6 Home Renovation Mistakes Every Homeowner Should Avoid

March 30, 2023

Renovating the place you call home can be an exciting project. You can replace your fixtures with modern styles, change the floor plan to suit your needs better, paint the walls with trendy colors, and make other improvements to customize the space to meet your needs and lifestyle. Plus, with easy access to home improvement materials and supplies, it’s easier than ever to transform your house into your dream home. 

The research from Harvard University clearly shows the trend: Americans are investing heavily in home improvements. In 2021 alone, homeowners spent $420 billion on home repair and improvements. The market rose more than 3% from the previous year, and it’s no surprise why. Besides, Texas is among the top ten states leading the surge in the home improvement market. The residents of this Lone Star State are renovating, remodeling, and sprucing up their homes for more comfort, convenience, and safety. 

However, despite the hype and enthusiasm, it’s crucial to understand the potential pitfalls of any home renovation project. To help you out, we’ve outlined the top mistakes you should avoid when renovating your home. 

  • Not Planning for Storage 

Starting a home renovation without the necessary storage space is a recipe for disaster. Not only does it mean that you’ll have clutter all over the place, but you could also damage or even lose valuable items during the renovation process.

One way to plan for storage is to look for storage solutions during the planning phase of your home renovation. Searching for climate-controlled storage facilities is a must, especially if you live in humid subtropical climates like Houston, Texas. Houston residents worrying about weather wear and tear to their furniture and other belongings can opt for storage units to ensure they’re safe from damage. 

The advanced storage units Houston TX has to offer can help you avoid weather damage to your belongings. These self-storage units come in various sizes, featuring climate-controlled storage spaces and advanced security features to keep your valuables safe. 

  • Not Having a Clear Budget 

Since renovations can quickly spiral out of control – and cost significantly more than you have estimated – it’s vital to establish a clear budget before you begin.

Factor in all costs – materials, supplies, labor, and design services – and any potential repairs or upgrades. If you’re hiring a professional for home renovation, research the market prices in your area and get estimates from different contractors and designers to help you set a realistic budget before committing to the project. 

Likewise, put aside some money from your budget – ideally 10-15% for contingencies. This buffer can help cover unexpected repair costs or last-minute upgrades. 

  • Skimping On Permits

Obtaining permits is essential to any remodeling project, and skipping out on them can have serious legal repercussions. You may face hefty fines, receive stop-work orders, or even require to undo your renovations without ever receiving compensation. Additionally, your insurance company may not cover accidents or damage without proper permits. 

Houston, TX, homeowners are required to obtain permits for constructing additions or alterations to existing homes and for any project that involves water supply, drainage, plumbing, gas lines, and electrical wiring. 

So, research the permits you need and build extra time into your renovation timeline to ensure you obtain them before starting your project. You can also work with a contractor who can advise you on the regulations and help you secure the necessary permits. They can also help you ensure your renovation project is up to code and meets other requirements. 

  • Sacrificing Quality

It’s tempting to cut corners when renovating your home to save money. But sacrificing quality will not only cost you more in the long run, but it can also affect your home’s safety and function. 

For instance, poorly installed wiring and plumbing can create several safety risks, from fire to water damage. Using low-quality building materials can also lead to a decrease in the value of your home and may require more frequent repairs. Likewise, installing subpar appliances can be a waste of money as they will likely need to be replaced sooner than expected. 

Investing in quality materials and installations will ensure your home is safe, efficient, and valuable for years.

Bonus Tip: Explore simple renovations you can do for less than $1,000 so you can get quality materials and installations without breaking the bank.

  • Impulse Buying

Impulse buying is a common trap for many homeowners tackling a renovation project. It’s easy to get carried away with seeing all the items you think you need or want in the store and making purchases without considering whether it’s truly necessary. It could be a beautiful sofa, an extra set of cabinets for the kitchen, or any other item that catches your eye. 

However, these impulse purchases can quickly add up and blow your budget. To avoid this, create a detailed list of items you must purchase before entering the home improvement store. It can help you avoid buying unnecessary items and help you stick to your budget. 

If you like something that isn’t on the list, wait until you get home to think about it and decide if it’s necessary. Or weigh the item’s value, cost, and functionality to determine if it’s worth buying. 

  • Adding Too Much Customization

While you might want to add special touches to your home, avoid overdoing it. Excessive customizations can be expensive and might not appeal to potential buyers if you decide to sell your home in the future. 

Sticking with timeless paint colors and simple designs is best to avoid making your home look too overwhelming. If you love bright colors, try using them as an accent in your decor instead of covering the walls. Or, if you like unique fixtures, use them sparingly to create an interesting focal point. This way, you can still show off your creativity without making costly and potentially unsellable changes to your home. 

Additionally, remember to keep the size of a room in mind when choosing custom furniture or fixtures, as oversized items can make a room feel cramped or too crowded.


Home improvement projects are an incredible way to increase the value of your home, make it more comfortable and enjoyable to live in, and give you a sense of accomplishment. However, it’s essential to be careful and avoid common mistakes that can derail your project. Plan for storage needs in advance to store items safely, set a realistic budget, avoid impulse buying, and hire a contractor you trust to help you navigate the regulations and permit process. Avoid cutting corners to save money and invest in quality materials and installations to ensure your project is completed to the highest standards. 

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Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

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