How To Lower Home Renovations Costs – Forbes Advisor

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Home renovation costs can add up quickly if not properly managed. If you plan carefully and do thorough research, you can save hundreds if not thousands of dollars on a remodeling project. These creative money-saving ideas will still get you a great remodel but at a fraction of the price.

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1. Do Your Own Demo

If you have the tools and the time, consider doing demolition work on your own. Doing your own demolition work for a home renovation will save you loads on labor costs if you hired a contractor to do the work. Be sure to do so safely, and wear the proper protection.

2. Have a Budget

Before beginning a home renovation project, create a detailed budget. You might need to factor in the cost of a hotel for a couple of nights during a renovation or dining costs if your kitchen will be off-limits for a while. Once you have an idea of costs, add 10% to that budget to account for any cost overruns.

3. Avoid Debt

Easier said than done, right? There are plenty of financing options out there for home improvements, like a home equity line of credit (HELOC) but beware, not all home improvements have a high return on investment.

Remodeling Magazine annually publishes a cost vs. value report for home improvements, which is a good resource when planning a renovation.

4. Develop Detailed Plan

Like planning a budget, set a detailed plan for a remodeling project. Define the scope of your project and stay within those parameters. It’s easy to let your imagination run wild, but if you stick to the plan, you’ll have a project that comes in at cost and one you’ll love.

5. Get Permits

Forgetting to get building permits for a home renovation can be a common mistake. Correcting the mistake, however, can become costly. If your renovation doesn’t meet building codes, a building inspector can make you rip it up and start over.

6. Reuse Materials

Your cabinets might drive you nuts or you can’t stand the cabinet fixtures. Think twice before throwing either out. You can easily paint your cabinets for a new look or use those fixtures elsewhere.

7. Pick Up Your Own Materials

Save on delivery costs by hauling your own materials. Home improvement stores often rent trucks you can fill up to haul material. Or you can search for a trailer you can haul behind your SUV to pick up materials for your home renovation project.

8. Do Your Own Painting

You don’t have to be an experienced DIYer to paint walls in your home. A little preparation and some know-how will get the job done. A coat of new paint on your cabinets can give your kitchen a fresh look at a low cost, too.

9. Tile a Backsplash

Learning to tile a backsplash is a terrific beginner DIY project that can be a great home improvement project. A backsplash project can be completed in a weekend or less with a cost of $500 or less. It’s a great way to update an older kitchen.

10. Refinish Floors

Rather than replacing your flooring, you can opt to refinish them, if you have hardwood floors or something like Pergo flooring. You can pick up a liquid etcher to scrub the floor and add a new finish for a refreshed look. You can refinish floors in as little as a day and for around $100.

11. Find Cabinet Deals

Cabinets tend to be one of the most expensive items in a kitchen remodeling project, but if you shop around you might be able to find deals at cabinet stores. Maybe they have old models or showroom cabinets they no longer need. Consider reducing the amount of cabinets you have to create more space in your kitchen.

12. Amazon Warehouse

Amazon Warehouse features used or open-box products that you can get some great deals on. It’s a little bit of buyer beware but Amazon Warehouse provides condition categories to help you select a product. It’s a good spot for kitchen appliances and furniture.

13. Price Matching

If you’ve scoured the web and found a great deal, see if a local retailer will match the deal. Oftentimes a retailer will and you’ll save money by not having to pay shipping costs.

14. Create Space

Find additional storage spots without having to tear down walls. Sometimes if you add some pullout drawers, you can clear up some additional space in your kitchen at a fraction of the cost.

15. Find Knock-offs

If you want a fancy look but don’t want to pay those kinds of prices, try looking for a material that mimics the look you want. There are plenty of flooring options available that will give you a look at expensive hardwood flooring if you search hard enough.

16. Leave Plumbing Alone

Plumbing costs add up, so don’t plan on re-routing water lines through your house because you want to move a sink or a toilet. It’s not only the material cost that adds up when moving plumbing, but there’s the additional cost of tearing up parts of the hose to route the pipes. Instead, work with what you have.

17. Find a Cost-Effective Contractor

Contractors get busy during the summer months, so if you can, hire one during slow periods like winter to get a better deal. Contractors who need the business might cut you a deal in labor and save you money on your remodeling project.

18. Remove Debris Cheaply

If you’re planning on a big remodeling project, chances are you’ll need a dumpster. You can rent them, but they’re not cheap. Make sure you maximize the space of a dumpster by placing debris strategically. Place longboards along the length of the dumpster and place items like a bathtub facing up so you can put other trash in the tub.

19. Find Deals

Like with Amazon Warehouse, check out showroom models and scratch and dent models at local retailers. A small, barely recognizable dent in an appliance can result in steep savings. An open-box item might not have anything wrong with it, but you can get it at a discount. Usually, you can call a retailer to see what they have before venturing out.

20. Do Projects in Pieces

Although you might have a laundry list of renovation projects you want to complete, it’s best to piece them out. By breaking the projects up, you can plan better and secure better deals because you can narrow your focus.

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