If you are new to renovating I would strongly suggest that for your first project you tackle a manageable job.
My favourite renovator to flip requires just a few things.
1. Garden tidy up, not a major landscaping job.
2. New Carpet. Nothing lifts and modernizes a house like new carpet.
3. Patch and plaster the walls, then paint.
4. Maybe new kitchen bench tops
That’s it. I call this a level one refurbishment. It can often be done inside two weeks. Our current home we did it in 8 days. It was hard work but its out of the way quickly. I like this kind of makeover because it can quickly improve the value of a home by $50,000. It works best in homes at the lower price scale $350,000-$550,000. In our area in Australia there is nothing cheaper than that.
This end of the market moves quickly and many people just want to have a home that feels and smells new. The carpet and paint make it feel as no one has ever lived there before.
A spray paint of the roof may be in order if the tiles or iron are old faded or stained. This can be done cheaply but a contractor may charge the earth.
The next level of renovation is where you make serious structural changes. This is appropriate if the home is in an upmarket area, if the home is already of considerable value and if you are certain that by extending and changing the house there is a good return. We looked at a house for $660,000 recently. A new by similar home which had a $300,000 renovation done sold for $1,200,000. This home is in a street that adjoined a upmarket area. As time goes on more and more homes receive an expensive renovation, bringing up the value of the area. so this house is worth buying, holding for a year or two and then renovating. Perhaps it will increase in value enough without doing anything to it.
That raises an important question, should you renovate at all, or just rent it out for a while and take the capital gain. The location and the state of the market will tell you.
If you do undertake a large renovation by yourself, you will need a good kit of tools, lots of time, a good budget, good trade skills and a good marriage.
Remember the golden rules of renovating.
1. It always takes longer than you expect it to.
2. It always costs more than you expect it too
3. It is always more stressful than to expect.
4. If you think your job will be different, you are wrong!
5. Be prepared to outsource and delegate.
Be realistic, don’t bite off more than you can chew and renovating can be fun and financially rewarding.