Expert advice from professional organizer Jodi Virgil of Organized Solutions Bermuda
In 2017, my spring cleaning went to a whole new level. I decided to do home renovations. And not just one room. And not just replacing one set of doors and windows. I decided to do the whole house. Gulp! I was both excited, but it was also a bit stressful too! But not to worry. If you are like me and you are thinking of doing a little “fixing up”, here are six simple organising tips to ensure your house is “renovation ready” and you don’t break your budget.
1. Start at the END
Think about what you want your space to look like and how it will function once the renovations are completed.
Put aside a chunk of time to make a list and even draw out what you want. (Don’t worry, you don’t have to be a full-time artist) Even if you do a brainstorm to get you started, it will help to move your plan along. When you communicate these decisions to your contractor right from the start, it will save money later because you won’t have to keep making change requests. (Hint: Create a spreadsheet that you can refer to throughout the project).
Whether you are doing major renovations, or a one-off project, here are some key questions to ask:
- What will the overall space be used for?
- How will you operate in the space? What will you do? How will you do it?
- Where will the items be stored, so they are fully accessible?
2. Document the DETAILS
Put everything in writing right from the start. Make sure you have contracts in place and create a spreadsheet of the needed tasks. Divide the entire project into phases and arrange for drop-down payments to occur after phase completions. This will keep everyone on the same page and accountable. Reach out to trusted friends (who know about these things) to get their opinions too.
Key Tips: Keep all receipts and track what is being spent- a simple spreadsheet will do this – or just a simple list and a calculator!
3. Pare down your STUFF
Renovations are a great time to declutter! You will have less to manage and it will help you clarify what you will need after the renovations are done. Choose one area at a time and bring all “like items” together, to clearly see what you have. Decide what you will keep, donate, or dispose of. There are so many organisations on island that are ready to receive what we no longer need.
4. Pack with a PLAN
Whether you are staying in your home or moving out, we always have “stuff to pack up” as we prepare ourselves. Again, start at the end and plan. Go through each of your “newly pared down rooms” and place the items in clearly labeled boxes. It does not have to be fancy – we can simply use masking tape and a marker, but the key is to label each box with the name of the room, and add a box number (Example, Kitchen Box #3). I always put the labels in the same place on boxes – top right corner, on the side of the box (not the top) so they can be easily seen. Track this list on your spreadsheet. This will save you time when you are ready to unpack.
5. Create a DUST-FREE ZONE
If you are going to be staying in your home during renovations, create areas (or at least one anyway!) that will be free from dust. It will become your haven to help you get away from it all. Put old towels at the base the door and purchase clear storage bins for items that need to be fully protected. Arrange for a cleaning company to come in once all the work has been done so that you can move back into your fresh space!
6. Dream of the Day – Plan for “DONE”
Sometimes we need to use our imagination to keep our motivation levels high. Create a wish list of items that you’ll use to decorate your space after the project has been completed. Create bookmarks of websites that you love (for easy access) or pictures of what you’d like to have. If you are like me, and you need a dose creativity, work with a home designer who can help to bring your ideas into reality
No matter if it is one room or one house, if you take some time to plan the project from the start, you will have success and and save money along the way. Remember to be flexible, have patience and take time for yourself during the journey.
Local professional organizer Jodi Virgil of Organized Solutions Bermuda says, “When people are organized, they feel more in control of their lives and have an increased sense of overall well-being, which leads to lower stress levels. We can design customised solutions for our clients to help plan for the projects that will lots of happiness!”
Contact Jodi on 441-704-3725 or visit www.organizedsolutionsbermuda.com