What Are The Home Improvement Tips To Keep Your Sanity?

Taking the dilapidated dwelling shell and bringing it back to life has become a national preoccupation, thanks to reality reno-television and the seeming ease of DIY projects on Pinterest. However, as anyone who watches these shows or attempts these constructions can tell you, the process can drive your relationship and your bank balance to the brink. Whether you plan to extend the kitchen, refit the bathroom, or attempt a “simple” makeover. It’s easy to get excited about a home project at the beginning when the work seems theoretical, and you hear yourself saying things like, “Oh, we could just knock all of these walls out, no problem!” Then reality sets in. The workers you hired go AWOL, your budget is blown, and you can’t find your good shoes under the pile of scrap wood and duct tape. It’s time to take a deep breath and make a plan.

Ways To Maintain Your Sanity

Be Picky With Contractors.

Start by getting leads from friends, family, colleagues and your designer, if you have one. Ask (on Facebook), and you shall receive. Then, on top of their insurance, check their references – not just for the work they’ve done but also for how reliable they are. Are they good at returning calls? Did they start on time each day? Did they stick to the budget? Was the work completed as discussed?

Communication Is Key

When the builders move in, any semblance of sanity tends to move out. Keep the relationship productive and intact by communicating. Get everything in writing, from quotes and plans to payment schedules, expectations and which party will be responsible for the upfront payment of materials and permits. This eliminates any he-said, she-said arguments down the track.

Add To Your Toolkit.

Are you having trouble visualising what you’re working so hard towards? Various apps help you with every decision – reversible and irreversible – from paint colours to room reconfigurations.

Keep Realistic Timeframes

Don’t let the fast-forwarded footage on Grand Designs fool you. That’s usually your initial timeframe, doubled. Save yourself the frustration and disappointment by breaking up the work into bite-size chunks and setting timeframes for each one. And don’t forget to factor in waiting times. Not to be a Negative Nancy, but there will be a holdup on your custom cabinetry, just as the granite colour you chose for your bathroom countertop will be out of stock when you order it from the suppliers.

Come Up With A Budget.

Then add 15 per cent on top of it. There are always creeping costs with labour, miscalculations and unforeseen expenses, such as insect or water damage.

Be As Tidy As Possible.

There’s nothing more annoying than being unable to find your good work shoes under a pile of scrap wood, plaster crumbs, cigarette butts and duct tape. So clean up at the end of each day to ward off stress-related diseases. If possible, make a part of the house construction- and chaos-free by erecting plastic divider curtains to keep dust and debris from getting everywhere.

Know Your Diy Limit

Sure, approach that kitchen cabinetry with some confidence and cockiness, but know when you’re in over your head. Hiring a professional to knock out a part of a project slowing you down can give the renovation momentum and renewed motivation to complete the rest on your own.

Take “Before” Photos.

Document the entire process. When motivations begin to falter, take a look at the photos to remind yourself of how far you’ve come. This couple went one step further and kept a blog to hold themselves accountable for each stage of the renovation process. Updating your friends and family on progress can serve the same purpose.

Get Out Of The House.

And no, we’re not just talking about staying with friends when running water becomes unavailable. Get out of the house to stop the renovations from consuming you. When sourcing a bathroom mirror begins to spiral into weekly shopping trips, daily arguments and continual bedtime web browsing on Gumtree and eBay, take a breather and make time for life; a weekend getaway or dinner where you’re both banned from discussing porcelain splashbacks. The house isn’t as important as your relationship.

Stay Positive

what are the home improvement tips to keep your sanity (2)When it comes to frayed nerves, renovations are right up there with having a newborn child. (Except with the newborn child, it’s not up to you and your partner to customise every minuscule aesthetic detail.) Try to keep your sense of humour throughout the whole ordeal. You may be roughing it in the lounge room, but why not think of it as glamping? Eating from takeout boxes in the soon-to-be foyer? A living-room dinner picnic. Focus on the big picture, and don’t forget why you embarked on this crazy journey in the first place. 

FAQs About The Home Improvement Tips To Keep Your Sanity

The time required to renovate your home is contingent upon a lot of different factors: the size of the space, how long of a time you take to feel comfortable with the design, and how intensive is your renovation (is it just a “pull and replace” project where things are just getting updated, or is the space/ floor plan.

Absolutely yes! You should deep-clean your home even before it hits the market. ... However, as we mentioned above, deep cleaning the house is an effective way to make it more appealing to buyers. Focusing first on cleaning your home top to bottom will make it easier to keep spotless during the whole selling process.

  • Don’t Neglect Curb Appeal.
  • Don’t Overprice Your Home.
  • Don’t Skimp on Listing Photos.
  • Don’t Neglect Repairs.
  • Don’t Hide Problems in the home.
  • Don’t Over-PersonaliseOver-Personalise the Space.
  • Don’t Refuse to Entertain Low Offers.
  • Don’t Show Up During Showings.

The short answer is yes, empty houses take longer to sell than furnished, occupied or staged homes. A study from the Appraisal Institute found that vacant houses sold for 6% less than occupied houses and stayed on the market longer.

How To Create A Sanity-Saving Office Space?

Keep papers out of sight, out of mind.

UtiliseUtilise drawer space and employ a chic noticeboard to prevent reminders from littering your desk space. Invest in simple desk and drawer organisers for safe and secure documents. Use boxes and trays in a uniform hue to conceal other items and tie the look together.

Be Minimalistic

Do you need hundreds of pens, highlighters or pencils? Store away unnecessary items and use one at a time until they need to be replaced. Keep everyday items on top of the desk and pack away everything else. Don’t let a rogue paperclip distract you from that important task.

Create A Study Nook

Do you have a tucked-away corner in your living room? Transform this into a study nook by adding a simple desk and incorporating complimentary items such as a clock, plant, framed pictures or a sculptural piece.

Pare Back The Colour Palette

Having lots of colours creates visual clutter, whereas sticking to one or two accent colours to maintain consistency and create a zen look in your workspace. So when shopping for stationery and desk accessories, try opting for white, black and neutral tones or else you could stick to a few pastel shades if you prefer some colour.

Accent Your Style

Create a chic look by adding metallic hues such as rose gold, copper or brass in small details such as paperclips, pens and desk accessories.

Vertical Storage

Lacking space in your office area? Vertical shelving increases the space in the room quickly and stylishly while also making things easy to find. It’s also a great way to keep your desk space clear and usable, as well as keep personal and inspirational items on display.

Add Some Plants

Soften the mood and create a down-to-earth feel by decorating with leafy green plants, succulents and simple florals. Additionally, these emit oxygen, fight negative energy and add a beautiful natural feel to your office.

Keep It Consistent

Decorate your home office within the theme of your existing decor. Don’t recreate a new look for a small space. Boho, coastal or modern eclectic styles enable great opportunities to embrace colour and patterns in your workspace through accessories and upholstery.

Cleaning Tips Before Selling Your Home

If you sell your home, you want to present it in the best possible light. You want to maximise your chance of getting the best possible selling price and so cleaning your house before the sale is incredibly important. It will present your house well and means prospects will find your house more appealing. In this article, we share 12 cleaning tips before selling your home.

Pre Showing Cleaning Tips Before Selling Your Home

Fix Plaster & Other Maintenance

If you’ve lived in your house for a while, chances are you have had pictures and similar ones on the wall. Picture hooks can leave holes in plaster. There may also be scuff marks and paint stains on the wall. You need to make sure your walls are clean and fresh before putting your house on the market.

Clean Appliances

Clean your oven and your stovetop. Potential buyers will pay attention to the little things. You should clear as many appliances as possible off your benches if you can. Less clutter is better when you are trying to sell your house.

Dust Fittings

Dust your light fittings. It will make your room smell nicer and look brighter.

Clean Sinks

A dirty sink is noticeable and will make the rest of the house look dirty. Clean your sinks. Make sure they shine.

Clean Windows

A clean window will make the rest of the house look brighter. Make sure you clean your windows thoroughly – inside and outside. Clear up any cobwebs and make sure there are no streaks. Potential buyers will notice.

Clean Floors

what are the home improvement tips to keep your sanity (1)You should scrub your tiles, and you should steam clean your carpets too (whilst you’re at it, you should steam clean your furniture too – or use staging furniture.) It would be best if you cleaned any floorboards you have too. Don’t forget to do the skirting boards too. They can build up a lot of dust over time so give them a good wipe down.  

Don’t Forget Outside The House.

Someone interested in buying your house will pay attention to the front yard and backyard too. You should mow your lawns, trim the plants and generally clean up any rubbish.

Before Showings – Cleaning Tips Before Selling Your Home

The 5-Minute Rule

If your house is on the market, you need to be ready for potential showings of your house at any time. Suppose your Real Estate Agent has a potential buyer you need to be ready to see your house at 5 minutes notice. Ensure that any clutter around your house, whilst it’s on the market, can be cleaned within 5 minutes.

Focus On Kitchen And Bathroom

The bathroom and the kitchen are two key areas of the house and can be two of your biggest selling points. Make sure you wipe down any surfaces before someone comes and looks through your house. Whatever you do, make sure that you don’t leave any dishes in the sink.

Take Out The Rubbish

Rubbish is messy, and rubbish smells. If your Real Estate Agent rings you and tells you that he has someone that wants to look through your house, one of the first things that you should do is take out the rubbish.

Pick Up Toys & Remove Clutter

 If you have children, you need to make sure any toys are put away before anyone comes and looks through your house. Clean up magazines, letters and other piles of clutter too. Someone interested in buying your house will pay attention to the front yard and 

backyard too. You should mow your lawns, trim the plants and generally clean up any rubbish.

Things Before Putting Your Home On The Market

You can take steps before putting your home on the market to increase your chances of receiving a solid offer from a buyer. From cleaning and staging to re-painting and depersonalising.

Research Your Local Housing Market

First and foremost, make sure to do your homework on the value of your home. Start by researching the local housing market through Realtor.com. Next, look at comparable sales in your neighbourhood to figure out the appropriate listing price for your home. Next, pay attention to the various comps’ square footage, features and location. Finally, think about how they compare to your home. For example, your neighbour’s home may have sold for $1 million, but if your home is considerably smaller, you’ll most likely need to list your house for less. Of course, a reputable Realtor should be able to assist with finding comps and determining a listing price for your house.

Find A Listing Agent.

Speaking of Realtors, we highly recommend enlisting a professional real estate agent to list your home. You should be able to find a Realtor through Realtor.com and word-of-mouth recommendations. When interviewing a listing agent, be sure to ask about their experience in your neighbourhood, connections to potential buyers and social media expertise. In addition, the Realtor should be able to give you a thoroughly laid out plan for how they are going to sell your home. For advice on choosing the right Realtor, check here.

Buy More Light Bulbs.

Go ahead and stock up on light bulbs. When showing your house to potential buyers, all light fixtures and lamps will need to be turned on. For this reason, all lights in your home must have working light bulbs.

Give Your House A Deep Clean

First impressions mean a lot. So don’t let foul smells, dirty floors or dusty surfaces make a bad one on a potential buyer. Before listing your home (and throughout the selling process), give your home a deep clean. This means cleaning toilets, wiping down surfaces, mopping floors, cleaning rugs and scrubbing bathrooms. Consider calling in the professionals (think: Stanley Steamer and a housekeeper) to ensure that your place is in pristine condition.

Declutter The Home

Decluttering and organising your space will go a long way in appealing to potential buyers. When a home is clutter-free, buyers can focus on the actual home instead of the junk, knick-knacks and overflowing closets. For advice on purging your belongings before a move, check here. 

Call A Handyman

When selling a house, you should have your handyman on speed dial. Make sure anything and everything that needs to be fixed (think: locks, hardware, leaky faucets, running toilets, cracks in the walls, broken appliances, squeaky doors, etc.) has been taken care of before listing a home. Otherwise, buyers may think your home hasn’t been well cared for, which can be a turn-off for many. For advice on finding a handyperson when you move, check here.

Paint The Walls

Now’s the time to re-paint your home. Start by painting over bright orange and green walls with neutral colours. Stick to whites, light greys, light beiges, and “greige” wall colours. These shades will make your home appear bigger, brighter and more welcoming. Adding a fresh coat of paint to your home will help cover the wall’s imperfections and convey a blank slate to potential buyers.

Stage Your Home

According to multiple studies, staging a home really can help it sell faster and for more money. Fortunately, staging your home’s interior is easy and affordable. Here are ten ways to stage a home on a budget before listing it for sale. Don’t also forget to spruce up your home’s curb appeal when staging the home. After all, the outside of the home is the first thing potential buyers will see when they pull up for a showing. So make sure that the grass is cut, the yard is landscaped, and the knick-knacks are gone (think: gnomes and children’s toys). Finally, if your home is looking a bit rundown, you should consider adding a fresh coat of paint to the exterior walls.

Hire A Professional Photographer

Given that many potential buyers search for homes online, it’s crucial to include high quality, professional photos in your online listing. Without excellent high-resolution images, potential buyers may (sadly) overlook your home. So before putting it on the market, go ahead and hire a professional photographer to snap photos of your clean and staged abode. Keep in mind that a Realtor should help find a photographer, so be sure to ask who they use when interviewing real estate agents for the job.

Rent A Storage Unit

Selling a home successfully will involve some decluttering and purging of your belongings. For this reason, go ahead and rent a temporary storage unit before selling your home. Having a self-storage unit nearby will give you somewhere to temporarily place all of your extra stuff when staging and showing the home.

Depersonalise Your Home

You want to strike the perfect balance between depersonalisation and creating a warm, welcoming home when selling a home. This means putting away most framed photos, bulletin boards and personal items (think: photo albums, magazines, toys, equipment, awards, etc.) throughout the home. Instead, leave a few nice, framed photos around the house to make the home appear inviting and lived in.


So you’ve spruced up your home, put it on the market and sold it. Congrats! Now it’s time to start planning your move. To find a reliable and trustworthy moving company, check Moving.com’s extensive network of movers. We make it easy to compare quotes from hundreds of long-distance movers and local movers near you – free of cost. In addition, all relocation companies in our network are licensed and insured, so you can rest assured that your move will be in good hands—best of luck and happy moving.

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