As exciting as it is to remodel your home, one thing that has to be considered beforehand is a realistic budget. No one likes to talk money up front, but trust us, it’s better to establish your financial parameters as a first step rather than a last step! With all of the inspiring home renovation shows and pretty home transformation photos on Pinterest, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of a potential remodel. Unfortunately, those TV shoes and online photos almost never tell the whole story, nor do they go into the details of actual project costs. For that reason, the picture of a high-end luxury remodel at an astoundingly low cost is painted in the mind of the consumer, creating a serious case of sticker-shock when the real price quotes are presented!
While there isn’t much you can do in regard to the cost of remodeling, there are a few things you can do to help establish your budget and position yourself for a smooth, surprise-free financial transaction:
1. Make a detailed master plan
A master plan gives you a high view of your project. List all the rooms you intend to include in your remodel and make a general list of what you’d like done in each one. It helps to have consistency in your list—for example, start with the flooring in each room and work your way up to the trim, paint, furniture, walls, lighting, etc. This format will make it easier when it comes time to purchase products, as you will likely want to match things like flooring and paint colors. If you have a very large-scale remodel, it might also be wise to separate the project into two or more phases, starting with the one of the utmost priority. In some cases, it’s better to do everything at once, however, we all know that money, time, and other factors have a way of interfering with our good intentions. Breaking down your project into phases at the beginning will prevent a headache later on, in the event that not everything can be completed at the same time.
2. Do your research
Before you check this step off your list, no: watching HGTV does NOT count as doing research! As mentioned, home renovation prices and timelines discussed on TV simply are not representative of a real-life major remodel. Do yourself a favor and forget any ideas you have retained from television when it comes to your own project!
A much better too is Google—simply search how much the project you are considering costs. You’ll see a lot of great articles that discuss the reality of the cost. Be aware that not every article is accurate, but you should find some consistency if you run multiple searches.
The main tool we tend to refer our clients to is Remodeling Magazines’ annual Cost vs Value Report. It’s not exact, but it does provide relatively accurate and realistic pricing for a variety of major remodeling projects. One of the best things about this report is that it lists prices based on your location in the US instead of just a general blanket number.
3. Hire a design-build firm or remodeling contractor to create a design & estimate for you
When seriously considering a major remodel, it’s important not only to get quotes, but to get the right kind of quotes. It is in your absolute best interest to get a complete design and detailed scope of work before proceeding to hire anyone for the construction of the job. For big projects in particular, the more detail in the estimate, the better. This will protect you as the client and prevent any instances of “oh, that part wasn’t included” to be rattled off by the contractor half-way through construction!
As a design-build firm, our process is structured to provide a realistic, honest price quote and design to our clients up-front, based on the specific scope of work and their selected materials. Our floor plans and vivid 3-D renderings allow us to provide a clear visual of the aesthetic side of the project, while the detailed scope of work and budget worksheet explain each step of construction and help you understand the costs involved. Of course, if you still want to get bids from other contractors, you are more than welcome to do so. Having the plans and scope of work already prepared makes it a lot easier on you, and also ensures all the contractors you interview will be bidding the exact same project – nothing left out or misinterpreted!
Before you jump into a major home remodeling project, take your time to prepare and determine your ideal budget. It might feel overwhelming, especially if you have a large-scale project to tackle, but following these three steps will put you in the best possible mindset to make the right decisions. Our team is more than happy to chat with you about this further – with over 35 years completing successful remodels, we are confident we can help with yours! Contact us today for more information!
The Medford Design-Build Team