Home Remodeling Tips

Home Remodeling Tips

Due diligence of planning, research, and hands on involvement of a house renovation, or even a room remodel can save hundreds, if not thousands of dollars.  These simple organization tips and money-saving ideas will guarantee a successful remodel without breaking the bank, or better yet, be under budget.

Determine Your Goal

Start by compiling ideas, written lists, and online visual compilations of what you need, want and styles you like. Maybe it’s a kitchen makeover, bathroom addition, or expanding your home’s square footage.  Perhaps it’s a full gut job and wanting to start from scratch. This preparation doesn’t cost a cent but starts the beginning of creating your budget and staying on track to a triumphant remodel.

Hire a Contractor

Once you have an idea of what you want to accomplish it’s time to hire a contractor.  Ask friends and family for contractor recommendations. Check in with the National Association of the Remodeling Industry. Your city building inspectors are an excellent resource, they know which licensed contractors meet code requirements on a regular basis.  Visit your local PARR Lumber.  They work with contractors constantly and can also give qualified recommendations.

Have a phone interview with at least three contractors and if you’re satisfied with how they answered your questions, request a face-to-face interview. Ask to speak to their prior customers and visit current job sites to see if the environment is clean and safe and how they interact with the homeowners.

Bids and Budget

It’s crucial to acquire multiple bids for your remodel. The more you share, the more concise the bid will be.  If you’re working with an architect, share the blueprints.  Any product or materials you know you’ll want to use, communicate that too.  Bids should precisely spell out what will be done. Cost of materials, breakdown of labor costs, mark ups, start date and remodel completion should all be included.  Comparing bids will also help guide you towards a budget you can work with.

Communication is Key

A conscience contractor wants to know exactly what you want and the best way to accomplish that is to put it in writing.   The contractor will do everything they have control over to meet these goals.  But remember to be flexible and mentally prepared for situations to arise. Weather, inventory delays, obtaining permits and inspections, surprises behind walls, for example, dry rot or outdated electrical, all can slow the remodel process. Most importantly, be available to answer questions, enjoy the process of remodeling and working with your contractor.

Stick to the Plan

One of the quickest ways to blow your budget is to change your mind midstream more than once.  In the world of construction there’s a term for that, it’s called a “change order”, meaning, cost more.  Not because the contractor is trying to take advantage of you, rather the scope of work has changed.  Adding more electrical outlets, different cabinetry color after they’ve already been painted, or opening a wall that wasn’t part of the floor plan, creates a domino effect of delays and costs.  Hence the importance of planning ahead, staying on budget, and avoid going rouge from your original design.

Roll up your Sleeves

If you consider yourself handy around the house, have the proper tools, don’t mind getting dirty and have the time to put in the hours, you can save a big chunk of cash by doing many tasks yourself or at least, help out. Scheduling subcontractors, demo or deconstruction, ordering and picking up materials and painting are simple ways to save.  Even making the run to the dump or recycling center on your own dime is cheaper than having a contractor charge you time and labor to do it.

Keep Plumbing in Place

Plumbing costs for a remodel can add up fast.  If it’s doable, keep sinks, appliances, toilets, and tub/shower within the original floor plan, or close by.  Labor costs for removing old parts, rerouting water lines, plus addition materials can easily double or triple the budget.  But don’t let it a poor floorplan sway your decision to create your spa bath or dream kitchen.  Budget for the extra costs and additional time needed to design, develop, and build these spaces.

Stock Up Early

Shop before you need to shop.  Some of the best bargains are found when you’re not looking. Browse online seasonal deals and close out inventory. Inquire at your favorite stores when they have blowout sales.  Contractors and vendors always have extra product from previous jobs, and many are willing to sell their building materials for a deep discount.  Best to buy early and store it away.  When materials and product are already onsite, delays are kept at a minimal and the stress level are lowered drastically.

Leftovers and Second Hand

Don’t be shy to stop at thrift stores and salvage yards. And once you find one you like, be a frequent shopper.  Inventory is constantly changing, and merchandise is a fraction of its retail price. Even brand new and discontinued building materials stock shelves.  So, check your wish list and if you see something that’s on the list and you like it, buy it.  If there’s slight hesitation, ask about the return policy. Most locations will give store credit if you return your purchase. One of the best places to shop for everything remodel related are the Habitat for Humanity ReStores.  Not only will you save money, your purchase decreases landfill waste and the sales of donated items helps Habitat for Humanity repair and build affordable homes for those in your community.

Go Where the Builders Go

A no brainer way to save money, time and check off the long list of materials needed for your remodeling project is to one stop shop at PARR Lumber. Experts at the PARR Design Centers and lumber yards can help you select all types of wood for framing, finish carpentry, flooring, doors, windows, countertops, cabinetry, hardware and let’s not forget tools.  The list goes on and on. And with 47 locations in Oregon and Washington and the 16th largest residential building supplies dealer in the United States, PARR Lumber is the supplier of choice. https://parr.com/

Check out episode 1: 100+ Year Old Home Remodel in McMinnville, Oregon, of our new series PARR Weekend Warriors, Redo with Q. Corey Valdez and Tony Cookston tours homeowner, Shannon Quimby’s old bungalow that’s in need of a dire remodel.

Subscribe and follow our remodeling journey, Hoffs Homestead; a community of homes new and old on PARR Weekend Warriors, Redo with Q YouTube channel. https://www.youtube.com/@parrlumber

Learn more about Shannon Quimby

Learn more about PARR Weekend Warriors