Laying out a tile floor; photo courtesy Michelle Rebecca
This article was updated on 08/09/20.
When it comes to home renovation, wasting money on extras like exotic granite countertops, designer tile, and more is easier than you think. As always, want is a very different animal than need.
As a victim of many last-minute decisions to do unnecessary upgrades that just drained my wallet and offered little value in return, were I to do it all over again I would definitely be much firmer about saying yes to some things and a loud, resounding no to others.
What makes my list? Read on.
Dont Do More Just Because the Equipments There
I wish I had a nickel for every time a contractor said to me, Well, you really should just do that project now, because well have the equipment here already.
Heres the problem: I always agreed but didnt have the extra funds to actually add that extra room or put in the pool. So while those with unlimited resources can take full advantage of having machines with Caterpillar parts on their properties, it wrecked my budget.
Do Your Driveway Last
Speaking of big machines—and lets include dumpsters in this admittedly broad definition—dont even think about doing your driveway renovation before a big construction project.
Huge trucks and heavy equipment not only cause big holes, they can wreck your landscaping design. Do your wallet a favor and do the exterior once the interior footprint is complete. Work from the inside out. As they say, Dont paint yourself into a corner.
No One Cares About Exotic Granite or Designer Tile
When was the last time you heard someone say, Yes, but is it exotic granite? Thats right: never. So dont waste twice the money on costlier granite when all anyone really cares about is that its granite.
The same goes for tile, although you can feel free to browse a tile designers online catalog for inspiration.
Dont Move Appliances and Systems
Moving anything that needs a drainage pipe, water, or a gas line means adding a huge amount to your electrical and plumbing tab. Whenever possible, work within your existing footprint. Even as small a thing as new sink drains not lining up can be a headache but there is a solution. Here is one misaligned sink solution.
Sure, your contractor will tell you its no big deal to move your toilet, but check out two estimates just in case. And put the money youll save toward your next vacation, because youll need one after all this renovating.
Know When to Hire a Professional
Many homeowners instinctively think, hey! I can put that deck in/change that electrical panel/install a new roof myself! Guess what? Unless youre an industry professional, you know exactly what youre getting into, you have a lot of knowledgeable friends and you have a lot of free time, you cant.
The point? Know when youre beaten and hire a professional instead. A good place to find one is by word of mouth. They say that's the best advertising.
Always check for valid licensure, ask for references, and verify insurance coverage. Theres nothing worse than finding out too late that your contractor skipped town with half your deposit. That's the first step to renovating smarter, not harder.
About the Author:
Michelle is a blogger and freelancer. Shes written about almost every topic under the sun, and loves constantly learning about new subjects and industries while shes writing. In her spare time she enjoys spending time outdoors with her dogs.