Keep your Renovation on Time and on Budget
You’ve saved up for a home renovation and have the perfect design in mind, now you just need to find the right contractor. The problem is that contractors can vary greatly in skill and professionalism, the budgets can quickly increase out of control if not managed.
But don’t worry! This article is here to help you save money on your next renovation project by giving you ten budget-friendly tips to keep in mind. From researching contractors to following trends in design, here are ways to pursue your dream renovation at a price you can afford.
1. Start with a Budget
It may seem too obvious, but this is the key to a successful renovation. Before you start your search for contractors, it’s important to have an idea of your budget in mind. You don’t want to find contractors and then be surprised by how much they charge after the project has started.
Some of the factors that will affect your budget include:
- The size of the project
- The type or style of design desired
- Whether or not you work with a designer
- The materials you use (i.e., fixtures, appliances)
2. Consider Small Renovations
One of the easiest ways to save money on your renovation is to start small. Instead of starting with a major renovation such as a kitchen or bathroom, focus on a smaller project first with an emphasis on DIY. You can also scale back some of your project goals and consider upgrading in phases over time. This will not only allow you to budget more effectively, but also it’s easier to manage with fewer resources and time. You can complete the smaller project quickly and once it’s finished, you’ll know what to expect and how to budget for the next phase of your renovation.
3. Avoid Expensive Materials
One of the easiest ways to create a budget-friendly home renovation is by avoiding expensive materials or fixtures. There are many options for less costly material, such as laminate flooring, faux wood flooring, or plastic countertops. These options are aesthetically pleasing and can be just as functional as more expensive options.
If you want to splurge a little, another great technique is to prioritize which more expensive materials are the most important to you. Is it the wood floor or the granite countertop? The fancy range stovetop or the premium faucet fixtures?
Another budget-friendly tip is to wait until there are sales at home improvement stores before purchasing anything for your renovation project. This way you’ll save money on things like tile or paint colors that will eventually sell out or go up in price over time as people buy them up quickly after seeing the sale prices available.
4. Hire the Right Contractor
Finding the right contractor is an important first step in any renovation project. It’s crucial to take the time to find someone you feel comfortable with and who will be able to do your renovation the way it deserves to be done. You don’t want to rush this decision and end up regretting your choice! Talk to friends, read reviews, ask for references, and take some time to interview potential contractors. This doesn’t mean you need to grill them, but ask questions on your mind to get a feel for how confident, honest, and transparent the contractor is answering. Body language is important, too. If they don’t show up on time and are evading tough questions, it’s probably best to look elsewhere.
5. Get Help from Professionals and Experts
If you’re not sure where to begin on your renovation project, the best place to start is by getting help from professionals. Whether you hire someone to give you advice or hire a contractor to help with the project, make sure that they are experienced and qualified for your needs. Hiring qualified professionals can be more expensive than hiring a less-qualified contractor but it will save you time and money in the long run. Like with most things, you tend to get what you pay for. But that doesn’t excuse you from doing a bit of homework to make sure the contractors are a good fit.
Again, be sure to research contractors before hiring them. You should always check references, read reviews, and ask for their credentials before signing a contract. This way you can find out how reliable a contractor is, whether or not they are trustworthy, and what kind of work they have done in the past (which should offer some insight into their skill level).
6. Consider Off-Season Renovations
One of the best ways to save money on a renovation project is to choose an off-season. This will help you avoid some of the most expensive seasons with the highest demand and don’t forget to also consider other factors such as poor weather conditions. For example, if you are looking for a contractor in fall or winter, make sure they have experience working during these off-seasons and those conditions won’t affect your budget. By considering a project in the off-season, your contractor may have more flexibility, lower labor costs, and possibly even lower cost of materials if there are sale prices available.
7. Get Multiple Estimates
It’s always a good idea to have several estimates on hand before beginning renovations so that you have options when deciding on a price point and contractor for your project. It may feel like an inconvenience at first, but doing this sort of due diligence will save you money in the long run and a ton of potential heartache.
Finally, don’t forget about the small details of your renovation project! These can often add up quickly without giving them much thought while planning your project, but they’re important because they give your space its character and make it
8. Stick to the Budget
We all want our renovation projects to look perfect, but sticking to a budget is important. Make sure you set a budget and have an idea of how much you can afford to spend. You should also ask for bids from contractors as that will give you an idea of the final cost. If you are having difficulty finding contractors who can do your project affordably, ask friends and family if they know of anyone who could help or try searching on websites such as Thumbtack and Angie’s List. And of course, you can always contact us!
9. Communicate with Your Contractor
The most important thing you can do for your project is to communicate with the contractor so you can stick to a schedule. Make sure that you have a clear understanding of the scope of work, budget, and timeline for the project. By doing this, you can avoid any surprises or misunderstandings about what’s happening in your home. This will also give you an opportunity to talk about what you would like to see done in your renovation. We can’t stress this enough: communicate early and often and never assume you’re on the same page if you haven’t talked it through.
10. Mind the Timeline
One of the most important things to keep in mind during a renovation is the timeline. It’s critical to have an idea of how long certain tasks will take, and doing your research is vital to staying on track. You should consult with your contractor and get an idea of how long it will take them to complete different tasks, like demolition or putting in new cabinetry. You also want to communicate with your contractors if you want the project completed by a certain date so they can work within those parameters. The last thing you want is for them to start working on your project but not be able to finish it because they don’t have enough time to do everything you wanted.
Our Best Advice: “Measure Twice, Decide Once”
You may recall the wise carpenter adage to “measure twice, cut once.” The same applies for your overall approach to your home renovation project: take your time planning your project and selecting a contractor. That initial extra effort is the best way to increase your odds of staying on budget.
We’re proud to serve the residents of Athens, GA with their home renovation needs. Ready to get started? Just contact us and we’ll schedule a no-pressure consultation and offer a free estimate.