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Upgrading - Renovating your Living Space
Part II – Spring Spruce Up

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In the March edition of Christian Life in London, we launched our four part series of Upgrading - Renovating your Living Space with Part 1 – Trends (Missed it? Click HERE)

In this, Part II, we will provide you with what we hope will be useful information in your decisions on the spring spruce up projects.

In our discussion with suppliers and contractors, it is too common for customers to underestimate the costs to do the renovations correctly AND the time required to get the job done. The average cost for a serious home renovation project will be in the neighbourhood of $15,000, so setting the budget is first and foremost.

Know whom you are hiring by checking references. There are unethical contractors that will supply references rolling the dice that the client won’t check them. They think and unfortunately they know that by giving references, the client thinks they are golden. However, if the references are actually contacted, often the references are bogus.

So, for sure, get references and Google the business and people in it. Ask for references, at least three of them. Take the time to call or email them and ask what the contractor did best and if they could change one thing with the experience what would it have been.

Google them. Google is a great tool for wanna-be private investigators. Google owners’ names, check their social media accounts, BBB account, comments in social media pictures, etc. It will give you a good idea of who you might be working with behind that smile and handshake.

Finding the right skilled contractors that offer fair prices can be tough, but once you find one you will be so happy!



You don’t want to experience this...
"We wanted to completely gut the kitchen, but they crew we hired could only work in the evenings. They worked for two weeks, and then one day, they just didn't show up. We were left with a complete mess and had to hire a new crew to finish the job. We had paid as they went, but next time we'll get the agreement in writing. Lesson learned. "


It is also important to keep the whole family in the loop!
We moved the pantry during our kitchen renovation. The process was relatively smooth for us, but not for our two year old, who asked, "Where did that man put the door to the cookies?"


Another suggestions - Make sure the contractors are fully insured and licensed. It may not seem like a huge deal, but if something goes wrong with the installation or someone or something gets hurt during the process, then it turns into an ENOURMOUS deal.

Whether you are investing in renovations, updates or upgrades to add value or to add comfort to your home there is a wide choice of honest and ethical companies that will deliver high quality products and workmanship.

Clutter is a problem and you don’t have to be a hoarder to be overwhelmed by the clutter you and your family has created. Clutter clearing can actually be one of the most gratifying projects of the Spring Spruce Up.

Some use a rule of thumb “If it has not been used in the last 12 months, get rid of it”. Too drastic for most but it may cause you to look around and see how many things are taking up space that have not been used in years.

Another rule being adopted by some, “If a new item comes into the house, one item must go”.

If you are ready to part with items but they’re too good to just throw away, there are lots of options:
  • Hold a yard sale – it’s fun and it will generate some pocket money – or more.
  • Sell it on Kijiji. It’s easy and it’s FREE.
  • Donate it to charity. Your church may have a way of collecting and distributing to those in need or you can contact one of these charities:
    • St Vincent de Paul 519-438-7071
    • Bibles for Missions London: 519-473-8025, St Thomas 519-633-7300
    • Mission Services 51—434-1956
    • Salvation Army 519-451-0178
    • Habitat for Humanity Restore 519-659-1949 Ext 225
    • Ark Aid Street Mission 519-667-0322
    • Sanctuary London (Clothing and footwear only) 519-902-9774

These charities will take clothing, furniture, working appliances and electronics, toys, books, cutlery, dishes, etc. Some, like St Vincent de Paul, Habitat for Humanity and Bibles for Missions can arrange for no charge pick up of your donations.

In this, Part II of the series, we have again consulted the best of the best to provide information and suggestions on the topic of the month. This month’s segment takes a look at spring spruce ups, and the following companies have provided information, opinions and suggestions.

To read what they have to say just click on the link (below) of the company you want to read about.