7 Common Causes of Renovation Delays & How to Avoid Them

7 Common Causes of Renovation Delays & How to Avoid Them

Even with the most careful planning and a perfectly scheduled timeline, delays in your home renovation are inevitable. Fortunately, there are things you can do to help keep your remodel project on track. 

The following are the most common causes of renovation delays and how to avoid them.

1. Pre-Existing Conditions

In any home renovation – especially those involving the removal of walls or flooring – there’s always a possibility of uncovering an unwelcome surprise. These unexpected issues include things like:

  • Water damage,
  • Asbestos,
  • Termites or other pests, and
  • Other dangers or damage.

To minimize the impact these surprises can have on your reno project, have an experienced contractor inspect your home prior to planning the renovation. They can recommend or arrange any necessary testing, anticipate potential issues, and prepare you for any necessary measures that must be taken.

While your renovation is underway, these unexpected issues must be addressed immediately to avoid lengthy delays in your project. Always have a contingency budget in place for unforeseen issues and be flexible in your planning.

2. DIY Errors

Most homeowners go through the “DIY vs. Hire a Professional” debate when it comes to remodeling. The internet abounds with videos and tutorials that give confidence to those brave enough to give it a go on their own. The likelihood of success is high with simple, small projects but more complex renovations require experts. 

Fixing mistakes made by DIYers can cause significant delays in a renovation project. Avoid this by hiring a professional from the start. Their experience will ensure your project happens according to plan, in the right order, and without needing to redo work in between.

3. Long Lead Times &  Back Orders

Sometimes the items you order for your renovation are out of stock or arrive damaged. Some might arrive on time but they’re the wrong one or you realize it’s not what you really want. Long lead times and backorders are common causes of renovation delays.

Order your materials as early as possible so waiting on products won’t hold up your remodel.

4. Contractor Scheduling

A home renovation project involves a lot of people that need to work together and be on the same schedule to keep things moving smoothly. If one piece of this complex puzzle is delayed, it will hold up the rest of the project. 

This type of delay can also be costly. For example, if the tiler you’ve hired to install your backsplash shows up on their scheduled day but the tiles have not yet arrived, you’ll be paying the tiler to stand around and wait. 

The easiest way to avoid this is to hire a contractor to manage your entire renovation project. They will put together a team of subcontractors they trust who will be available at the scheduled time. 

Some of those subcontractors may no longer be available if a delay occurs that changes their scheduled dates for your project. When this happens, there is the option to hire a different subcontractor who is available, but this is not ideal and is best avoided.

5. Obtaining Permits

You may require a building permit for your home renovation project. When you apply for a permit, the city will go over your plans to ensure everything complies with the local building code and other applicable laws. 

As with most cities, Calgary requires building permits for many home renovations. The application process can take several weeks up to a few months, depending on the size of your project. 

Review the information on the city website to make sure you have all the required plans and documents you need. Submit your application as early as possible to avoid delays. Alternatively, a home renovation contractor can handle the permits for you.

6. Inexperienced Contractors

An inexperienced contractor might cause delays for many reasons. Even with the best of intentions, their lack of experience can lead to work that doesn’t meet code which means it won’t pass inspection. In this case, your project would be delayed because work would have to be redone. 

Inexperience can also cause delays when those unexpected issues arise. An experienced professional will be more likely to know how to deal with those surprises in a timely way and will also be familiar with building codes. 

Hire a contractor you trust. If you don’t know anyone personally, read reviews online or ask your friends and family for referrals. 

7. Weather Conditions

Depending on the scope of your renovation, the weather can affect your project timeline. If your renovation involves exterior walls, doors, windows, painting, siding, roofing, or concrete, the weather is a significant factor in the completion of your project.  

If your remodel is entirely indoors, the weather might not impact things too much. However, a kitchen renovation can be easier in warm weather, for example, because you have the option to use your outdoor grill and eat on the patio. 

Unfortunately, we can’t control the weather, so this common cause in renovation delays is the most difficult to avoid. The best you can do is take the weather into consideration when choosing the best timing for your renovation project. Again, always have a contingency schedule to allow for these unavoidable delays.

A Home Renovation Without Delays

It’s impossible to guarantee a home renovation without any delays no matter how well you prepare. But there are many things you can do to avoid the most common causes of renovation delays. By taking these steps, you will minimize the bumps in the road. 

  1. Have an experienced contractor inspect your home before beginning your renovation.
  2. Hire a professional instead of trying to do it yourself.
  3. Order your materials as early as possible.
  4. Hire a professional to manage your renovation project.
  5. Apply for building permits as early as possible.
  6. Hire only experienced contractors you trust.
  7. Be mindful of the weather when choosing the timing of your renovation.

The key is to remain flexible and always have a contingency budget and schedule in place. 

Above all, clear, effective communication can make all the difference. Your contractor is on your team. Connect with them often to make sure you understand each other. 

Riverstone Kitchens & Renovations has over 30 years of renovation experience. We’ve mastered the art of transforming mediocre spaces into magnificent places. Our expertise allows us to keep the process simple and smooth. Let us handle your home renovation project!

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