For many people, home is their personal sacred place where they can live, work, and relax in the private, comfortable environment they’ve created to satisfy their specific needs and desires. When undergoing a major renovation, however, a home can feel far from “homey”.
Dust, noise, the frequent presence of workers on the property, and other elements inherent to major home renovations can make your home uncomfortable and uninviting, causing your quality of life to suffer. Whether you feel overwhelmed during a major remodeling project or are even nervous about your health and safety during the process, there are a few ways you can deal with the disruption to your home and your life.
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Should I Stay or Should I Go?
The first question to ask yourself is whether you should even be living in your home during the home renovation.
Certain projects are a no-brainer. If you are undertaking a major roof remodeling project, asbestos or mold removal, or extensive floor work, health risks and inaccessibility are prominent issues that automatically eliminate your ability to stay in your house during the renovation. If a remodeling project is going to occupy more than half your house, you will face an enormous hassle trying to move and live among the disturbance. Another factor to consider is how long the bathroom remodel, kitchen renovation, addition or other major project will take.
In other cases, there are pros and cons to both remaining in your home for the duration of the project and leaving to stay with a friend or at a hotel.
The advantages of staying put include:
- Saving on the cost of acquiring alternative lodging as well as eating out at restaurants
- The ability to monitor the progress of the project
- Being in close proximity to handle any issues that arise
On the other hand, the advantages of temporarily moving out include:
- Avoiding the accumulation of construction dust, noise, and overall mess
- Potentially shortening the project’s timeline for completion
- Securing a comfortable place to carry out daily activities without interference or disruption
- Enjoying a short getaway to rejuvenate
Generally, it takes a significant amount of exposure to construction dust to increase your risk of developing dust-related diseases, such as lung cancer, silicosis, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). However, it can irritate existing conditions such as asthma or serious allergies, which is another factor to consider.
How to Live Comfortably at Home During a Remodel
If you decide to remain in your house during the remodel or renovation project, you should take steps to preserve your safety and comfort level. Here are a few tips and guidelines for families who are living at home during a major renovation.
- Seal off construction-free zones to try to contain dust to designated areas. Quality contractors may use HEPA Air Scrubbers that remove particles from the air to keep your living space breathable during a remodel.
- Turn off your HVAC system to prevent airflow from causing dust to fly throughout your home.
- Remove fragile or breakable items and furniture pieces that are in or near the construction zone.
- Move unnecessary items to storage to give you more room in your temporary living space.
- Wear shoes in your house to protect your feet from stray materials that could be on the floor.
- Keep your children and pets far away from the construction zone not just for their safety, but for everyone’s safety.
- Check the construction timeline to know when and where construction crews will be working and consult with them about any construction-free zones that are off limits to protect your privacy.
After the Renovation
Once your major home renovation project is finished, there is still a bit of work to be done to return your home to its previous state of livability. Post-construction, you will want to conduct a deep clean of the renovation site and surrounding areas, although the contractor should have removed all trash and equipment.
From vacuuming upholstery and sweeping and mopping floors to dusting and wiping down window interiors and changing air filters, the goal is to ensure that any construction remnants, debris and dust are removed from your living area.
Once the important clean-up project is done, you are at ease to enjoy the benefits of your recently renovated home while resuming your daily routine and getting life back to normal.
“How to Safely Live in Your House During A Major Renovation.” Written by Jacob Hurwith from ImproveNet.com for SafeWise. Accessed online at https://www.safewise.com/blog/how-to-safely-live-in-your-house-during-a-major-renovation/
“Construction Dust.” Electronic Library of Construction Occupational Safety & Health. Accessed online at http://elcosh.org/document/3689/d001228/construction-dust.html
“Live In or Move Out: The Remodeling Dilemma.” Bob Vila blog. Accessed online at https://www.bobvila.com/articles/416-live-in-or-move-out-the-remodeling-dilemma/
“5 tips for living in your home during a remodel.” Momaha blog. Accessed online at https://www.omaha.com/momaha/tips-for-living-in-your-home-during-a-remodel/article_0c8f0376-736d-11e5-a75b-0b281627c9ed.html