Undertaking a home remodel is stressful at the very best of times. But throw being a mom into the mix and you have a recipe for potential disaster. Dust, mess, noise, disruption, delays, problems and worries about the budget are pretty standard, and parents will be taking on a lot of extra stress themselves. For the kids, it may initially be exciting, but it’s a big disruption to their routine, and as work drags on they may find it hard to cope. It is possible to smooth the process over – if you prepare as much as you can in advance.
Schedule Work For Summer
Take the seasons into account when scheduling in your job with contractors. Major home remodels are easier to take if you can escape outdoors, enjoy cookouts and outside eating while you don’t have a kitchen and kids are on their summer break so they’re already out of routine, and you aren’t trying to get them ready for school in a building site. Plus, if you’re working with a roofing contractor and your roof is missing, it has to be done during the summer months when you won’t be dealing with the freezing cold.
Futureproof Your Design
Most families decide to tackle a remodel to make their home more suitable for the kids – creating open plan space, enlarging the family room or adding bedrooms. But when it comes to choosing a design that suits, remember that children grow! Think about not just now, but how you might want to use the space in the future as well. Designing anything that is only relevant or useful while kids are really small is generally an expensive mistake.
Involve The Kids In Design Decisions
Remember that it’s your children’s home as much as it is yours. While you don’t have to go with their every suggestion – unless you especially want a Frozen theme kitchen or space rockets splashed across the walls – you should ask their opinion on things. Kids want to add a little of their own personality, especially if your project involves redoing their bedroom.
To help the process, narrow down their options to two or three that you’d be okay with, and let them pick from there. If there are favorite characters they want to include pick inexpensive options like a bedding set or a lampshade, or add a couple of framed prints to the wall rather than going for a whole room full of something they’re passionate about now but will quickly lose interest in.
Make It Fun For Them
Living through a home renovation can be hugely stressful and will test your parenting skills. Kids can pick up on the stress of it, so make it easier on them by reading kids books that feature construction, talking then through what is going to happen and showing them the designs so they don’t get freaked out by change, and talking about safety as well.
For younger kids, getting them a toy toolkit and letting them ‘help’ with something helps to normalize the construction work through play. And just remind them – and yourself – that however difficult it is to live through, you will have a beautiful new home at the end of the process.