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Home Remodel Fails (& How to Avoid Them)

Everyone makes mistakes. Failure is a natural part of life that can help build character, resiliency, and self-improvement. When mistakes happen during the process of remodeling a house, however, they help build – well, nothing. In fact, they do the opposite.

Instead, common renovation and remodel fails deter you from building toward the modernized, immaculate home you desire.

While there are several home improvement mistakes you can make during the construction process, don’t worry. A few of them are more common than others, and most of them are avoidable. Without further ado, here are a few ways your project can experience failure – and how to fend them off to obtain your dream house.

Related Reading: Bathroom Design Trends to Look for in 2020

1. Focusing on Outward Appearances

Everyone’s heard the phrase, “It’s what’s on the inside that counts.” That sentiment is equally applicable to construction projects. It’s easy to get excited about how fresh and fashionable your bathroom, kitchen or house in general will look when the dust settles. However, none of that matters if there is faulty wiring, defective plumbing, crumbling infrastructure, and other beneath-the-surface damage that will require attention in the near future. For example, even if your roof looks fine, there may be dangerous issues present that require further inspection. Using your renovation project as a chance to make necessary repairs is a good way to avoid this amateur home remodel fail.

2. Messing up the Measurements

Erroneous measurements tend to be one of the most common renovation mistakes. Incorrect measurements, even miniscule ones, can lead to numerous consequences. For some people, it can mean the washer and dryer unit or cupboards they subsequently purchase don’t fit properly. Others find themselves running short on materials. In this case, a couple extra minutes of paying attention to detail can pay off big down the road. To avoid this home renovation fail, measure spaces multiple times and ask someone else to double-check your numbers.

3. Getting too Trendy

Sure, renovations are about rejuvenating an area and bringing the aesthetic up to date. The problem, however, lies in picking short-lived designs that are quirky and fresh today but will be so last year by the time you try to resell the home. There are little ways to personalize a room or use it as a canvas for expressing some off-the-wall design that’s currently en vogue, but the substance of your kitchen or bathroom should feel contemporary, clean and universally appealing.

4. Going Flat When You Should Have Semi-glossed

When it comes to paint, people tend to get really excited about perusing all those marvelous little paint samples and comparing colors to decide whether Mauve, Lilac or Pale Violet is the best fit for their DIY paint project. However, there are different types of paint available for the various types of surfaces within a home. Flat, semi-gloss, and gloss all have different characteristics that make them more suitable for some areas over others. For instance, flat paint shows flaws easily and is difficult to clean, so using it for bathroom or kitchen walls that are particularly susceptible to getting dirty is hardly a good decision.

5. Buying Materials Before You Have a Design

When you find items like flooring, sinks, lighting fixtures, or appliances on sale, it can be tempting to jump at the bit and make a premature purchase. The problem: that expensive item may or may not work within your finished design or budget. Then you’re left with a giant chandelier or oversized oven and nowhere to put it. Wait until you’ve made measurements and priced out your project before you spend money (and make sure you compare the materials’ costs first). The same goes for things like couches, rugs, and tables. Once the construction portion of a renovation process is finished and you can get an accurate sense of how the newly remodeled room looks and feels, then spring for that new couch.

6. Biting off More Than You Can Chew

In general, you should focus on renovating one room or area with your house at a time. Trying to make home improvements in multiple areas concurrently not only disrupts your life more extensively but can also put a strain on your budget and be overwhelming. Focus on addressing the most important rooms or spaces first, and then move on to the next home renovation investment project as time and money allow.

7. You Can’t Always DIY

The idea of “biting off more than you can chew” also pertains to attempting DIY home renovations that should be left to professionals. There’s nothing wrong with taking initiative to add a new coat of paint or fix faulty plumbing, but major remodeling can be accomplished in an easier and even more cost-effective way by partnering with a general contractor. At Bromwell Construction, we’ve tackled a wide range of renovations and repairs over the years and have the knowledge and experience to get your project done right the first time – successfully avoiding these home improvement fails.

Learn more about what your home remodeling project might cost:

Cost of a Kitchen Remodel in Delaware
Cost of a Bathroom Remodel in Delaware
Basement Remodeling Cost Guide


“7 Renovation Fails and How to Avoid the Same Mistakes.” Blog post published on Accessed online at

“25 of the Biggest Design Mistakes New Homeowners Make.” Architectural Digest. Accessed online at