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I'm Renovating a Home. Can I Still Live There?


During many renovations and additions, we at Hopkins & Porter are asked a very serious question about the feasibility of living in the home during the renovation. On some projects, the answer can be expensive in terms of money, inconvenience and safety. Do you mind “Camping in your own house” while we do the work? Having to deal with your electrical, plumbing and/or HVAC being disabled or even torn out during a phase of construction? Do you mind the noise, the dust, the vibration or maybe the smells of a construction site? Is it safe for you to have access to certain parts of the home, not being disturbed when you must walk through areas being worked in?

Renovations and additions fulfill dreams, desires, wants and needs of owners. Some will put up with the inconvenience, while others will rent elsewhere to be far more comfortable. A piece of the equation is how much time and money does it save to stay and deal with the daily routine of a construction site? Remaining in your home will certainly add time and expense as we need to maintain a safe and secure area you can move through, which could include temporary walls in either drywall or plastic, doors, floor protections and possibly special lighting. Tools and materials need to be out of your way and sometimes there is hardly enough room to work, much less move the owners around in.


Renovating a Home in Northwest D.C. and Living There

A couple chose to live on the second floor of their two-story home in Northwest DC, while we completely gutted the basement and added a full bath and family room. We also redesigned the HVAC duct system and upgraded the electric and plumbing.

The entire kitchen and rear summer porch were also renovated into a four-season room with a new washer-dryer and pantry. We can’t forget to mention that the first-floor powder room was renovated along with extensive electrical upgrades added to the first floor. During this phase, they did need to leave for a short period of time, while the new plumbing lines were being run and during the spraying of the foam insulation.

After the basement was 95% finished the couple then moved into the basement for us to finish the first-floor kitchen, porch and powder room. We then moved upstairs to renovate the full bath and reconfigure closets in the master bedroom to give them almost twice the closet space.

Did this couple feel the inconvenience of living almost four months in a construction zone was worth it? They did but, they were far more tolerant than the majority!

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