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Renovations you should not DIY

Written by Cameron Holm on June 23rd, 2020.      0 comments



If you’re thinking about house extensions or home renovations, recladding is one of your most important considerations. Recladding involves fixing or improving the exterior ‘shell’ of your home, and if done professionally it can raise the value of your house significantly.


Certain kinds of recladding can be expensive, which may tempt you into attempting a DIY job. But it’s a deceptively complex process. Firstly, there’s a huge range of materials and technologies available - you could spend hours upon hours researching and still get nowhere. Secondly, there are so many factors to consider when choosing these materials.


For example, you’ll need to consider the level of insulation (or R-value) each system provides. Good quality recladding will save you money on power, by reducing your heating needs in the winter and lowering your air conditioning use in the summer. It’s also been proven that poor insulation can have negative effects on the health of inhabitants.


Waterproofing your home is another critical consideration. Everything gets worn down a little over time, even weatherboards. If water does penetrate the exterior, what materials underneath will break down and how will this impact upon the structural integrity of your building? There are many different materials which can be used for waterproof recladding, including fibre-cement, timber, vinyl (PVC) and metal. Dry cavities between the outer wall and interior lining can help water to drain away and air to circulate.


All of these options will depend on your site, the structural foundations of your building, weather conditions and budget. With the complexity involved in recladding decisions it’s definitely something that should be left to the professionals. At Create Renovations, recladding is one of our specialties, so chat to our experts if you want practical advice.


Roof repairs

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Repairing a roof yourself is a bad idea for one glaring reason - they’re easy to fall off. This might be an obvious warning, but it’s something lots of people choose to ignore. Fixing broken or missing shingles isn’t the most complicated task, but getting up there and back down with all your tools has the potential to cause serious injury. It’s also a tiring job, and when you’re tired it’s more likely you’ll make a mistake or lose your footing.


Not only is fixing your own roof dangerous, it’s also inadvisable because it’s such an important component of your home. Getting it right takes experience. The last thing you want is to accidentally do a shoddy DIY job and end up with leaking and expensive water damage - so please leave it to the professionals.

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Knocking walls down

This is something many people think they can do themselves prior to renovations. It seems like a straight-forward task - grab a hammer and enjoy smashing away your unwanted wall. The appeal of this has been popularised by shows like Mitre 10 Dream Home and The Block NZ, which feature contestants attempting this (and other parts of the construction process) themselves.


However, it’s worth remembering that these contestants are under the guidance and supervision of professionals. Attempting wall removal at home on your own is a different story. An intimate knowledge of your building’s structural foundations is required. If your wall is load-bearing and you decide to knock it down you could be in serious trouble. Likewise, if it turns out there’s electrical wiring, gas pipes or plumbing behind it, you could be putting your home and yourself at serious risk.


Don’t get excited and charge in with your wrecking tools - just like recladding and roof repairs, wall removal should be left to the professionals.


Here at Create Renovations, we've got years of experience renovating homes (including recladding, roof repairs and refurbishments) so we're happy to provide advice. If you're looking for an experienced Auckland builder or North Shore builder, don’t hesitate to get in touch. We pride ourselves on achieving great results. We'll be back with more advice about home renovations soon, so keep an eye on this blog!


Should I sell or renovate my home ?

Written by Cameron Holm on June 23rd, 2020.      1 comments

Of course, the answer depends on each person’s circumstances, so I can’t offer a one-size-fits-all response. But there are certain questions which may guide you through the decision making process. With these in mind, you’ll be able to draw up a list of basic pros and cons about whether to sell or renovate, before you seek expert advice. Read on!

How do you feel about your location?

 This is something that won’t change when you renovate, so think long and hard about your location. Is it convenient for your family in terms of school and work commutes? Does it meet your public transport needs? Don’t just think about the present, consider your future plans and what your family will be doing in 5 or even 10 years. It might be a good idea to speak to your local council, and find out if there are any major changes planned for the area in the future.

And convenience aside, do you like the neighbourhood? Is it safe? Do you like the community, the amenities, the local schools, the parks or the area in general? If you love it, this could be a good reason for renovating rather than selling. You might find that the price of buying a house in another good neighbourhood significantly exceeds your budget, as location is such a huge factor on the market.


Beautiful houseWhat's your best choice financially?


This is the most complex question you need to ask yourself, and it involves a number of considerations.


Moving house can involve several costs - refinancing fees, legal fees, your real estate agent’s commission and advertising fees, physical moving expenses, and of course the actual deposit on your new property. If you’re upgrading it could be an expensive endeavour all up. However, you also stand to make a profit if the market’s good and you’re moving somewhere cheaper. So you’ll need to calculate all of these sums and weigh up what you expect to make or lose.

Calculating the cost of renovating is more straight-forward, but you need to remember that renovations sometimes ‘blow-out’ in terms of both time and finances. They may take longer and cost more than you originally plan. It’s worth leaving a buffer for unexpected costs when you plan your budget. It’s also important to hire professionals who are dedicated to working within your budget and delivering results on time - at Create Renovations we pride ourselves on both.

Does your home have sentimental value?


If you’ve lived in your house for a long time it could have a great deal of emotional significance for you. This is not a factor to be dismissed or taken lightly. Can you fathom the thought of some other family living in your house? Keep in mind there’s always the possibility your home will face the wrecking ball once in someone else’s ownership, so you need to prepare yourself for the worst before you let go.


More importantly still, do you want your children to grow up in the same place you did? Many people opt for renovating because they want to keep their home for future generations. So if you want to make your home part of your ongoing legacy, this could be a powerful reason to stay and renovate instead of selling.


Does your home have good bones?


Not every house is a great candidate for full renovations. If the foundations are weak or your house has significant defects, you might want to consider selling instead. This is an evaluation best left to the professionals, so talk to us if you have any concerns about your foundations and your suitability as a candidate for home renovations.

 Family renovating

Do you have the patience for renovations?


Depending on the scale of your home renovations, you may find yourself living in a bit of a construction zone. Some people find this hard, especially if they have children. On the other hand, some careful planning and scheduling with your contractors can make this process less painful. Some families even enjoy the renovation process. If you love making decisions and unleashing your creativity, you could be in for a lot of fun.


Do you want a truly customised home?


Any home you simply purchase on the market has not been built with you and your family in mind. Many people choose to renovate because they want a house that truly fulfills their individual needs. When you renovate, you have the power to customise every aspect of your home, with your own future in mind. From spaces and skylights right down to decor and doorknobs, the possibilities and creative decisions are endless. The recent rise in trends like customised kitchen storage have proven that more and more people want unique homes that reflect their own personality and lifestyle. If this sounds like you, renovating is probably your best option.


IMG 1095-412-346Will your renovation plans be approved by the local council laws?


A final (and practical) consideration which is often overlooked. If you’re planning home renovations, recladding, refurbishments or house extensions you may require building consent. Applications can take some time so factor this into your preparation process.

We have plenty of experience in this area and can help you submit your plans to the council. Chat to us if you have any concerns.

With all of these questions in mind, hopefully you'll get a better idea of whether you want to sell or renovate. Of course, if you want some expert advice from Create Renovations we're just a phone call away. We're renovation experts and our qualified Auckland Builders and North Shore builders have a wealth of local knowledge and experience to draw on. We're always happy to chat so get in touch today!


Renovating in Auckland ?

Written by Create Renovations on June 23rd, 2020.      1 comments



Bathroom Renovation Trends

Written by on June 3rd, 2020.      0 comments

Bigger, Bolder, Better

Bathrooms…when it comes to design, there’s few rooms of the house that get so much attention. Dark and bold, ornate and elegant, sparkling hotel-like glitz, floral femininity - there are so many different bathroom looks that seem to be constantly spinning on the fashion wheel. In short, bathroom renovations are never dull, and if you want yours to be up-to-date its worth doing a little research. Luckily we’ve got a few hot tips! These trends were hugely popular with our customers in 2014, and look set to continue blazing into the new year. So read on for some bathroom renovations inspiration!


IMG 1083-842-422-277Curbless Showers


One of the biggest and most exciting trends in bathroom renovations this year has been the shift towards curbless showers (or walk-in showers). Traditional showers are built with a step of about 4-6 inches at the entrance and sealed glass doors all around. But now designers are ditching the curb completely, and opting for shower floors that are level with the rest of the bathroom. These curbless showers (or walk-in showers) have a seamless and flowing modern look, and create the illusion of bigger space. A wide, monsoon like showerhead will enhance this sense of luxury even further.


Curbless showers do require careful planning, however, and they won’t work in every bathroom. For one thing, curbless showers without walls need to occupy a larger space, as this helps keep splashes within the shower area. If your bathroom is small you may want to consider an angular floor instead - a gentle slope down to the curbless shower on all sides can help drainage. If you’re really worried about flooding, floating vanities and cabinets provide an extra level of security and keep your possessions safe. With careful planning and construction a curbless shower can be a gorgeous addition to your modern bathroom.


Floating Vanities


The look for bathrooms this year has been all about cleanliness and simplicity. Floating vanities are one way of achieving this, as they take up less room and show off your tiling. Eliminating vanity legs also creates more space and makes cleaning the floor easier. If you’re concerned about storage, you can still have cabinets combined with your vanity - just make the whole thing elevated.


Black is Back


When it comes to colour, simple monochrome themes have been all the rage for bathrooms this year - and this trend looks set to continue. Dark colours are simple, elegant, and easy to keep clean. When blacks and greys are used for tiling or large surfaces, they provide a great contrasting background to your glistening modern fittings and appliances. There are a few things to keep in mind though, as you don’t want the bathroom to become too cave-like. Plan your lighting carefully, and always use high quality materials and fixtures to keep the overall look classy. You’ll need to make careful choices about where you use sleek, polished or matte surfaces, as dark polished areas can pick up handprints and marks easily. And finally, if you have a small monochrome bathroom remember to enhance the illusion of space by minimising clutter and using mirrors strategically.

Here at Create Renovations, we've got years of experience renovating bathrooms (as well as new builds, recladding and refurbishments) so we're happy to provide advice about what will best suit your needs. We'll guide you through the whole process, and help with initial conceptual plans as well as full project management and installation. So if you're looking for an Auckland builder or in particular, a North Shore builder, get in touch. We pride ourselves on creating some of the best bathrooms in Auckland. We'll be back with more bathroom trends in a few weeks, so keep an eye on this blog!

What to Ask your Builder

Written by Cameron Holm on March 10th, 2020.      0 comments

If you do not engage a good local Auckland/North Shore building company it can turn your a dream home experience into a bottomless money pit. But if you’ve never dealt with a builder before how do you know where to start? Get the job done right the first time and figure out whether the builder is a cowboy by asking these crucial questions.