Whether you’re putting on a new deck or building a whole new home, remodeling can be a very exciting and joyous time. You’re changing your home into a space that you’ve always dreamed about. Home remodels, however, aren’t always as simple as they seem. As you may have experienced, the stress of constant chaos in your home can really cause a strain on your personal relationship. So how do you prevent the stress of a home remodel from affecting your relationship? Can your love really survive such a daunting task?
Follow our guide below to ensure that your home and your relationship stay in excellent shape during this hectic time:
Money can be the source of a lot of conflict between couples, particularly during a house remodel. The first task you should complete before doing anything else is deciding on the budget for your project. Set this number in stone after careful discussion with your partner and make sure you stick to it. That way, everyone is clear about the financial plan from the beginning.
The 51-49 Split
Someone needs to be in charge. It can be extremely difficult, if not impossible to split all the work perfectly 50-50. So instead, the one of you who would prefer to have a bit more control and deciding power should have 51% of the power, while the other partner has 49%. The one with 51% is able to veto decisions made by the other after discussion and has the ultimate say in the remodel. However, this does not mean they can wield power like a dictator. Make sure the basis of every decision is a respectful discussion with your partner.
Set a timeline for this project. Map it out on a calendar that the whole family has access to, and make sure that you all stick to it. If a project drags on, this can be a major source of stress for the family. And if this is out of your hands, remember that patience is key.
If you are remodeling enough of your home that you need somewhere else to stay, make sure you plan ahead for this. Perhaps you can book a hotel for a few nights if your bedroom or bathrooms are undergoing renovation. If you need a space to stay long-term, try to arrange to stay with some close friends or neighbors. Or, make sure that there is always a room available for the family to stay during the remodeling.
Plan for the Kids
As much as you may love them, your children can definitely add to the stress of a home project, because they’ll want to run around and play and this can get in the way of the work. Consider arranging some sleepovers or play dates for your younger children during the period of remodeling. Even getting them out of the house for a few hours a week can relieve a lot of the pressure that you feel to take care of them and also manage the project.
Make sure you set aside time just for the two of you. With the stress of a home remodel, it can feel like you are being pulled in all different directions. Before the project even gets started, map out set dates on the calendar where you and your partner will get out of the house and have a date night. Arrange a babysitter for the kids ahead of time, and do your best not to cancel these dates. Remembering to spend time together will be crucial to getting through this stressful period stronger.
If you sense that the stress of the remodel is weighing on your partner, try making some small gestures like bringing home flowers or food from their favorite restaurant for dinner. Remember that you two are a team, and you should treat each other with a lot of care and attention during this time.
Of course, along with spending quality stress-free time together, you both need to have some time alone to relax and unwind. Try to get out of the house or spend some time alone for an hour or two a day just to clear your head.
So you planned, you scheduled, and your home improvement project still took an unexpected turn. Veering from the schedule is normal, and in fact it is quite likely to happen. Real life rarely goes according to plan. Your schedule should serve as an outline for the path you want your project to take, but if things change don’t freak out. Try to embrace the change and just work around it. Being a little more flexible will help keep your stress levels down, which can only help your relationship and your home in the long run.
The Back-Up Plan
If all else fails, do not be afraid to see a couples’ counselor. It’s their job to listen to your issues and help you work through them diplomatically and respectfully. A home remodel is stressful for anyone; you don’t need to let your relationship suffer for the sake of your home.
Remember that your relationship with your family is more important than any home project. If you have to extend the project to make it easier on everyone, do it. And don’t be afraid to ask for help. Visit some of our older posts on everything from home decor to different types of windows for other ways that AROCON can make your home project a little easier.