Home remodeling projects are challenging enough as they are. Add kids to the equation, and it’s almost impossible.
No, it’s not going to be a walk in the park. Kids are more susceptible to accidents and illnesses. Factor in their natural curiosity and talent for getting underfoot in situations they shouldn’t even be in, and you’ve got a recipe for disaster.
But don’t worry; there are steps that you, as the parent and homeowner, can take to keep your home remodeling experience hassle-free.
Tip #1. Communicate with Your Home Remodeling Contractor
This is something so many homeowners forget to do; talk to their contractors.
Surely, you chose your contractor or remodeling company because you trusted them. A lot of companies have expansive portfolios, considerable experience, and competitive prices. But on top of these, the deciding factor for hiring a remodeling or design-build company is trust.
Do you trust these people with your home? Do you believe that they will deliver what they promise? Do you count on them charging you fairly?
If this is the case, then you should feel comfortable expressing your concerns. You’ve got kids and infants running around. They can’t stay in daycare the whole day, nor at a friend’s house every day of the week. What can they do or suggest, as professionals, to make the renovation process a little safer for your family and a little easier for you to manage?
Will they be willing to follow your baby’s naptime schedule when it comes to heavy construction and power tool usage? Can they tell you when they work on heavy-duty remodeling—the kind that involves knocking down walls or killing the electricity for a bit—so that you can prepare your family accordingly?
Little things like these will make a massive difference in the long run.
Tip #2. Tag Team It
If you’re living with a spouse, sibling, or any adult at home, work with them to get the kids out of the house or away from the remodel. Have your partner take the children out of the house while you stay home to work with the contractors. Then, on the next day, it’s your turn to keep them entertained while your partner oversees construction.
It may take some time getting used to it, as it also includes a lot of scheduling, but you’ll find that the remodeling process becomes much easier. It also gives you and your partner plenty of opportunities for breaks, which can greatly improve your mental health too.
Tip #3. Have a Designated Kid-Friendly Space
If you don’t have anyone you can tag team with or your schedules just won’t line up at all, create a designated kid-friendly space far away from the home remodeling and construction work. It can be as specific as a spare bedroom, a corner in the living room, or a fun little blanket fort in their playroom.
Rather than tell your kids “don’t go here,” “don’t touch that,” or “don’t walk there,” you can instead direct them to an area where you know they’ll be safe. Make it as child-friendly as possible by adding some toys, pillows, blankets, and a good supply of snacks and water.
Related Content: Family-Friendly Kitchen Renovation Ideas for 2019
Tip #4. Ration the Toys
The last thing you want to do is to leave toys lying around during the remodel. Toys have a “tripping hazard” written all over it—for both your family and the workers. But you also don’t want to pack up all of your kids’ toys. Otherwise, they won’t have much to keep them occupied.
Your best move would be to ration their toys. Pay attention to the toys or books your kids seem obsessed with. Remote-controlled cars and dolls with dresses and accessories are fine, but try to avoid toys that have too many little pieces (like Lego blocks or dollhouses). Keep the preferred toys out in the open—or in the designated kid-friendly area—and pack up the rest. Chances are, your kid won’t notice where his or her other toys have gone.
Tip #5. Take Care of Yourself
Rounding out this list is yet another thing homeowners—especially parents—forget to do; personal TLC.
If you want to stay on top of your home remodel project, including your work, and your kids—you’re going to need loads of energy.
This isn’t something you can cheat with coffee and energy drinks, either.
The more rested you are, the sharper your mind is. The sharper your mind is, the better your decision-making abilities. So get your standard eight hours of sleep, drink plenty of water, and do not skip your meals. Get regular exercise in between (even 30 minutes of walking can do wonders) and indulge in moments of inactivity.
You’ll be surprised how a good night’s sleep, three squares a day, and a bit of daily movement can calm you down—even in the face of something as stressful as a home remodel!
At the end of the day, home remodeling with kids and newborns is doable—difficult, but doable. Just keep your wits about you. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, and quit neglecting your own wellbeing. Health and safety should be everyone’s priority when it comes to home improvement projects, and that includes your own.