It’s that time of year again. The time when many of us jot down resolutions to kick bad habits and make positive changes in our lives. Lots of people say they don’t make resolutions but they like to set goals. Either way, this is a good time of year for a little introspection, reassessment and finding new perspectives. It is also a good time to set goals for home improvement projects and establish priorities and timelines.
Setting Realistic Home Improvement Goals
Setting goals for your home remodeling is a good plan but I do feel that it differs slightly from personal goals in a number of ways. Personal goals can improve your health, longevity, interpersonal relationships, career and other aspects of your life. I don’t think we can claim that kitchen remodeling is going to reduce your risk of heart disease or help you get a better job. It may, in some cases, improve relationships within the home, make you more comfortable or even improve safety.
When setting these types of goals, I highly recommend asking yourself the following questions and then deciding if the project is still one that you want to set as a goal for yourself.
• Do I NEED this home improvement?
• Will it improve my life? How so?
• Will it make my home safer or more secure? (For example, installing a barrier-free shower during your bathroom remodeling to accommodate a loved-one with mobility issues.)
• Will it create a healthier home? (Think mold remediation, removal of lead paint…)
• Will it make me (or the other members of my household) more comfortable or reduce our stress?
• Could it make us more productive or efficient? (This is an important one for those of us who work from home or who need good study spaces.)
• What is my real motivation behind this home improvement?
• What will the environmental impact of this project be?
Goal Setting 101
The SMART approach to goal setting is one that is often recommended and that I encourage you to look into when you are sitting down to set your goals. The acronym SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. I suggest establishing a goal for each main project and ensuring that it fits within the SMART model, the more precise and developed the goal, the more likely you are to achieve it. You may also want to set up yearly, quarterly and monthly goals to help keep yourself on track.
What are your home improvement goals for 2013? Tell us about them in the comments section below.