A financial expert weighed in on how the pandemic will affect construction. He warned homeowners that renovation and construction costs might set you back 50 percent more and take 50 percent longer than usual. These numbers are brutal and most likely enough to deter any homeowner from doing home projects while the pandemic and recession rage on.
But these dire projections need not stop you from turning your residential property into the dream home you want it to be. You can take plenty of steps to ensure that improving your home doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg or that this renovation won’t make you house-poor. Here are some tips and pointers for saving money on renovation and construction costs this 2021.
Take it one step at a time.
First of all, are you doing a soft renovation or a hard one? What are your priorities right now, and can your renovations wait until the pandemic is over? Without knowing your goals or having a long-term plan for your home, the scope of the project would understandably be overwhelming, especially under the conditions we’re in.
The way to combat this is by making a list of what’s important to you and your family right now—like a home office and a homework station, for example—and prioritizing those urgent needs over everything else. Your wants can follow when the health and economic conditions of the world are much better.
Create a budget and don’t abandon it.
We live in a time when we need to know exactly where we want to allocate our money, especially in something as large a scale as a home renovation. It’s vital to know how much of your total savings or income is allotted for this particular home project, whether it’s a simple re-paint or something bigger like a kitchen remodel. Before making decisions on layout and design, consider starting with a dollar amount that you’re capable of spending.
Then you can price materials and fixtures to gain an insight into what is workable within your budget and what isn’t. Do whatever you need to do to keep every dollar into account; create spreadsheets, make lists, calculate every potential expense—and don’t go outside of your set budget when the renovations begin.
Paying for your home renovation with the money you now have will save you an exorbitant amount you’d end up paying in interest if you choose to pay with a credit card or take out a loan. It only makes sense to take out a loan for renovations if you’re planning to sell your home and there might be a return on your investment, but if the renovations are for your forever home, paying cash is your safest and best bet. If you can’t afford the project now, take steps to cut back on your current household expenses to save enough for the renovation.
Reclaim and reuse old materials.
One of the biggest ways you can cut back on renovation expenses is reusing old cabinetry and some appliances. Even if there are no items in your home that you can reuse, you can still purchase fixtures and materials from salvage yards and even from buy-sell-and-trade websites. Going through the salvaging process can add so much fun, history, and character to your home. Saving money and the planet is a bonus too.
Use a blend of high and low-end items and materials.
Get the most bang for your buck by spending more only on items that need to last longer, like fixings that help keep you safe. Don’t scrimp on fixing supplies that keep your cabinets and doors in place. Balance is key, and only you would know how to spare no expense for more impactful areas. At the same time, when purchasing more high-end items or materials, don’t buy the first item you see.
Wait for big sales and discounts—there are times of the year that are much better for buying big-ticket items. Some examples include Black Friday for power tools and electronics, American holidays for appliances, and the tail-end of the summer for lawn care items and outdoor furniture. Don’t let impatience get in the way of your getting a good deal.
Home renovations can be one of the stressful things we have to go through as homeowners and some of the most exciting. Home-building can help grow our character in unexpected ways, and investing in something as big as this can help you be a more patient and resilient person. Enlist the help of your family members and turn it into a family project. You’re in this together!