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With New Zealand’s house prices soaring, it’s likely that your property’s value has increased since purchase. If so, why not take advantage of the increased equity in your home to finance renovations?

Top three renovation pitfalls and how to avoid them
by: Hedgie Gundry

If you’re considering embarking on a major makeover project this year, such as a second-story addition or house extension, here are three common renovation mistakes and how to avoid them.


Not asking for professional help

  • If you want your home-improvement project to be successful, not engaging the services of a professional may not be the best solution.

    So how do you avoid this mistake? Do your research and hire a designer experienced in renovations, not just new builds. They will know how to make your project work. You can hire an architect, a building designer or at least a draftsman to draw up your plans ready for your development application. And if you’re leaning towards contacting an architect, please note that - while they’re usually not ‘cheap’, they can also be a good investment: architecturally-designed homes tend to sell and retain their value quite well over time.


Going over budget and over capitalising

  • When renovating, you also have to remember that there’s the cost of pulling something down as well as building something new. Plus, if you’re renovating an old property, you need to be prepared for unforeseen surprises and issues.

    So how do you avoid this mistake? Once again, a good building designer or builder should be able to advise you before you start renovating as to how much of a contingency fund you might need. And in addition to going over budget, it’s important not to over-capitalise without having done the right research.

    For example, there are rooms that add value to your home (e.g. an additional bedroom), while others may just add costs without adding benefits.


Renovating spaces room by room rather than looking at ‘whole picture’

  • Tackling one room at a time is another common mistake. While budget constraints may only allow you to renovate one room such as the bathroom or kitchen, looking at the home as a whole is always a good idea.

    So how do you avoid this mistake? When planning your renovations, keep in mind the overall look and feel that you’re hoping to achieve. Try to view the home as a whole, considering the flow and proportions of the rooms, and making sure that any addition is matched seamlessly into the roof line of your existing home. The exterior design is as important as the interior one.

  • Use a calculator to get an estimate of how much you can borrow.
    Try one here

  • See if you qualify. To get a more accurate idea of how much you can borrow with RESIMAC Direct,
    click here

  • Call our Lending Specialists and they can do the calculation for you over the phone plus answer any questions you have at the time. Talk to us on 0800 466 656