101 DIY Guide

Do It Yourself Guide

Staying on Budget in Home Improvement Projects

Regardless of how ambitious your home improvement project may be, surprises are inevitable and it is often hard to stay within the budget you have projected. Taking a few simple precautionary steps can go a long way toward meeting problems head on and preparing for successful completion.

Supplies are often one of the biggest costs involved in home improvement projects, so plan ahead. Make a list of every item you will potentially need. This means budgeting for small items as well as large ones. Think about nails, paint scrapers, cleaning solvents, tarps, tape, measuring implements and brushes. The small things add up unexpectedly when the project gets rolling, so eliminate the stress of going over budget by planning for these items ahead of time. Write it all down and check things off as you purchase them.

There is a good chance that you have not considered all the options for vendors who supply the items that you may need. In addition to the large box-store chain suppliers, many small local vendors go out of their way to offer advice and order unique supplies you may need. In addition, planning ahead can give you the advantage of ordering needed items online, often eliminating sales taxes. Many offer free shipping, as well, so click around on various websites to see what deals may exist.

A big expense can be the equipment that you need to do a job properly. It is tempting to think that it is best to purchase these tools, and that you will use them again in the future. However, consider the option of renting equipment. Chances are that it will be years before you need to use that machine or tool again, and it could become outdated or need servicing in the meantime. Plan ahead and take advantage of specials, renting out of season, and concentrating the rental time into a two-hour segment of less, to lower rental costs. You may also want to ask around and see if you have friends or family who would gladly let you borrow what you need for a day or two.

Make all measurements before going to the outlet where you will purchase the needed supplies. You can save consider costs by knowing exactly how much you need of any particular item. On the other hand, you will not want to waste time by having to return to the store for more, often at a higher cost for smaller volumes. Avoid both of these pitfalls by measuring your space ahead of time.

If you will be using the services of contractors for all or part of your home improvement project, then consider each step of the process and determine if there are any segments that you could initiate or complete on your own. Even the smallest amounts of prep time or tying up of loose ends before completion could cut down on hourly fees charged by contractors.

Use some of the ideas here to get a head-start on keeping your projects on budget, without sacrificing quality. Your home deserves the updates you are embarking on, so take the time to plan ahead and get the most out of this important home improvement project.

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