Christine Ditzler

Christine is the Business Development Manager for Restoration 1. Christine is also a McHenry Chamber board member and Chamber ambassador.

How To Deal With the Stress of Home Repair and Renovations

After a natural disaster wreaked havoc on your home, you’re now left to deal with its impact. It could be faulty wiring or water residue. Whatever the issue is, it can cause more problems such as fire or mold buildup if it remains unattended.

This means you have to get your property checked, cleaned, repaired, and restored ASAP. These next steps are crucial, but they can also be overwhelming. To add to your stress, you also have to talk to and negotiate with your insurance provider.

All of the above can factor into you feeling an inordinate amount of home renovation anxiety. This is common, and you’re not alone if you feel unsettled by the inconveniences that sometimes come with the property restoration process. Fortunately, there are ways to help you manage how you’re feeling and better adapt to the changing environment in your home:

  • Do your research
  • Create a to-do list
  • Set a budget
  • Keep a flexible timeline
  • Find a temporary home
  • Get help in dealing with your insurer

Do Your Research

Whether the damage is big or small, you should not hesitate to call the experts. The right home repair and restoration contractor can make your life easier. They can inspect your property to see if there’s anything you’ve missed while assessing the scope of the damage at the same time.

So spend a few moments searching for the best service provider near you. Don’t just rely on what you see in ads. Look for a contractor with sufficient experience in your areas of concern. Also, get an idea of the company’s work quality by reading some of the reviews left by past clients.

Remember: You have to be thorough with this step to avoid exacerbating your woes later.

Create a To-Do List

This list is for personal use only and is not meant to get in the way of your restoration company when construction begins. So, what needs to be included in your to-dos?

  • Initial needs you have noted after a storm or tornado left damage to your property
  • All the questions you want to ask your contractor
  • Preparations you should make because it might take time to get everything back to normal, especially if you’re dealing with fire damage (lightning storms can be unforgiving)

During restoration, you might experience another episode of home renovation anxiety. Refer to this list to clear your head and keep your sanity.

Set a Budget

While some aspects of home repair or renovation after a disaster will be covered by your insurance, you should also set aside money for contingency. Allot 5 to 10% additional budget for unexpected events in the renovation process. For instance, your contractor may uncover structural damage that needs to be addressed immediately on top of the issues brought about by extreme weather conditions.

Meanwhile, if you’re planning to upgrade, check your bank account status to see if you can afford it. The fact is, some areas of your home are more expensive to renovate than others. It would be wise to decide on what you need from the get-go to avoid splurging on unnecessary things. This way you can avoid feeling overly stressed about going over budget.

Keep a Flexible Timeline

Understand how construction works. Sometimes, your contractor will have to pause work because of booking matters. This can happen if yours is a long-term project and your property restoration company is in demand, so it’s often catering to multiple clients for a particular time period. Other times, you just have to exercise some patience because your service provider is suddenly forced to address additional problems while fixing the main issue. In any case, manage your expectations by keeping your timeline flexible.

In addition, you can reduce your stress by communicating your concerns clearly with your contractor. For example, seek clarification if you feel like the project is dragging out toward the end. The home repair and restoration experts can explain the next steps to ensure everything is back to normal.

Find a Temporary Home

In some cases, flooding, wind, or another natural cause may have ruined your house, making parts or all of it unlivable. If your circumstances allow it, you may then seek shelter in a temporary home, like a hotel or rental home.

Staying away from your property, where you see daily reminders of the damage, can be good for your mental health. You can plan better while you’re not there. If you work from home, you can also dodge various sources of distraction, such as loud noises from workers and their equipment and tools. On the other hand, you provide your renovation crew with the space they need to finish the job as your presence can sometimes limit their access to the house.

A temporary home may not be as good as your permanent one. But it can offer solace while you wait for things to return to what they used to be – or even better.

Close up of unrecognizable insurance agent showing his customer where to sign the contract.

Get Help in Dealing With Your Insurer

Last but not least, the right home renovation company can assist you with the insurance claiming process. Your contractor can handle everything for you with your best interest in mind, from assessing the damage and providing estimates to communicating with the insurer to initiating and completing home repair and restoration.

With that said, expect the resolution of your claim to be a lengthy procedure, taking about six weeks or longer. But if you research your contractor thoroughly, keep your timeline flexible, and manage everything away from your damaged property, you can deal with home renovation anxiety better.

Moving Forward – With Less Stress

You may be experiencing bouts of home renovation anxiety, especially if your renovations have come as a result of a disaster. Remember that you don’t have to go through this alone. Your family is there for help and support. And so is your home restoration company, especially one that treats you like a family. For this particular reason, it’s best to call in a company that is considerate and committed to getting your home back to shape, so you and your family can enjoy the haven provided by your newly restored space.

Whether it’s a storm or fire, a disaster can leave significant damage to your home and also disrupts your daily routine. The entire process of home renovation can be a stressful experience for your family, including your kids and pets.

Your distress can then be exacerbated by the rebuilding process. Home renovation anxiety is common and you’re not alone if you feel unsettled by the inconveniences that sometimes come with home renovations. Fortunately, there are ways to help you manage how you’re feeling and better adapt to the changing environment in your home.

Common Reasons for Home Renovation Anxiety

The reasons for having home repair-related stress may vary from person to person. But there certainly are common ones shared by homeowners who experienced renovation for the first time. Let’s discuss some of them:

  1. Home Surprises

    If you happen to come home from work to a ripped-out ceiling due to a termite invasion, for example, then this can be a shocking and unpleasant sight. Many times underlying issues in the home tend to surface when undergoing renovation. The key is to see this as an opportunity to address these issues so that they don’t cause further damage down the line.

  2. Going Over Budget

    One in three renovation projects can go over budget. This is a reality every homeowner should prepare for, not just because of potential surprises. It’s important to acknowledge that some areas of the house can be more expensive to fix or remodel than others. Topping the list is the kitchen, followed by the master bathroom. Another reason for spending over the budget is that many homeowners think there’s more they want to be done while the contractor is at their place.

  3. Getting Distracted by Tools and Equipment

    When your house is under repair, you’ll have plenty of distractions to deal with. Of course, you won’t always have full control over the comings and goings of your contractor. But this is why hiring a reputable renovation company is vital, because you’d still want workers to be professional and respect your space.

    Experts seal off the affected parts of your house to speed the drying process or contain microbial growth, which can be a hassle for the homeowner, often requiring the use of loud tools such as air movers and restricting the homeowner from certain spaces in their home. Some pieces of equipment can also make your whole house hot. These combined factors can make for a distracting and noisy environment.

  4. Making Many Quick Decisions

    The chances are you’ll have to have many conversations with your contractor before making permanent decisions. And too often, these conversations involve you making important decisions on a range of things, from your budget to room designs to built-in appliances. It is then easy to get overwhelmed when making fast decisions within a limited time period.

How To Adapt to Living in a House That’s Under Repair

While home renovation anxiety is a reality for many, you don’t have to be bogged down by it throughout its duration. Here are some ways to stay sane while your house is still under reconstruction:

  1. Make Budget Allowances

    If you’re due for a home repair or renovation after a disaster, you can check with your adjuster to determine what is included in your coverage. You can also request an estimate of the renovation cost from your contractor and see if you can make adjustments.

    Be transparent about your budget to avoid miscommunication and unwelcome surprises. If you’re shouldering some of the cost, you can also set a contingency plan: something like having 5 to 10% additional budget for unexpected events in the renovation process.

  2. Choose Your Battles

    Making rapid-fire decisions while having a disrupted routine can get the best out of anyone. Not having enough time to consider your options while the checks keep flying out of the checkbook can lead to some heated moments.

    So, when you’re in the thick of things, it’s better to meet your contractor in the middle when it comes to renovation decisions. You can also divide the task between you and your partner. For instance, one can decide what to do with your damaged walls and ceilings, while the other can pick out the replacement parts.

  3. Live In Another Place During Renovation

    If your circumstances allow it, you can live somewhere else while your home is under repair. This way, you won’t have to deal with loud noises and achieve some semblance of normalcy as you go about your day.

    This is particularly important for people who work from home. Tools banging and workers talking can disrupt you from finishing your tasks. If your kids are home, they can also be bothered by seeing strangers make changes to the house. And let’s not forget about pets who can also feel the stress of having to adjust to all these distractions at once.

  4. Choose A Trusted Home Renovation Company

    The internet gives you access to a wealth of information about home renovation. This is great because you can do your research before hiring a home renovation company. Plus, you also get to browse videos and articles about the construction process.

    However, once you’ve enlisted the help of a contractor, you want to be sure that you have an industry specialist taking care of your repair and renovation. Communicating with them when you feel like the project is dragging out toward the end can shed light on what steps still need to be done. Sometimes, achieving peace of mind is just a matter of seeking clarification from your contractor.

You may be experiencing bouts of home renovation anxiety, especially if your renovations have come as a result of a disaster. Remember that you don’t have to go through this alone. Your family is there for help and support. And so is your home restoration company, especially one that treats you like a family. For this particular reason, it’s best to call in a company that is considerate and committed to getting your home back to shape, so you and your family can enjoy the haven provided by your newly restored space.

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