Understanding Remodeling Anxiety

Home renovation projects can be incredibly exciting, but can also come with a fair amount of stress and anxiety. From the initial planning stages to the final walk-through, there is a multitude of things people can understandably worry over, from the cost and timeline of the project to the fear of making the wrong decisions. If you feel this way, you are not alone. It is important to understand that this type of anxiety is normal and there are several ways to overcome it or avoid it.

What Causes Remodeling Anxiety

There are several reasons why remodeling can cause stress and anxiety. To start with, the process itself can be overwhelming, especially if you're not familiar with construction. Most homeowners will only undertake a large project once or twice in their lifetime. The feeling of not being in control can be stressful, so it is important to understand the steps involved and what to expect during each phase to manage your expectations.

While not understanding what to expect can cause stress, another cause of anxiety is the disruption of your home life and daily routine. As humans, we love our routines.  Your home is your sanctuary and the thought of having it turned upside down can be unsettling. This can lead to feelings of insecurity and fear of the unknown. Not to mention the noise, dust, and mess that comes with remodeling.  It can make you feel like you're living in chaos. Planning ahead, and preparing temporary spaces to resume your usual breakfast, grooming, and dinner routines helps to maintain some normalcy during a remodel and alleviates stress.

Fear of making the wrong decision(s) is another common source of stress and anxiety during remodeling. With so many options available, it can quickly get overwhelming and become difficult to know what is right for your home and lifestyle. You may worry about choosing the wrong materials, design, or making a mistake that you will regret later. This fear can be especially acute if you're not confident in your design and decorating skills. Working with a professional to understand your options and make informed decisions is a great way to feel confident in your choices.

Finally, remodeling can be a major financial commitment. The fear of overspending or going over budget can be a source of stress and anxiety. You may worry about not having enough money to complete the project, or about having to sacrifice other things in order to pay for the remodel.  The struggle is real. Working with a designer to understand how you can achieve both your design and functionality goals within your budget will ensure you make the right blend of product and style choices without overspending.

Remodeling is a Manageable Process

The remodeling process itself can cause disruption to your routine, fear of the unknown, fear of making a wrong decision, and fear of overspending - which are all common and realistic sources of anxiety during a remodel. Our experts at Reico Kitchen & Bath have a few strategies that help manage the process and help you feel in control, which as a result will increase your confidence and reduce uncertainty and stress. 

How to Reduce Remodeling Anxiety

While remodeling anxiety is normal, there are several strategies you can use to reduce and overcome it. Here are a few tips to help you manage your stress or anxiety and feel more in control:

1. Plan Ahead: One of the best ways to alleviate anxiety is to create an initial plan. While it will change, it helps most people lay out the steps ahead.  Those steps will be further clarified or new steps will be added by your design and construction experts.  Make sure you have a clear understanding of the steps and what to expect during each stage. This will help reduce uncertainty and allow you to feel more in control.  

For your own initial plan, start by setting a budget and adding details for the project. This should include everything from the materials you want to consider to the design and the approximate timeline for the entire project. You should also create a contingency plan (with a budget for) in case something changes during the project. This will help you feel more prepared and reduce the stress and anxiety that come with the unknown.

The selections process can be daunting for many homeowners. With countless options to choose from, it's easy to feel overwhelmed. Chantilly, VA Reico Designer Carolina Maholik always advises her clients: “fall in love with one item (tile, countertop, light fixture, cabinet, etc.) and build from there. If it ever starts to feel overwhelming or you are in the wrong direction, go back to that one item and rebuild from that piece as this helps to simplify and ensure you love the end result.”

2. Communicate with Your Team: Good communication is key to every successful remodeling project. Make sure you understand what everyone is doing, from designer to contractor. When you have concerns or don’t understand, you must ask questions and get clarification.

A Reico designer will help you make decisions and provide expert advice on materials, color schemes, and design elements as well as project timelines and what to expect. This will help you feel more confident in your choices and your plan.  It will also reduce stress and anxiety when making decisions.  

Before work begins, make sure you have a clear understanding of scheduling and what is to be done.  Work may not be done every day.  It is important to know that in advance to avoid stress or the frustration of wondering what is going on. Knowing the schedule and how to reach everyone if you have any questions or concerns will help you feel more in control and reduce the stress and anxiety that come with the unknown.

Reico Springfield, VA Designer Shanae Mobley advises: “flexibility is key during the remodeling process, as unexpected delays can happen. Homeowners should plan for their home life to be disrupted during the renovation. The first week of the project is usually the messiest, with dust and debris everywhere. With proper planning and realistic expectations, homeowners can successfully navigate their renovation project and create the home of their dreams. Remember to trust your instincts and finalize selections based on your original plan to avoid any remorse.”

3. Keep Things Organized: During a remodel, it can be easy for things to get out of hand. To minimize the stress and anxiety, make sure you keep things at least somewhat organized and tidy. This will help you feel more in control and reduce the chaos.

To keep things organized, create a system for storing your belongings during the remodel, and make sure everything is labeled and easily accessible. At Reico, we help by providing you with packing boxes for your project. Sounds simple, but what it does to reduce your stress and anxiety of packing up or finding things is significant.  That is why we are the experts! You should also set aside designated space for tools and materials to minimize the clutter and keep the work area tidy as well as a temporary kitchen area or alternative bathroom to keep as much of your routine intact as you would like. 

4. Take Time for Self-Care: Remodeling can be incredibly demanding, not only on your home and your time but on yourself as well. It is important to take time for yourself during the process. 

Take regular breaks from the project, even if it is just a short walk around the block. Make time for activities you enjoy, particularly ones that are outside the home.  Watch your diet as well!  A kitchen remodel in particular will change your eating and food preparation habits.  Prioritize your self-care by eating well and getting enough sleep. Consider reducing your caffeine or alcohol intake. All of these things can help you recharge, reduce stress, and maintain your mental and emotional well-being.


Remodeling anxiety is normal.  However, in most cases it can be overcome with a little planning and preparation. At Reico Kitchen & Bath, we have been in the business for over seventy years. In addition to our expertise in design and project management from start to finish, we also can share our experience in how to plan for a remodeling project and the anxiety that comes with each step.  We will be in this together to help you to reduce stress, feel more in control, and enjoy the process of creating your dream kitchen or bathroom. So, take a deep breath and get ready.  Give Reico Kitchen & Bath a call today to get started. 




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