10 Renovation Tips For First-Time Home Buyers

Popular HGTV shows like Fixer Upper and Property Brothers have proven time and time again that home buyers can purchase an older home that needs a lot of work and renovate it exactly to their liking. Although without the help of Chip and Joanna Gaines or Jonathan and Drew Scott, renovating can be a daunting task – especially for first-time homeowners who don’t know what to expect. This is where our professionals at Center Island Contracting come in! Whether you are looking for dormers and renovations, kitchen or bathroom remodeling, or looking for a new construction, our skilled staff of qualified and reliable professionals are the best in New York. Below are 10 tips for first-time home buyers when it comes to renovating:

Invest in Quality Materials

Keep in mind that old saying “you get what you pay for.” It might seem tempting to cut corners with cheaper materials but it’s more likely you will have to replace them sooner, not to mention they won’t look as good. If you’re going to renovate, do it right. If you can’t afford the quality materials, then it’s best to delay the project until you can.

Plan Ahead

This might seem like an obvious tip, but thoroughly planning ahead in all aspects of your home renovation can save you headaches at a later time.

Concentrate on Lighting

The lighting in your home can really transform your space, so don’t ignore light fixtures and overall lighting when doing your renovation. Lighting sets the stage for ambiance and can make or break the color scheme you choose.

Too Trendy

This is a common mistake and we admit, it can be appealing. However, going trendy can lead to being outdated in a short amount of time when you consider the big picture. It’s best to keep your décor trendy instead of materials, which will only be trendy short term.

Don’t ignore electrical systems

Do a walk through with an electrician before you start the remodel so you can plan out where new outlets are going. It’s also best to make sure your electrical system is up to date before you start with a renovation.

Prepare for Mayhem

This is one of the most important tips: go into your renovation project knowing there will be some endlessly frustrating days. It’s just par for the course. If Possible, Move Out Temporarily If there’s room in your budget for it or if a family member or friend is willing to take you in, move out during the majority of the renovation. Especially if you have children, it will make life easier to stay away from a construction zone.


Choose a budget and try to stick with it. In your budget, account for some wiggle room because there will inevitably be a need for a contingency fund. By planning ahead, you should eliminate the need to go over budget too much.

Proper Permits

Always make sure you get the correct permits during a home renovation because it could come back to bite you down the line.

Place Orders Ahead of Time

Certain materials can take months to arrive, so plan accordingly. By waiting three months for floor tiles, you can set your renovation project back even longer than it needs to be.