Your home truly is your castle. It is your little slice of the world that it is yours to create and mold into a space that can support a comfortable atmosphere that meets your needs and accurately represents who you are.

With the New Year still young and yours to take, what better way to generate a brand new start for you and your family than by beginning a home renovation project?

Despite how exciting the idea of a home renovation can be, getting started can be quite daunting. There is a lot to take into consideration, including the design, the plans and the budget.

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Try not to feel overwhelmed; with the proper preparation and planning, you will not only be able to successfully implement your dreams but see it to fruition as well.

Here we have compiled some of our most helpful tips in guiding you through a smooth home renovation.

Step 1: Make a Plan

The first phase of any home renovation, no matter how big or small, is creating a plan.

Sit down and create a list of the changes you would like to make to your home. Have an open dialogue with other members of your family about your ideas and theirs. Decide what it is you really want to achieve through this renovation; what additions and improvements do you want to make and why? What alterations are a priority and what can wait if the budget doesn’t suffice?

Step 2: Set a Budget

Determine how much you can financially invest in your renovation. What is the total amount that you can spend? Once you set a total budget, start breaking down the budget. How much do you want going towards the different pieces of the project? Dedicate more money to the areas that were specified as priorities from your list in step one.

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Step 3: Find a Contractor

Once you have decided on a definite plan, the next step is finding a contractor to work with. Discuss your plans with the contractor, invite him or her to tour your home, and discuss the changes that you want to achieve. Consult your contractor as to whether or not they believe any modifications need to be made to your plan and/or budget.

Remember to have an open mind about the contractor’s opinions. If he/she thinks that a certain aspect can’t be achieved, or that modifying a piece of the plan will generate better results, take care to listen and remember that his or her experience far exceeds yours; they are the professional.

Step 4: Set a Timeline

After discussing your ideas with the contractor and establishing a definite plan, set up a timeline.

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How long do you want to be under renovation? What is a realistic time frame for completion? Of course, nothing can be set in stone and unforeseen circumstances may occur, but having a timeline in mind can help in making the renovation process easier to cope with by having attainable goals set out in front of you.

Step 5: Be Prepared

A home renovation can quite literally uproot your entire life. Make sure you are ready for and aware of the challenges that may present themselves throughout the process. Make plans for you and your family to most comfortably move through all of the steps of this large task while successfully accomplishing all of the visions you have in mind.

For example, you may want to make arrangements to stay with a family friend for a time, or dedicate a part of your home, that isn’t going to be impacted, as your living space.

Step 6: Finishing Touches

Once the walls are up and the fixtures are installed, you will be rounding home plate! Now it’s time to think about the finishing touches; the paint colors, the tile, the decorative accents.

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Those finishing touches will pull together the entire look of the renovation and allow you to place that ‘Done’ stamp on the project. This last step is usually the most enjoyable as well, as this is where you get to express your personal style and create a space that reflects the environment you want to foster.

Renovating your home is an exciting, albeit, and overwhelming experience. Following these steps will ensure a successful start – and finish – to your renovation.