Estimated reading time: 7 minutes
Don’t let your next home improvement project turn into a money pit. These remodeling budget hacks will save you money and help you save money.
10 Easy Ways To Save On A Home Remodel
Home improvements are just a fact of life when it comes to homeownership, but they can be quite expensive.
Whether you have a small or big project costs can quickly get out of hand.
My family has gone through many in-home renovations. And many we have done on a budget.
Two of our projects were very creative and budget friendly upgrades.
So now, let’s talk about some ways that you can save money before beginning your home improvement project, and how you might be able to save a little cash once the project has begun.
Set Aside An Account Just For Your Home Improvement
If possible, open an account that you can use to save and pay for your home improvements.
This can help to prevent overspending once the project begins because you know exactly how much money you have to work with.
On that note, you need to save approximately 10% more than what you think the project will cost for unexpected expenses.
You can have a set amount of money deposited into the account from each paycheck, and deposit extra when you have the chance.
Having a dedicated account for your home improvement projects can keep you from overspending or sending your household finances into disarray.
Create And Stick To A Budget
Once you have established a home improvement account now, it is necessary to establish a budget for your project.
A budget-friendly home renovation doesn’t mean cheap at all.
It means you are wise with your money.
If you are doing your own home renovation, I would highly suggest setting a dollar amount to be spent on your project before you make any design choices.
Then you can price out materials based on your price point.
Since I really like seeing everything at a glance.
I create a spreadsheet for each project. It easily allows for calculations and I can see what I am spending and what amount I have left.
It is important to allow for what I like to call mishaps.
When you begin a home improvement project, you may have to improve other structures you didn’t realize were a problem. Allow for 10% of your budget to be flexible for this reason.
Wait for Sales Before Making Any Big Purchase
There are certain times of the year when you can get great deals on big-ticket items like appliances, TVs, mattresses, and outdoor furniture.
These sales are often centered around holidays like President’s Day or Memorial Day. If you can, wait to purchase these items when they are on sale.
I often love to visit my home improvement stores for scratch and dented items.
Recently, I purchase a cabinet for our laundry room and paid half price. I ended up painting the cabinet a different color, hiding the imperfections.
Sell What You No Longer Need
If you have furniture, clothes, video game consoles, or anything really that you no longer need or use, consider selling those items online or having a yard sale.
You end up with more space, less clutter, and some cash that you can put toward your next home improvement project.
Selling what you no longer need also applies to home appliances, hardware, cabinets, doors, windows, or fixtures that you may no longer be using.
Replacing your light fixtures with some new ones?
Sell the old ones to help offset the costs, and help someone else in their renovation project at the same time.
Learn How to DIY
You can save a lot of money on your home improvement projects if there are some tasks that you can do yourself.
Don’t jump in over your head, as this can cost you more money in the long run if you need a professional to fix your mistakes.
There are lots of tasks that you can learn how to do on your own though, like painting, or changing out a faucet.
Many home improvement chains offer DIY weekend workshops or online tutorials to walk you through smaller projects.
Talk to More Than One Contractor
Before beginning any type of major home improvement project, you will need to interview 3 to 5 reputable, licensed, and bonded contractors in your area.
This will give you a much better idea of how much your project is going to cost in the end.
Generally speaking, you should go with a bid that is in the middle of the highest and lowest bid.
Learn About Materials
Learn about the materials that can be used to complete your project and go and see them for yourself. Sure, granite countertops might be nice, but they also come with an expensive price tag.
There are other less expensive materials that look just as great at a fraction of the cost.
When considering the materials you will be using for your home improvement project, also consider if what you currently have could be refurbished.
For example, instead of tearing out your kitchen cabinets and replacing them, could you give them a fresh coat of paint and new handles instead?
Consider Reclaimed Items For Your Home Improvement Projects
You can save a considerable amount of money by using reclaimed items instead of brand-new ones. Examples of reclaimed items include windows, doors, cabinetry, and even hardwood floors.
Salvage yards, thrift stores, garage sales, and Habitat For Humanity Restores are excellent places to look.
Your contractor may also have some resources for reclaimed items.
Take Your Time
Home improvement projects take time, usually more time than you think they will, so be prepared to be patient.
If you don’t have all the money, you need to complete your project right now.
Waiting until you do will give you peace of mind, and allow you more time to think about what you really want out of your finished project.
Planning your project is half the fun, so take your time and enjoy it.
Another thing to consider about timing is the amount of time it is taking to get items like appliances, lumber, and, in some cases, even nails and screws.
It may be better to wait until you have all the items needed for your project before you begin. That way, you don’t have to worry about having to put your project on hold in the middle of it.
This is especially true for heavily used areas of the home, like your kitchen, laundry room, or bathroom.
Hire Professional Help When Needed
Not all of us possess skills.
In fact, I feel very confident completing smaller projects, but when it comes to more complex projects, I would rather hire help from local contractors.
I don’t want to start a complicated project not completely understanding or having the skill set to complete it.
Hiring someone is smart. In the end, doing the job right the first time will save you time and money.
One quick note about hiring help.
While for some projects, there is no off-season. But hiring a professional after the holidays and before summer can save you more money. I do like to check Angie’s list as part of my research.