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If remodeling is your dream, here’s how you can save on costs
When you have a major remodeling job on the cards, you would be aiming to touch down below the national average expenditure of $60,000, but there are many options and scenarios that could destroy that budget and rearrange your finances. Though seven out of ten homeowners are planning remodeling ventures, the majority would prefer to target a budget under $10,000. Here are some realistic tips that can help you stay within the budget that doesn’t break your financial limitations.
Rethink costs and reconsider your return on investment
The 2015 remodeling budget could be realistically targeted at $45,000 but even that significant investment ensures a return not more than 60 percent of your investment, especially if you are aiming for a home sale. So it is up to you to figure it out whether the expenses are worth the risk if a home sale is definitely on the cards. Even if you still decide to press on, here are some more tips to stay within the budget.
Reduce the cost of building materials
The main mantra of the canny home owner would be to reuse and recycle materials to reduce costs. There are quite a few specialized services like the Nongovernmental organization, “Habitat for humanity” that encourage environmental protection through reuse and recycling of materials. Not just building materials, you get bargain discounts on appliances and many accessories and fittings around the home. The options are varied and you could surprise yourself by zeroing in on prefabricated doors and windows, acrylic skylights and home insulation packages. Another method would be access online sites such as Craigslist, Freecycle and eBay, in addition to the local flea markets or have a look at government operated building material auctions for building wares.
You can also innovate using reusable materials. Timber for example which is much in demand for the polished wood look is also expensive but can be neatly substituted with pared down scaffolding planks that can be refitted all over the home at a third of the cost of timber. Every construction activity generates spares, and contractors are always willing to dispose their carry over stock at half the rates charged to the original homeowner. You only have to ask the local contractor who would be happy to oblige.
Look out for bargains on big ticket off the shelf items
The practical way of paring expenses is to purchase big ticket items like kitchen counter tops, modular shelves and racks, and fresh doors and windows at a heavy discount, and then plan the remodeling around the installed items.
Anything outsized or extra-large will create cost overruns
You could make a killing in savings sometimes up to $10,000 and more if you decide to stay true to standard sized kitchens and rooms. Customization is always expensive, whereas if you stick to standard models you could shave off a big slice of expenditure in working extra to match size, counter top color, finish and materials to the products you purchase. Opting to standardize would mean that you choose to stick to less expensive options while staying true to your budget.
Customized laminates are providing exciting finishes
The new laminates entering the market these days are minutely grained to imitate hardwood surfaces. For example, the Lowe’s laminated planks are currently selling under $2 per square foot. If you go for prefinished oak surfaces, you could be easily doubling your expenditure.
Expanding space could be an expensive proposition
If you decide to expand kitchen space to accommodate more cabinets you could be shelling out anything in the range of $50,000 to $100,000, but if you decide to refit existing spaces with pullout draws and foldable racks, you could restrict expenses within $35,000. The key is to maximize the utilization of existing space, making kitchen work more efficient and time saving.
Moving the fixtures could cost you a bomb
The seemingly utilitarian decision to relocate the toilet or shift the kitchen sink could set you back by $3,000 to $5,000. The best decision would be to build around the existing fittings to prevent disruption and expensive breakage and refitting of walls and flooring and hidden pipes.
Budget for contingencies
Preparing the budget may be easy but don’t forget to plough in 10 to 20% extra for contingencies. Remodeling is expensive, and you won’t know where hidden expenditure could surface.
Save on labor to the extent that is practically possible
The major installation work has to be handed over to the pros, but consider for a moment your own DIY skills, and plan what you can do to save on painting, trimming, and brushing. If you are really keen on doing some of the work yourself, you could access courses online that show you how it is done, and save a ton in labor costs and interior design. Other areas that you can save are demolition, cleaning up, carting away the waste or ordering and taking possession of supplies yourself as per the contractor’s specifications.
Postpone remodeling to the off season
Contractors will always charge more when the demand in summer months peaks for home remodeling work, so it might be worth considering renovation work in less expensive winter months when you gain hefty discounts, with a few freebies attached.
Work to a timely schedule that can be monitored
If you allow work to proceed in a haphazard and irregular manner, the chances of facing a cost overrun is higher. It is infinitely better to get the contractor to stick to a definitive time frame to save costs and labor and unplanned outsourcing to subcontractors.