Taking on a new home improvement project takes a lot of planning, time and most of all money. Most people do not have a bottomless budget to work with and will need to keep a close eye on costs wherever possible.
Thankfully, there are ways in which you can save some money by understanding the secret to getting the right price. We’ve put together a list of suggestions to help you get the most out of your budget, no matter how large or small, so whatever changes are being made to your home you won’t have to break the bank to finish it.
Buy your own building materials
You can’t afford to cut corners on the materials you buy for your home improvement but that doesn’t mean you can’t still save some money. If you have never purchased building materials before a good place to start is by talking to contractors about the materials required, or you can ask friends and family who may have recently completed their own projects.
If this is a little too far out of your comfort zone, you can still save money elsewhere. Those working to a tight budget can look at second hand or antique centres for decorative items. If you are renovating your kitchen or bathroom then fans and air vents are easy enough to buy on the cheap without compromising on quality.
The opportunities the internet affords us now is almost unlimited in terms of the information we need for home renovations. By using resources online you are able to not only look into the best prices available for the materials needed for the renovation, but also contact a whole range of contractors quickly and easily.
In the vast majority of cases you can get a quick overview of their competency too by reading the reviews of those who have used them previously. Researching online also allows you to understand how much the project may cost, which ensures you are not being overcharged by any contractors you may use, and most importantly, that you have enough budget to get the job done effectively.
Get a price comparison
Being able to send messages direct to traders online in a matter of minutes puts you in a position of strength. It would be easy to think that because a number of companies all provide the same service their prices will also be similar. In principle that should be the case but the reality is usually somewhat different.
Before committing to a quote you should always ensure you have at least 3 or 4 to compare and choose from. Also remember that the cheapest quote does not mean you will receive the most value in terms of quality of work and the service you receive. Get a full breakdown of costs so there are no nasty surprises later on and ask about more than just the price so you get a full understanding of how competent a company they are. And don’t be afraid to haggle or ask for a discount by using other quotes as leverage – you’ll be surprised how much money you can save!
Go national or stay local?
When it comes to the type of company you choose to hire you there are benefits to both national and local companies. Working with a national firm provides an instant level of quality assurance based on their reputation. They will probably also provide a whole range of additional features due to their size and capabilities that could prove useful. However, in many cases reputation comes with a higher price and they may prove to be a more expensive option.
Working with local tradesman enables you to invest in a local business and with a contractor that plays a vital role in helping hundreds of others in your area. Many are family businesses that have been in operation for years, developing a strong reputation for quality work at a local level. Local builders usually offer more flexibility on their availability compared to national companies who work to fixed time slots.
However, the deciding factor that might tip the scale is guarantees and warranties, which are typically longer with national companies and provide longer term protection should you need to call on them again for any problems in the future.
Learn to time your purchases
On most occasions there is no immediate rush to begin work on the changes being made to your home and it makes sense to wait for sales to become available in order to save some money. The savings made here could be significant, especially if you are you renovating a part of the home that will also require furnishing.
This doesn’t mean having to sit around waiting for months, as there are a number of sales windows throughout the year, be it before or after Christmas, Easter, summer and so on. If you know you are due to begin work on a home improvement project later in the year then plan ahead and buy your materials in the sales beforehand, storing them away to be used when you are ready.
As you can see, by utilising the tools at your disposal there are a number of ways to save money on your home improvement project. For those who are more adept with DIY, you may even decide to take it on yourself which will save even more money, although this will depend on the complexity of the job at hand. By taking a little more time and effort you will see the benefit in your bank balance once everything has been completed.