I can tell you from first-hand experience that DIY home makeovers and hiring others to take on parts of the project are not easy!
One thing I always use and will share today is a home makeover checklist for planning an affordable renovation. We use this checklist of items as we consider any room renovation and it can be applied to a whole home renovation.
Trust me, when you start renovating one room, suddenly you get the urge to do another and another! Getting what you want and keeping things affordable, can be very stressful. It does not matter whether you are undertaking a DIY home makeover or hiring someone to undertake the project on your behalf.
Creating a budget for a project you have not done before is a challenge! Planning and research are required long before you knock down any walls or install anything new. Fortunately, there are steps that you can follow to create a home remodeling budget. These steps will help you stick to your budget without overspending.
Now let me share our Home makeover checklist for planning an affordable renovation so you can plan yours!
Home Makeover Checklist for Planning An Affordable Renovation
Stories of Triumph And Disaster.
We’ve had projects go smoothly and others not so much. I’ve had contractors that fell through our ceiling (true story) and freshly painted walls bulge with water that leaked from 2 separate renovations going on!
Michael was in the middle of a huge bathroom renovation. We had just finished our dining room, added chair rail, and brand new furniture arrived. At the same time, Michael was alternating projects.
He was working in our upstairs bathroom (the kids) and the dining room, multi-tasking. Once the dining room was done, he moved full throttle ahead in the bathroom. We got hit a snag when it came to the tub.
The tub was much larger than we actually understood (this was on our bathroom planner, not our mistake). Therefore, we had to hire a plumber to get the tub fit and situated. The plumber could only do a part of the job on one day and another a different.
We were left with a bucket under a faucet, just in case. The bucket caught the drips, no issues.
The Story You Need To Avoid
At the same time, the plumber was working, the electrician needed to run a line. They alternated days they were here. The electrician went up into the attic (all floored) and suddenly I heard, “I need a little help!”
I came out of the kitchen to find 2 legs dangling through my ceiling. Once I got him out of the ceiling and called my husband, we called for a repair to the ceiling. But the punishment did not end here.
3 days later I was in the dining room, unboxing dishes and I saw a BULGE on the wall. Apparently, when the electrician fell through the ceiling he had been in the bathroom and had moved the bucket (planning on going back in to replace it) but with all the chaos did not. In fact, he had somehow rocked the bucket from his fall almost above and water flooded between the wall.
The bulge was behind the paint. Michael used a pin to drain it all (it was huge) and then the paint all shriveled and came off the wall.
Lesson learned. One contractor at a time. No buckets EVER with any kind of water. A checklist to remind us of a time schedule and follow a calendar. We should have made the plumber do all of his work before the electrician. Shoulda. Woulda. Coulda. Right?
What is the Cost of Remodeling a House? ✅
A recent expert opinion article on HomeAdvisor points out that redecorating a home with a size of less than 1,000 square feet costs an average of $18,347. If you have a home whose size is in the 3,000-4,000 square foot range, you should expect to spend up to $36,121 on a remodeling project.
Generally, it costs more to redecorate an older home than a newer home since you will need to replace plumbing, electrical, and other systems that don’t meet the latest regulations. On average, home renovation costs at least $100-$200 per square feet regardless of the scale of the project.
When you are deciding on the budget for such a project, it will be easier and more affordable if you prioritize the renovation projects by room. This way, you can create a budget around the cost of individual projects.
Renovating kitchens cost an average of $12,000 to $33,000, while bathrooms cost $6,000 to $14,000. On the other hand, expect to spend an average of $10,000 to $27,000 for basement renovation projects.
How Much Should You Spend on Home Renovation? ✅
✅To get an idea about how much a home remodeling project should cost, you must first consider the property’s value. Get this online if you don’t know it.
Indeed, it doesn’t make sense to spend up to 10-15% of the home’s value in one room. If you find yourself spending more on aspects such as home décor, it means that the cost of the project isn’t proportionate doesn’t add any value to the home.
For instance, if your home’s value is $100,000, you shouldn’t spend more than $15,000 renovating the bathroom. The cost can be more than that if your home’s value is higher.
This means that you have to keep the cost of components such as Laundry Equipment low, while still ensuring that the project meets your expectations.
✅Bring In A Design-Build Contractor Early On!
Often, most homeowners don’t have an idea about where to start. If you are one such homeowner, it is advisable that you bring in a design-build contractor during the early stages of the project. This way, they can listen to your needs and guide you in the budget-making process.
Determining Financing Before Budget Finalization ✅
Before you even start coming up with a budget for the project, you must determine how you will finance it. Whether you are paying for it in cash or using a bank loan, it is always advisable that the budget of the project fits within the limits of the available funds.
Once you have a clear idea of how much finances you have at your disposal, it is recommended that you set aside an extra 10 to 20% of the available funds for miscellaneous expenses. ✅
The funds can come in handy, especially if something goes wrong, or anything ends up being more expensive than you projected. By doing so, you will have sufficient funds to complete the project regardless of what happens. (just as I described above).
You should also consider hiring a contractor to undertake some exploratory, investigative work, or demolition to ascertain that there isn’t any unforeseen work that you may need to undertake. ✅
As soon as you organize funding for the project, you should use these steps to create a detailed work plan and budget.
1. Prioritize Your Remodeling Needs ✅
✅ The simplest way to stay within budget when renovating your home is to have an idea about what you want to achieve. This involves drafting a list of things that you want to be incorporated into the project.
✅ After that, separate the items into needs and wants.
For instance, it isn’t sensible to install a new kitchen counter, yet you have plans to change the floor plan or upgrade your cabinets. Simply put, you should do everything in the right order to save time and money.
In this regard, there are several pertinent questions that you should ask yourself. These are;
What would you like the project to do?
What details are needed to make that come to fruition?
Is there anything that you are willing to compromise?
What aspects are you ready to splurge on?
2. Draft a Detailed Remodeling Plan ✅
After setting the objective of the project, you should draft a detailed plan that highlights all the expected costs. This plan will help you create a budget as well as communicating what you want to the contractors.
In this regard, create a spreadsheet that captures each segment of the project. This spreadsheet should also include the estimated labor and material costs. Besides this, plan on how you will tackle any unforeseen issues that might arise, and how these issues will affect the project’s budget. ✅
3. ✅ DEALING WITH CONTRACTORS 101
Request Multiple Project Estimates from Contractors.
Now that you know what you need and you can afford the cost of each item, you should go ahead and find a contractor who will be comfortable working with the available funds.
You should only consider local companies that have good reviews from previous clients, and after that, ask them to create bids for your project. You should compare at least three bids from different contractors.
When interviewing contractors whose bids are within your project goals, you should be clear about both the project and its budget. If a contractor understands that you intend to stick to a constrained budget, it will be easier for him/her to take you through extra expenses, time delays, as well as project changes that you should expect. ✅
Also, check your local online neighborhood website. Capture the ‘who did not complete, who did complete, who is a dirty worker’ etc. gossip there. Know before you hire. Your neighbors will tell the truth.
How to Save Expenses When Undertaking Home Renovation
The following tips can help you make significant savings off your home renovation budgets. Remember, doing as much as you can on your own will save you a great deal of money.
- Undertake demolitions yourself. If you are getting rid of cabinets or floor tiles as part of the project, consider doing this work yourself. This will significantly reduce labor costs.
- Order basic finishes and fixtures yourself since the contractor is likely to charge hourly fees to do the shopping on your behalf.
- If possible, be the project manager. In case you need addition subcontractors for the project, you should interview and choose them yourself rather than letting the general contractor do that.
- Carry out painting work yourself. Hiring a professional to paint one room costs at least $300. If some of the rooms that you are renovating need basic painting work, consider going the DIY way.
- Shop around for used items rather than purchasing everything brand new. There are dozens of used and refurbished items that you can incorporate into your project to save costs.
For us, Michael always picks up the supplies. We prefer to look, touch and feel. Also, it is less likely that the contractor will have to leave. We had one leave midway through painting telling us that the paint was not right.
What we found out, is that he needed to go to another job for a few hours. He left me in a mess, with his supplies everywhere and no trace of him. Returning hours later and calling it a day, created me to question him. Needless to say, I don’t think anyone will have issues with him again! Think ahead. Be prepared.
If you are undertaking a home renovation, the easiest way to work within the budget is to incorporate DIY projects. This will help you save costs besides ensuring that you complete the project within schedule.
This is a sponsored post.