Renovating a home is a large undertaking and one that is typically full of surprises. Though many property managers anticipate the unexpected, it’s impossible to fully prepare for unforeseen expenses and issues that may crop up during any given project. That said, some issues are more common than others. Use this brief guide from The Property Management Coach to brush up on what to expect during a home remodel, as well as top considerations.

Top Concerns

Whether you’ve renovated a home before or this is your first go-around, there are some issues you will run into for which you can never fully prepare. From a homeowner’s perspective, here are top complaints:

Cash Concerns

According to a recent report cited by Habitat for Humanity of San Antonio, one in three home renovation projects go over budget. You can avoid sticker shock by planning every detail down to the T and setting aside 5% to 10% of your budget for contingencies.

Change Orders

CoConstruct explains that a change order is an adjustment to an original contract that contractors use to protect themselves against changed and increasing costs. However, they can significantly increase homeowners’ expenses, which is something to keep in mind should you decide to change direction at any point during your renovation.


Environmental upheaval is also par for the course during home remodels. For instance, dust is sure to settle across all corners of your home beginning during demolition. A contractor should take steps to protect the home and belongings:

  • Clear out rooms adjacent to the renovation area
  • Cover everything you can’t move with polythene plastic
  • Invest in duct and HVAC covers
  • Seal off the doorways
  • Vacuum at the end of each day


Delays can occur at any point during a home renovation. Unfortunately, most delays are unavoidable, as they involve permitting requirements, long lead times and discoveries during construction. However, some you can control, such as those that stem from inexperienced contractors or change orders.

Top Considerations

You can better anticipate what to expect during a home remodel if you approach it with a solid plan. To leave little room for error, plan with the following considerations in mind.

Don’t Overlook the Everyday Elements

What is behind the walls is just as important as what lies outside of them. The condition and layout of your ductwork, wiring and pipes can significantly influence the cost and complexity of your project.

Though not flashy elements, you should also consider flooring, roofing and energy efficiency when redesigning your home. These considerations are crucial for your everyday comfort, and for the day you decide to sell, a well-designed home with these elements could see an increase in value.

Create Rooms Needed Now and for the Future

To avoid future expenses, create room for now and long into the future. For instance, when designing a home office, consider future adult children and guests. To create a multi-purpose room, invest in a storage ottoman or cabinets to store bedding, a sleeper sofa and a full-length mirror. None of these items take up too much space but can double a room’s function.

Purchase a Home Warranty

Finally, homeowners should be advised to protect their investment with a home warranty – but, is it worth it? Most people would say yes. A robust home warranty can protect everything from appliances to HVAC systems to plumbing in the event of unexpected failures. When shopping for a home warranty, homeowners should read the fine print of each contract and customer reviews to find one that fits your needs and budget.

From increased costs to dust, and from designing a home office to shopping for warranties, there are several considerations to make before beginning a home renovation. Because you as a property manager cannot fully prepare for all of them, though, the best thing you can do is anticipate the unexpected.

The Property Management Coach shares, serves, and supports Property Management industry experts and residential landlords to help them create the business and lives that THEY want. Contact us today to learn more! (800) 475-3084 

Contributing Author – Ted James can be reached at