a house before renovation.
Empty or furnished house?
It makes a big difference whether you have to plan a renovation in a house that is inhabited, with all that this entails in terms of furniture and personal belongings, or if it is a house that is completely uninhabited because it has just been purchased.
The second case is the least problematic. It will be necessary to take into account some extremes such as avoiding disturbing the neighbours or protecting some elements that we are interested in preserving. In this last sense, it could be the floor of the house because it is in perfect condition or doors and other similar elements. At Mobile Diseño we take care of each one of these details to avoid problems.
However, as we say, the reform of an empty house is easier to prepare than that of an inhabited dwelling and later we will see in more detail those extremes that we have said need to be taken into account with greater attention.
In an inhabited house, it is also necessary to avoid disturbing the neighbours and, of course, the elements that need to be preserved must also be protected. In other words, you have to do exactly the same as in an empty house. However, the task does not end with these two options.
Living with the renovation is an option that many people choose as long as it does not affect vital spaces such as the bathroom or kitchen, although, for today’s post, moving out is the same as staying in the house.
However, the least that needs to be done is to remove all the furniture and personal belongings from the areas where the workers are going to work and decide whether they can be stored in a room away from the dust and dangers of a building site or whether they can be left at home in a room.
But it can also happen that furniture and personal belongings do not fit in any way in the areas of the house where the renovation is to take place. In this sense, the most common options are to rent a storage room or a storeroom where personal belongings can be kept safe for the duration of the work carried out by the workers.
Although this may seem like just another investment, the truth is that a storage room is very economical in a period of one, two or three months, something that can be profitable in order to know that all the furniture and other objects that you want to protect will be safe.
Moving or living with the renovation?
Although we already pointed this out in the previous section, a fundamental question when a reform is going to begin, especially if it is going to affect large areas of the home, is whether it is necessary to move or not.At Mobile Diseño we always like to point out that it is necessary to be clear in this regard that a reform can be tremendously uncomfortable, however small it may be. Just think of the inconvenience caused by painting the walls of a dwelling or making a new wall in a room. And these are small interventions, nothing compared to completely renovating a kitchen or the only bathroom available in a house.
But renovations are not only inconvenient, they are also dangerous. Living with building materials, tools and debris can lead to injuries, which is completely incompatible with the comfort you should have at home.
Moreover, if you live with children, things become much more complicated. A couple or a single person can isolate themselves adequately within a room and reduce the space they need to avoid the dangers of a building site to a minimum.
With children it is more difficult, as they will not adapt very well to having to live in a room and may not understand the risks involved with building materials or workers’ tools.
Really, the best advice that can always be given is, if you have the money and the work is going to be major, to leave the house as soon as it starts and come back when everything is finished. This advice applies to everyone, but even more so to families living with children because of the details mentioned above, which can be fatal in many cases.
Identify everything of value
Once the decision has been made to stay in the house or to go out for the duration of the renovation, one of the most important moments in preparing a house for renovation is to identify everything that you want to keep.
Instead of going crazy protecting everything in the house, the renovation may be the perfect time to consider whether we really need everything we have accumulated over the years. Yes, a good way to start a renovation is by clearing out.
We may realise that we really do have a lot of items that are useless and haven’t been used for years, so it may be better to get rid of them rather than having to protect and store them.
Keys to protecting furniture and surfaces
Failure to properly protect the items mentioned above is almost as serious as leaving furniture and other items lying around when you start renovating your home. The result will be obvious: it will all end up in the rubbish bin.
The good thing is that it doesn’t cost anything to protect the elements we have talked about, which is why at Mobile Diseño we take care, before starting the reform, of protecting all those objects or furniture that have been previously set aside.
Important and delicate areas of the house must also be protected. In this list we detail them one by one so that you can see how the process has to be carried out:
Flooring: having a quality parquet or marble floor is something that, unless it is for aesthetic reasons, must be maintained. There are surfaces that are worth preserving despite a renovation, especially if they are in good condition.
Windows: in many cases, windows, whether PVC or aluminium, can suffer from renovation. If you want to keep them because they are in good condition and are of good quality, you must take action to prevent deterioration.
Doors: something similar to what happened with windows happens with doors. The door itself can always be taken off its hinges and stored somewhere safe. Frames are another matter. Some can be unscrewed for protection, which will require you to aim for the area that corresponds to each piece that is removed.
Other surfaces: don’t forget other things you may want to keep that you can’t store. We are referring, for example, to the kitchen or bathroom worktop or the sanitary ware in your bathrooms.
As we have already said, the ideal thing to do is to take everything you want to keep out of the house or store it in a safe room inside the home. However, with the items we have just seen, this is not possible, so it is worth a little effort to get them through the renovation without any damage or accidents.
Preparation starts with the communal areas
It may seem to you that we have already covered all the issues in the home and that there is nothing of importance left to consider when preparing a house for renovation. However, if you live in a community of owners, your home neither begins nor ends at the front door.
The common areas are also part of it and, moreover, are shared with the neighbours, so you have to be very careful not to spoil them. Moreover, before we consider protecting the common areas, what we should all do is to notify the community itself about the reform that is going to take place.
This should be done to the managers of the same property or to the board of directors of the same. However, the reform should not be notified until the appropriate permits have been obtained. This is something that many people forget in the preparation of the property and which is fundamental. A visit to the town hall is enough to receive the permits and avoid problems with the community in which you live or with the authorities, and permission is even necessary to install a waste container on the public road.
All in all, once the permits have been obtained and the property has been notified of the reform, the important thing is to take care of the communal elements. At Mobile Diseño, we also take care of this aspect, protecting floors, stairs, doors and, very especially, the community lift.
This last element tends to suffer considerably in reforms. In addition to covering its floor and walls to avoid problems, it is essential to ensure that the workers who are going to carry out the refurbishment do not load it beyond its limits and that they use it with the rest of the neighbours in mind, something that is especially important in properties that only have one.
If all of the above is taken into account, the truth is that there should not be any problems during the reform. Protecting the house is not as complicated as it may seem, as long as you follow the advice given above. All of this, of course, starting with a good organisation of what is worth preserving and what is not, and bearing in mind that the home starts from the very door of the property, so the common areas of the building must also be taken into account in all of this.