Expert Awards

TS04-26

Home Expert Awards: Cutting Costs

Remodeling or building a home is expensive–there’s no way around that. If you want things done well, you have to spend money for a quality product. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t be budget-conscious and look for ways to save without compromising quality. To help homeowners figure out where it’s safe to cut financial corners, and where you should just absorb the cost, we asked our home industry experts for their advice. Here are some of their top comments, and some advice that can help you save money without cutting too many corners.

How can remodeling homeowners cut costs without cutting corners?

Where do you most often find wiggle room in your clients’ budgets?

Are there any projects that you consistently see homeowners paying too much for?

What projects can be safely done at cut-rate prices, and which should never be compromised on?

Most Inspiring

During a home remodel, there are certain areas where making changes will really affect the cost. With a bathroom or kitchen remodeling project, for instance, sticking with the existing layout is one way to reduce costs where changes may not be 100% necessary. Moving the location of a sink or a toilet requires a great deal of plumbing work, and prices will reflect that. read more

Gillece Services really got us thinking with this comment, because it highlights how important it is to be flexible in your remodeling plan if you want to save money. Sure, it might be nice to have the new bathroom on the other side of the house, but is it worth the extra cost of moving the plumbing? These are the kinds of things that can save a lot of money without compromising the final product. Quality work doesn't have to mean spending a fortune. Sometimes it just means thinking things through when making your designs.

eLocal Expert Network

Most Creative

The best place to start is planning. A well planned project saves everyone time. Start with the basics. Who needs what, when, where, and for how long? ... By far, the worse time waster is indecision. There is nothing worse than paying skilled people to stand around waiting on a small decision, but I see it all the time. read more

Josh's advice is something very few people think about. Of course you want to hire skilled professionals to do your work, but their time is worth money. Knowing what you want and figuring out how to get there before bringing in the expensive labor can save you a ton of money before you've even started, and you don't have to compromise quality anywhere. Remember: time is money.

eLocal Expert Network

Most Insightful

Interior designers...can also, depending upon the designer, provide incredible discounts on items for the home.

At times, clients have called me when it’s “too late” and they’ve already purchased kitchen cabinetry, flooring, tile and other permanent fixtures. If they had hired me to shop with them, they could have saved thousands and in many cases, tens of thousands, which leaves a nice budget for furniture, window treatments and accessories. read more

Jennifer suggests another resource that homeowners don't realize they have when it comes to saving money: the professionals they hired. People who work in the home improvement business have been around a while, and they know where all the local deals are, and how to save money. When in doubt, ask the advice of the experts you hired! That's what they're there for.

eLocal Expert Network

Most Articulate

If there is one area where we recommend buyers do not cut corners, it is building the structure of the home. Even with smaller budgets, it is important to invest in quality roofing and structural materials. By avoiding constant and costly repairs, this investment will undoubtedly pay off in the long run. read more

Grand View Builders lays the issue out clearly with this simple rule of thumb: if it's structural, don't skimp. Saving money in the short term can often lead to more expensive fixes in the long run, which is both a hassle and a pain to your wallet. It's important to keep in mind not only the savings you're getting now, but also those waiting in the future. Apparent price is not the only consideration.

eLocal Expert Network

Most Informative

Buy as much as you can on sale, with discount coupons, etc. Many materials–brick, stone, lumber, etc. can be salvaged or bought from salvage companies and are often better than what is available new or as new synthetics. Frankly, many building materials, cabinets, architectural details, etc. are just thrown away or hauled to a dump when demolition or remodeling projects are being done. Always ask first, but often contractors are glad to let you haul stuff off. read more

Pablo gives some really sound advice that's relevant no matter what kind of project you're working on. Salvaging materials might be more work for you, but it can also save you a lot of money without compromising too much on quality. If you don't mind doing the legwork, a little research can mean huge savings.

eLocal Expert Network