Dave And Jenny Marrs From Fixer To Fabulous On Mistakes Novice Restorers Make - Exclusive

You don't have to build a house from the ground up to have a customized space. Many homeowners are opting for renovations to create the home of their dreams. But as easy as a television show may make it look, Dave and Jenny Marrs from HGTV's "Fixer to Fabulous" know just how difficult renovations and restorations can be. Though they've been in the industry for decades and worked on a variety of projects, from their own family farmhouse to an upcoming mercantile, the renovating couple still runs into issues.

And though the Marrs' may be able to handle those problems because of their experience, novice restorers and renovators often make mistakes as they learn. "Always having the ability to commit is the biggest thing that makes a successful renovation," Jenny Marrs says in an exclusive interview with House Digest. 

"There's so many scenarios that have happened over the years, but always feeling like we can figure it out and come up with a new plan has been how we approach a project." Thanks to their experience, Dave and Jenny Marrs share what mistakes novice renovators and restorers can avoid.

Remember, plans can change

When you first set out to remodel or restore a home, you lay out all the projects you want to complete and create a timeline based on the scope of the work. But Dave and Jenny Marrs will be the first to tell you that no renovation ever runs 100% according to plant. "Always plan on it taking longer and costing more," Dave Marrs cautions. "When you get into these, you never know what you're going to get into." Renovations are notorious for having unforeseen issues and project delays that many restorers may not initially plan for.

"I've been doing this for 20 years," Dave Marrs continues. "We've gotten pretty good about [renovating] homes, but it never fails: There's always a surprise. I always tell people, 'If this restoration takes an extra month or an extra two months, this is something that you're trying to put together for your family for a lifetime, so take the time. If there's something that you really want that's going to take an extra month to get in, let it take an extra month. In the whole scheme of things, [to finish] this house how you want, you shouldn't really have that strict timeframe on it.'"

Know when to have professional help

It really takes a team to build a home. And if you're new to renovating and restoring, you're definitely going to want someone who has some experience to help guide you. "[H]ire an architect, someone that comes to the house ... that can look at it and go, 'Here's where you can open up walls. Here's where you can structurally do things,' because it's so much cheaper to do all of this on paper before you start tearing out walls," Dave Marrs advises. "So many people get excited about the remodel, start the demo process, and then realize, 'Shoot, we can't even take that wall out.' Then you're doing a lot of double work, versus spend[ing] the time upfront."

As a novice in restoration, it's also a good idea to take advantage of any tools that can make the job easier. Dave Marrs says, "There are programs now, like our architect['s], [where] you can literally put on a pair of goggles and three-dimensionally walk through the space that he's drawn for you on your house. That's a good way to realize if it's something you're going to want."

Watch the new season of "Fixer to Fabulous" at 9 p.m. ET/PT on HGTV and discovery+.