There’s one thing our customers always wonder about, but hesitate to ask us: How can they save money on their home remodeling. It’s totally understandable. Nobody in Peoria wants to sound cheap, or offend someone they may be doing business with in the near future; but on the other hand, when it comes to hiring home renovation contractors to remodel your home, you are about to commit a lot of money to a project, and saving money is a valid concern.
To save our customers the potential stress of having to ask how to save money on home remodeling, we thought we would just share the best ways we know to save money. And don’t worry—as Peoria’s favorite remodeling contractor, TWD will never cut corners by trying to fly under the radar and not get the required permits, subcontract your job out to cheap unqualified laborers, or recommend low-cost materials that won’t hold up.
TWD has been a home renovation contractor in Peoria for over 20 years and our reputation is valuable to us, so you can be assured that we want you to be so happy with our work that any time someone you know needs a remodeling contractor, or even a general contractor, you will be eager to provide them with our name.
Saving money on home remodeling starts with the planning phase, and carries through right to the installation of the last drawer handle. Here are some of our best tips for lowering the final bill from your remodeling contractor, while still ending up with a remodeled home that will make you happy for many years.
1. Avoid Changing the Floorplan
Extending rooms to increase the total square footage of your home is one of the most expensive tasks to have home renovation contractors do. Not only is the expense of demolishing and reconstructing an outside wall involved, but you also have to extend the foundation. It’s much more cost efficient to move interior walls if you need to enlarge a particular room.
2. Don’t Change Window Size
Similarly to extending the floor, if you ask your home renovation contractor to put in bigger windows, the outside walls have to be cut into and that is a much more involved process than upgrading to new windows of the same size.
However, if a room feels small and dark, opening up the window space to get more natural light may be the one big modification you want to take on (see #3 below).
3. Keep Plumbing and Electrical Connections in Place
Rearranging the large fixtures in the bathroom, or changing the placement of major appliances in the kitchen will require your general contractor to engage the services of a plumber and electrician. Additionally, walls will have to be knocked out and new ones built to facilitate moving electrical lines and plumbing. All these things add up to major expenses, so if saving money is a top priority, plan your new design around the current layout.
3. Stick to One Big Change
To get a lot of mileage out of your investment, make a dramatic change—but stick to only one big thing, and stick to smaller upgrades for everything else. For example, adding an island to the kitchen, if you have enough room, can turn wasted space into a highly functional work center with a second sink, wine chiller, trash compactor, hidden recycling bins, and more. On the other hand, if you have an island in a cramped kitchen, removing it will open up the space. Depending on how you use the kitchen, you may not even miss it.
A single major renovation will have a dramatic effect, and then you can stick to smaller projects for the remainder of the room.
4. Incorporate Universal Design for Aging in Place
If you are intending to stay in your home for many years, chances are you will need to add modifications to meet your needs as you age. Why not have your remodeling contractor build in useful and aesthetic accommodations during renovation instead of waiting and doing bit and piece modifications later? TWD has certified universal design professionals on staff, who are trained in the latest styles and designs for making every part of your home accessible to anyone, whether they are aged, young, disabled, or even just short or tall.
5. Select Quality Mid-Range Cabinets
Custom cabinets can add a lot to the appearance of your kitchen and bathrooms, but they are also significantly more expensive than good quality cabinets that are available ready-made. We offer many durable styles in a range of colors, so you can create the look you want without having to order custom cabinets.
6. Make Sure the Bathroom Fan Vents to the Outdoors
In some older or less carefully constructed homes, the bathroom lacks a fan, or has one that vents to the attic. Make sure your general contractor checks on the fan when you are making your home remodeling plans.
How is adding a fan a money-saving tip? Accumulated moisture is one of the most likely sources of damage to your home, and the bathroom gets wet every time someone takes a shower. A good exhaust fan clears the air and removes excess moisture, preventing expensive damage from occurring.
7. Go Doorless on the Shower
You can save a significant amount of money by leaving the glass doors off the shower and using a curtain instead. Even better, though, several designs for curbless showers are laid out so that they don’t require either one. We encourage you to come by our showroom to see what we mean. The elegant style of these universal design products will make your bathroom look like a spa.
8. DIY Minor Demolition
Doing minor demolition yourself can save money, but it may not be as much as you’d think. There are two factors to consider—you will be responsible for dealing with the waste materials, which the general contractor would include in their cost, and you might do some damage that will be costly to repair. It’s a good idea to discuss your ideas about doing work yourself with your remodeling contractor during the planning phase. That way you can be certain that your plan is safe, and that it will actually save you money.
9. Donate Instead of Dispose
There may be installed items that you will be getting rid of that have value to someone else. Cabinets are the best example, but tubs, sinks, and doors are also commonly desirable. Habitat for Humanity is a nation-wide charity organization that TWD is partnering with. They will come take the cabinets right off the walls, and we will provide you the tax documents you need to get credit for the charitable contribution.
You could also sell them online or through a local classified ad, but then you have to deal with strangers in your house and possible damage to other surfaces during the removal, so you are probably better off to donate them and take the tax credit.
10. Make Use of Overstock and Reusable Hardwood
It’s worth asking home renovation contractors if they have a stock of flooring or other materials left from other jobs, or in the case of hardwood, maybe even removed from another home. You won’t get to be picky about exact colors or patterns, but may be able to save money by using what they have available.
11. Use Alternatives to Hardwood
Hardwood flooring is beautiful and lasts for many years, so can be a great investment. However, the investment is substantial, especially if you go for one of the rarer wood species. Bamboo can be harder than oak, and a terrific alternative to hardwood. (It isn’t a wood, it’s technically a grass, but is one of the oldest building materials used by man.) There are over 1,000 species of bamboo, so make sure you do your research and choose wood that will hold up, which has been made into flooring by a reputable manufacturer.
Another replacement for the usual hardwoods is Lyptus, which is made from a sustainably-grown eucalyptus hybrid. It has an exotic grain, and is often compared to mahogany.
12. Utilize the Power of Color
A fresh coat of paint can make a room look new, but changing the color can give it a whole new feeling. By simply combining the right colors, you can change the style of a room. A brightly colored accent wall makes a bold statement, whereas white trim against tan walls can create an elegant and airy feeling. You can create any style and feeling using color psychology, and painting is one of the least expensive ways to make a big impact.
13. Schedule During the Slow Season
Here in Peoria, winter doesn’t put a halt to construction, but there are times of the year when remodeling contractors are busier than others. Many people like to get work done during summer, when the kids are out of school and they can go away. The fall is also popular because people want remodeling to be done before a big family holiday gathering, or the end of the year. You may be able to get lower rates during the slower times of year, which is usually early in the year.
14. Design Around Standard Dimensions
Anything that is customized is going to cost more, so sticking with stock sizes will save money. Even if you get a greatly discounted appliance, if it is a non-standard size your general contractor may have to take out cabinets or move a dividing wall to accommodate it, and you will end up with unexpected costs. Measure the entire kitchen carefully, including windows and doors before you begin making plans.
15. Communicate with Your Home Renovation Contractor
Mind reading is not part of the skill set of a remodeling contractor, so be sure to speak up and share your ideas when you are in the planning phase. Any changes you make later will cost more than if they were included in the original plan, and you may not be able to change what you want to, so be sure you have a good plan in place when you start, and stick to it.
If you would like more information on the best deals in Peoria or Phoenix home remodeling, give us a call at 623-544-1211. Our certified design professionals can help with every step of your project, and come up with a plan that is both practical when it comes to expense and exciting with respect to the results you will get to live with.