A Homeowner’s Guide to the Exterior Renovation Process

It pays to know about the exterior renovation process when planning for significant home repairs and updates.

Exterior renovation projects often start with necessities.

This includes things such as replacing a worn-out, leaky roof or severely damaged siding. Many homeowners use this opportunity to update other items. We often hear from clients who want higher energy efficiency, more natural light, curb appeal for resale, enjoyable outdoor space, and other modifications for comfort, functionality, and style.

Exterior Renovation Process

Be prepared for your exterior renovation process

Many homeowners feel overwhelmed just thinking about the exterior renovation process. It’s easier when you break this multi-faceted project into steps. This article will help you start on the path to a home that expresses your vision and improves your family’s life.

What are your #1 priorities?    

If you’ve been thinking about home renovation for some time, you may already know what some of your “must-haves.” As a provider of roofing, siding, and solar, our clients usually require one or more of the following items:

  • Roof repair or replacement
  • Siding
  • Solar panels
  • Soffits and Fascia
  • Gutters and drainage systems 

These items all protect the home, inside and out, against leaks, storm damage, insects, and other sources of damage.

Multiple projects make sense when considering the exterior renovation process

It’s often ideal to have multiple exterior renovation projects at once for overall cost-efficiency, budgeting, less disruption over time, and creating a cohesive vision of the home.

Most clients will use a general contractor to coordinate all the elements of your project. Golden Group has experience as a general contractor, enabling us to manage and coordinate your complete exterior renovation. We can help walk you through the process of installing exterior doors, garage doors, windows, and other functional elements or choosing more stylistic items, such as trim, shutters, landscaping, fencing, porch construction, and more.

Start your exterior renovation project with a clear vision

Whether you have a professional designer or are more of a DIY homeowner, you may be limited in the scope of your project based on budget, timing, and other factors. Start out by establishing your goals and priorities.

First, identify the must-have projects that will have the greatest impact on the home, such as replacing broken windows, repairing a worn-out roof, or any structural issues. Just below the must-have items come necessary items that may not have such a critical or immediate impact—such as minor storm damage, faded siding, and general wear-and-tear. Next come the items you’d like to have if your budget allows, such as shutters, trim work, skylights, and fences.

The priorities above go hand-in-hand with lifestyle considerations and other goals, such as marketability and ROI, eco-friendliness, modernizing, and family changes.

Set a realistic budget that covers the entire exterior renovation process

Some households have a budget of $10,000, while others have $50,000. Whether your overall budget is large or small, the itemized breakdown should be realistic and specific.

Beyond materials and labor, your contractor should fully itemize all these items in advance: 

  • Contractor fees and deposits
  • transportation costs
  • Demolition
  • Equipment or rentals
  • Waste or removal
  • Permits
  • Inspections
  • Interest or other financing
  • Costs associated with unforeseen project needs
  • Padding for project overruns that may increase costs

Hire a reputable, high-quality contractor  

Your general contractor holds the project together, so finding an honest, licensed, high-quality contractor is one of the most critical tasks for any exterior renovation. Ask your neighbors for recommendations, read Angie and Yelp reviews, and go on their website to see what type of projects they’ve done in the past.

In your initial phone conversations, be sure to ask basic questions, including their licensing, permits in your area, customer references, warranties, use of sub-contractors, anticipated start date and timeline, and steps in their process. You can ask your top two or three choices to present line-item bids and compare them based on a balance of cost and quality.

You and your contractor are ready to start the exterior renovation process

All homes and project elements vary, so there is no single correct process. There are, however, some guidelines to follow when discussing the renovation plan.

1. On-site visit: 

Your contractor will visit your property to discuss your project, define the scope, and be able to prepare a realistic quote. This part of the process includes:

  • Inspecting your roof, siding, and other exterior elements and determining how to best prepare your home for renovation, such as replacing rotten wood, insects, and foundation problems.
  • Taking measurements, identifying technical requirements, and determining any special circumstances; a contractor may also use a drone for the most precise measurements and for 3D renderings
  • Sharing your requirements and priorities for design, style, architectural elements, and functionality and treatment options for roofing, siding, windows trim, doors, decks, patios, and other elements
  • Discussing your budget

2. Project plan and timeline

After the site visit, your contractor should submit a project plan and rendering, detailed estimates, a breakdown of necessary materials, and a timeline—possibly using a phased approach for larger exterior renovation projects. Before finalizing plans, the contractor may do sample tests on design choices to ensure you get the look you want

3. Logistical preparations

Once materials and design decisions are in place, your contractor will begin preparations, getting building permits, ordering materials, arranging for dumpsters and equipment, scheduling subcontractors, and planning for any necessary demolition. Ask your contractor for a list of items to do before construction so you’re ready to go when installation day arrives. As a final step in preparation, your contractor will moisture wrap the property to protect your home against the weather while renovations are underway. 

 4. Roof

Your largest and most urgent repairs should come first to protect your home against further damage and will alter the requirements of smaller projects. Chief among these is the roof, especially if it is nearing the end of its useful life or has significant damage.

5. Soffits and fascia

The soffit is the exposed surface beneath the hanging section of a roof eave. The fascia is the vertical finishing edge where the gutter attaches to the roof. Each is essential to protecting the roofing and attic from the elements. Your contractor will install the fascia before the soffits, and complete the soffit before installing the final course of the siding.   

6. Opting for Solar Panels 

If you are an environmentally conscious homeowner who needs a roof replacement, we recommend an integrated process for installing your new roof and solar panels. Golden Group Roofing & Solar uses an all-in-one process and a single team of experts that deliver the most leak-proof installation.

7. Gutters/Drainage System 

It often makes sense to replace gutters near the end of the project since your contractor will need to remove them for roofing and siding projects.  

8. Windows and Entry Doors

Windows and doors are typically replaced before the siding, allowing them to be precisely set and framed without affecting the new siding.

9. Siding

Contractors will usually install siding after replacing the windows. This relatively time-consuming part of the process requires contractors to remove the old siding, prep the home, add insulation, install new siding, and complete any trim work. Repainting is, of course, a much shorter process. While siding appears as #8 on this list, the order of installing the roof and siding depends on the home and the installation process.

10. Additional Upgrades

Items that don’t affect the home’s structure, such as landscaping and lighting, will be attended to after completing the more major elements. 

11. Clean-up

Your contractor should ensure that subcontractors leave the property neat and tidy, with all debris removed. 

12. Final walk-through

While your contractor should keep you apprised of progress throughout the exterior renovation process, the final walk-through is the final presentation of your home vision come to life.

You deserve a smooth exterior renovation process

Knowing what to expect—and having a trusted partner throughout the process—makes all the difference to your peace of mind. The expert designers, installers, and project managers at award-winning Golden Group Roofing & Solar are happy to help you plan your external renovation project. They are dedicated to providing exceptional service and guiding you through every step of the process. We pride ourselves on transparency and keeping the customer informed every step of the way. 

For a seamless exterior renovation process, call on our experienced and friendly crew that will deliver the highest quality workmanship for your fully integrated exterior renovation project. Call Golden Group at 508-873-1884 or book your home exterior maintenance (solar, roofing, and siding) inspection online