Without trimming quality.
Remodeling is expensive. But that doesn't mean you can't trim
excess costs out of your plan and remodel your kitchen or bath on a limited budget.
just have to know where to trim and where not to, such as on structural items
or on your contractor.
to save and when not to.
Everyone wants to save money. Unfortunately,
it is not always a wise decision to base decisions on cost alone. If you select
an inferior product because it is cheaper, you may end up needing to replace it
within a short time period which will cost you more in the long run. It is far
better to determine the durability of the product (its life span) and divide by
the cost. This will show you how much the product is costing you over time, not
only in the initial days of the project.
The Lowball Bid
may want to avoid it!
Another place to be careful cutting costs is when
selecting your contractor. The low-ball bid may be a sign of poor workmanship,
poor business practices or of a potential problem. Your project's success will
be directly linked to the skill and experience of your contractor. Take time to
interview contractors and their former clients to determine who will be the best
choice based on the work, not price. You will be happier in the end. Another benefit
of hiring a skilled professional is the experience he or she will bring to the
project. A professional contractor can make recommendations for less-costly alternatives
which will accomplish your goals for remodeling. This expertise is part of what
you will be paying for.
Where to Cut Costs...
In your product selection. The products you choose will determine
the bulk of your budget. If you lean toward solid surface counters and professional
ranges for your kitchen, you will not be considering a thrifty remodel. However,
if you just want a new counter because the old one is stained and you want a new
oven because you hate the color of your old one, you can save money.
can save even more if you are aware of how labor intensive certain projects are.
Even if the material itself costs the same, the installation fee could push you
over budget. Installing a custom pattern in your tile floor will automatically
cost more than using the same tile throughout the room. And tile of any kind will
cost more than installing laminate or vinyl flooring. Considering the labor requirements
before you select a particular product, is an easy way to trim costs.
About Your Budget
Look at your needs.
One of the best ways to
approach a budget remodel is to determine your needs. Why do you want to remodel?
What are you hoping to accomplish? This will show you whether you need structural
changes or merely a facelift.
Structural changes are any modification to
a room that alters the existing structure. If you plan on bumping out a wall or
adding a room, you are considering a structural change. Even moving a wall or
adding a skylight over your tub is considered structural.
the other hand, are cosmetic changes that alter the appearance of the room without
involving the structure underneath. The ceilings are not raised. The walls do
not move. This is the least expensive choice when remodeling the look of a room.
While this may sound more like decorating than remodeling, you may be surprised
what you can do without major demolition that will require the assistance of a
Where Can You Get More Help?
can be expensive, take advantage of all the resources you can. You can get a contract
and contractor review for a nominal fee from www.sconsumer.com. There are other
consumer advocacy groups that can also offer some assistance and help.
Take a Look at Some Pitfalls Now:
1. Not having a plan for your remodeling
and being organized can mean lots of wasted time and money. Not something you
are going to want to do.
2. Not creating a realistic budget based on
your current financial situation with the new bills in place. Then not reserving
at least 10% for a contingency fund.
3. Not remodeling your home with
your future in mind. You should keep your improvements in line with the length
of time you expect to stay in the home.
4. Not prioritizing your budget.
This could mean you spend more than anticipated when you realize that you have
some items that could have waited and need to spend more for things you haven't
purchased yet but need desperately. Prioritize first, then buy.
Jumping into a budget and remodeling project before you know how big your monthly
bills really will be. This could catch you off guard financially and cause a strain.
6. Thinking you are handier than you really are. This could mean a
do-it-yourself job gone bad. Unfortunately, many professionals won't take on a
do-it-yourself job that needs help. Be sure you can complete the job before you
7. Trying to electrical work yourself or climbing on top of
a steep roof for some repair. Safety first. There is no reason to take these jobs
on yourself and risk harm or injury.
8. Not considering small or superficial
changes for your home first. The small details can make a huge difference. You
don't always have to go big to get a significant change. You don't always have
to be conservative either. Be bold if you want to.
9. Hiring a contractor
on price instead of quality. Be sure to check around and ask lots of questions.
You need to be careful hiring contractors. Be sure you are gettingthe best deal
with the best quality.
10. Not checking out the contractor closely
enough. If you don't know how to,consider hiring a service, such as Smart Consumer
Services, to do it for you.
11. Not knowing what the red flags to avoid
are when hiring a contractor. Be sure you know these and are prepared to walk
away before signing the contract or within three days after (if the contract was
signed somewhere other than the contractor's office).
It's time for a quick
quiz before you exit the course. After you've taken it, be sure to review the
sections of the course related to your wrong answers!
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