Q&A with Jean: When Should I Start Planning for My Renovation?

Sweeten’s Founder + CEO Answers Your Renovation Questions

Renovate to live, Sweeten to thrive!

Sweeten brings homeowners an exceptional renovation experience by personally matching trusted general contractors to your project, while offering expert guidance and support—at no cost to you.

Start your renovation

Welcome to #8 in our series, designed to bring clarity to some of the mysteries of renovating! Whether you’re a first-time homeowner or a serial renovator, each project brings with it a new set of circumstances and new questions, and Sweeten is here to be a source of knowledge and reassurance. 

QUESTION: When should I start planning for my renovation?

JEAN: A lot of homeowners come to us when they are in contract on a new property, but haven’t closed yet. This is a good time to start some preliminary planning, such as outlining the scope of the project—what you’re aiming to accomplish—and begin selecting materials. However, you really need to wait until you’ve closed on the property in order to pull permits, get board approval (if necessary), and have easy access to the space for walkthroughs and measuring—all the things that you’ll need to do to start your renovation.

You might also meet with a general contractor, but keep in mind that close dates sometimes don’t happen and there’s a chance the property sale may fall through. It’s a little harder to get general contractors to come on a site visit at this stage of purchase. It’s also a challenge to get access to the property. While in contract, we highly recommend starting to plan what you would want to renovate and the level of costs you want to spend on your materials, including your “must-haves” and “nice-to-haves.” We can’t emphasize enough how having a good handle on these aspects affect timing and delivery lead times, keeping your project on schedule.

If you have more questions on the topic, check out our blog post The Do’s and Don’ts of Closing and Renovating.

Jean signature

Looking for more advice from Jean? Be sure to check out the seventh installment in this series, Q&A with Jean: Do I Need Temporary Walls?

Sweeten handpicks the best general contractors to match each project’s location, budget, and scope, helping until project completion. Follow the blog for renovation ideas and inspiration and when you’re ready to renovate, start your renovation on Sweeten.

You may also like

Renovate with Sweeten!


We’ll match you with vetted general contractors and offer support until your project is done — at no cost to you!

Start your renovation

Customer review 5.0


“Sweeten was really helpful — we wouldn't have found our contractor without them, and the bid-leveling call was absolutely essential for us.”

— Dara R. from New York, NY

Read more reviews —>
Start your renovation

Subscribe to our
renovation newsletter