Congratulations, you have collected the keys to your new home! The next thing on your to-do list is your renovation. Here are 5 important things to consider before you begin your renovation.
- Choose a reliable interior designer and/or contractor
Do some background check before engaging your interior designer or contractor. Word of mouth recommendations are best because at least your friends or family is about to vouch for them. If you bought a HDB flat, note that for renovation of HDB units, you have to engage a contractor that has registered under the HDB Registered Renovation Contractors’ Scheme Go to the HDB website to check if he or she is on the list. Also, do note that your contractor should be the one applying for renovation permits.
- Ask for a detailed renovation quotation
Ask your contractor to measure your unit and state every work to be done in the quotation as clear as possible. Most of the time, your contractor or interior designer will give a rough estimate of the cost of materials. Don’t be shy to question on whether certain materials or works are necessary for your home. And remember to double-check all individual costs before signing off the contract and paying the deposit.
- Think carefully about major works
An open plan concept may make your home appear bigger but not all walls can be hacked. If you are renovating a HDB unit, it is also necessary for all demolition and hacking of walls (whether partial or full) requires HDB’s prior approval.
- Choose your materials wisely
The industrial chic appearance of cement screed flooring may look amazing but installing and maintaining it may be a whole other story. Cement flooring is tricky to install and may result in uneven surfaces. Easy-to-install and maintain materials such as terrazzo and homogeneous tiles will withstand the test of time. Not only are there numerous versions to choose from, they are also cost-effective and durable. For kitchen countertops, look for durable materials such as quartz and granite.
- Don’t forget the small things
Details such as where to put electrical points and wiring are important. Then there is the decision to be made between whether you want to use gas or electricity to power your cook top. If you opt for gas piping instead of cylinder gas, you will have to get your contractor to liaise with City Gas to connect gas piping to your cooker hood. Also, before you start your renovation, you need to think about and possibly source for utility fixtures for the home. These include things such as water closets, sinks, faucets, water heater tanks and showerheads.