For homeowners, remodeling will always be an exciting time. After all, it’s an opportunity to give a home a new look or even a new function by the time the remodeling is done.
However, a home remodeling project will always be an expensive one, with the cost of materials constantly rising.
Getting the services of an excellent builder or a reputable roofing contractor also wouldn’t come cheap, and rightly so.
Still, keeping your home remodeling costs down isn’t impossible. Here are some practical tips that will help you do just that.
1. Shop Around For Great Deals
From time to time, hardware stores sell construction materials at a discount.
Drive around town and look for stores holding sales on tiles, cement, toilets, kitchen countertops, paint, plywood, and other materials you may need for your remodeling project.
You can also go online to search for great deals.
2. Consider Using Recycled Materials
If you’re going the DIY route for your remodeling project, you might want to hit recycling centers to find salvaged items that sell them at deep discounts.
Most contractors won’t agree to use recycled materials for their projects, but if you’re remodeling your house by yourself, going for recycled or lightly-used materials like light fixtures, doorknobs, insulation, and even bathtubs will help you save lots of money.
3. Switch To More Affordable Materials
Yes, a granite kitchen countertop is the king of all kitchen countertops in terms of looks, quality, and price. If you have the money for it, then go for it, by all means.
However, if $40 to $60 per square foot of granite is a bit out of your range, there’s no shame in switching to more affordable but just as lovely countertop materials such as engineered stone and ceramic tile.
The same thing applies to most other materials you need for remodeling.
4. Ask Contractors For Leftovers From Previous Jobs
More often than not, contractors have materials left over from past jobs.
Ask your contractor about extra shingles, pipes, tiles, wires, and various odds and ends lying around in their stock room, and you might just be able to buy them at a much lower price.
5. Buy Your Materials In Advance
If you’re planning a home remodel a year or two from now, you might want to consider buying construction materials ahead of time, given that their prices almost always go up with each passing year.
Purchase the materials you need when they’re at their cheapest and store them until you get the project off the ground.
6. Pick Up The Materials Yourself
Unless the store where you buy your construction materials offers free delivery, you should haul the materials yourself, especially if you have a truck. You can save on delivery charges that way.
7. DIY Demolition
Let’s assume that, like most people, you don’t have the skills necessary to take on a remodeling project yourself.
However, if your remodeling entails knocking down a wall or two, no skills are required to do the job. All you need is time, strength, and a sledgehammer, and you won’t have to spend for demolition.
Of course, you can’t just pick up a sledgehammer and start pounding on the walls. Consult with a professional first and make sure the target wall isn’t load-bearing.
You will also need professional advice to help you avoid hitting live electrical wires or plumbing.
8. Install Light Tubes Instead of New Windows
There’s nothing better than natural light, and remodeling gives you the chance to add more windows to get more of it inside your home.
However, adding windows can get expensive. A more economical way of letting more natural light into your home is installing what is called a “light tube,” which slips easily between roof rafters to brighten any part of your home with sunlight.
9. Don’t Touch The Plumbing, If Possible
Unless absolutely necessary, avoid moving drain lines because doing so can cost you thousands of dollars.
If your remodeling focuses on areas with plumbing, make sure your planning for the project revolves around them, not the other way around.
10. Get Quotes From Multiple Contractors
You can’t just hire the first contractor you meet if you want to save money on your remodeling.
As much as possible, get estimates from at least three contractors.
Take a closer look at their work methods, building materials (if they’re providing them), and timelines, among other things.
Determine for yourself if the estimates are too high or too low before making a decision.
11. Hire Only Insured Contractors
One of the biggest mistakes a homeowner can make when remodeling is hiring contractors who don’t carry general liability and worker’s compensation insurance policies.
Perhaps uninsured contractors don’t charge clients much, but if any of their workers sustain an injury while working on your remodeling project, you could be held responsible. The same goes if they cause property damage within your home.
Hiring roofers who don’t have roofing insurance, or any uninsured subcontractor may initially save you money, but it will cost you more in the long run, especially when something untoward happens at the worksite.
You can avoid being in that situation by hiring only licensed and properly insured contractors for your remodeling project.
Fun as remodeling projects are, they can also be stressful, especially if your expenses are skyrocketing. Hopefully, the tips above can help you keep your costs—and your stress levels—down.
About the Author
Rachel Porter is the content specialist for Custom Contractors Insurance, LLC, an Arizona roofing and contractors insurance company. When not writing, she enjoys reading and mountain biking with her friends.
Photo: James Harper