At NJW, we get a lot of questions about when the best time of year is for a home remodeling project. One common question is, “Should I remodel my home in the winter?” While we feel that any time of year is the right time for home improvements, here are some pros and cons about wintertime home renovation projects.

Can I start a home construction project in the winter?

Yes. You can start a construction project in the winter under the right circumstances. There are even several advantages to starting a project during the cold season.

Advantages of winter home renovations:

  • Lower Prices: Since subcontractors still need to work during the winter, you may be able to get a better price during the winter.
  • Workable Weather: Subcontractors can continue to work while it snows verses rain.
  • Faster Permits: The government agencies will be less busy so you can get your permits quicker.
  • More Availability: If the subcontractors are less busy they are more likely to meet your schedule.

Winter is considered “off-season” of a typical construction schedule. This means subcontractors and suppliers may be less busy throughout your project. For example: lining up a foundation company or finding a framing crew is easier during the winter than in the spring or early summer.

Disadvantages of winter home renovations:

  • Shorter Days: The days are shorter (and colder) so the subcontractors work shorter days.
  • Weather Delays: With the chance of inclement weather, there may be delays.
  • Unforeseen Costs: If there’s a lot of snow, and you want the subcontractors to work, you may have to pay to have your site plowed and shoveled.
  • Less Accessibility: If it’s icy or your snowed in, large trucks may not be able to access your property.
  • Need Heat: You may need to use temporary heat to heat your home, the workers themselves, or some of the ground so they can dig.

Suggestions for starting a project in the winter months

  1. Sun or no sun: If your site gets a lot of sun you will have an easier time of starting a project in the winter. If, however, your property gets very little sun or no sun at all, it is probably best not to start a project after the ground has thawed.
  2. Schedule right: Make sure you have your excavation and foundation companies scheduled very close together so you have less chance of frost getting into the soil under the foundation.
  3. Be Prepared: Find out where you can buy or rent some concrete thermal blankets before you need them, and have someone set up to plow your site every time it snows more than 3-4 inches.

Construction obstacles when building in winter

Once the foundation and concrete floors are in, the major obstacles of starting in the winter are over. Sometimes the concrete floors can be poured after the house has been framed and temporary heat can be added to the area.

Winter is great for planning home construction

Winter is the perfect time of year to plan for your home renovation project. Then, you can hit the ground running; when spring begins.

We hope this article helps you decide whether to start your home construction project in the winter, or wait until spring. There are pros and cons no matter which option you choose. Contact NJW Construction if you have any questions about a home remodeling project. We’re here to help!