Remodeling your home? Here’s what to expect

Congratulations! You’ve decided to do that “big” (or small) remodel that you have been dreaming of forever. Whether it is all new flooring in the home, a new kitchen, a new bathroom, or finally finishing your basement, you should plan to deal with some of the following issues.


No matter how well you and your contractor plan for construction dust and dirt, there will be dust… a lot of it! Inside every cabinet and closet, on top of every window sill and ceiling fan blade, on your countertops, in your bathroom cabinets, everywhere.

If would like to limit the “dust invasion,” you must discuss this with your contractor and agree on the “dust proofing” or “dust containment” procedure that the contractor is willing to commit to and that which you are willing to pay for. You’ll also need to make several decisions – about covering and taping down your furniture, about plastic-sheeting off each room where the remodeling will be taking place, about utilizing a professional cleaning service, etc.

You can go as far as HEPA-vacuuming the entire home to include the upholstery, window treatments, heating and air conditioning vents and more. It’s all up to you. But remember, there is a cost associated to all of it, and in the end, it is you who incurs this cost, not your contractor. Most contractor/remodelers include a “broom-clean” clause in their contracts that is exactly that, “broom-clean.”


These valuables are yours. You are responsible to take down, wrap up and store your priceless family heirlooms, pictures, artwork and knickknacks. If you don’t want them broken, missing or dusty, pack them up and put them away in a safe place while your remodeling is underway. Even with the most careful of movers, accidents happen!


Remove and store such items as lamps, mirrors, small tables and anything that may get in the way of the workers in your home. If you are having new flooring put in, it’s a good idea to take everything up off your closet floors, at least up to 4 feet high, to provide working space for your contractor.

If you have lots and lots of furniture, please keep in mind that it will need to be moved around during the remodel, perhaps more than once, and there will likely be a cost for doing so. If possible, move some or most of it into a “temporary home” while remodeling, such as a portable storage pod or an outside covered patio. Removing, wrapping or storing as much of your furniture before the remodeling will also help to keep it clean until the project is complete.

Temporary lodging if necessary

Where you live and how comfortable you are during the remodel is the homeowner’s responsibility, not the contractor’s. If you are doing a fairly large remodel or are replacing an entire kitchen along with cabinets, flooring and countertops, understand the process before you begin to help to eliminate surprises.

Prepare for the inconvenience of not having easy access to your refrigerator, your stove and your kitchen sink. There may be a few days during the remodel that you will need to eat out, stay off the floors and have no access whatsoever to the areas under remodel. This is typical and normal. You and your family may want to consider staying in a hotel for a few days during the worst of it, or renting accommodations elsewhere for the duration of the project.

While it is exciting to plan and shop for a remodeling project for your family home, adding a week or two to your expected move-in date or completion date is realistic. That being said, you can also expect delays in materials, delays due weather and many other “surprises.”

For information about MAPEI products and services and how they can help, please visit us at

About the Author

Holden Wheeler

Holden serves as a Regional Technical Services Representative for the South Central United States. As a local representative for MAPEI’s U.S. Technical Services Department, Holden acts as a technical liaison between distributors, end users, product management, R&D and sales representatives. In addition to being a third-generation flooring installer, Holden draws from years of experience in building-material distribution, installation management and firsthand MAPEI product knowledge with a specialty in tile and stone products, as well as MAPEI’s UltraCare® line of care and maintenance products.

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