Stay in touch with the property market and what buyers want
Even if you don't plan to sell your house in the coming years, it pays to stay in touch with what other people want. Try attending open houses and ask agents what buyers look for. This may change your perspective - you can start with a change that will add the most value to your home.
Check that the house is sound
Before you do anything, you should check that the house is sound. You may want to get building professionals in to check the house and surrounding structure.
Your plan, is it really realistic
Make a budget and ask yourself if it is really realistic. Once you can answer yes, add a 20% contingency and make a firm resolution to stick to that limit.
Seek the names of good builders and trades people
If you know someone who has been through a renovation, catch up with them for coffee. Ask what worked well and what went wrong. Seek the names of good builders and tradespeople.
Get competitive quotes
Get competitive quotes - it works! Never just go with the first renovation quote you see.
Seek building approval
If you need building permits this can be a long process. Dealing with local government can take time so make sure your timelines align, allow for some delays and have a contingency plan.
If there are building/approval delays
Use delays well. Get ahead on jobs like selecting the fittings, so that you are really ready to move forward.