When it comes to renovating homes, three of the top questions we are asked are.
1. How much will it cost?
2. How long will it take? And
3. When can you start?
And if we were to narrow those questions down even further. How much will it cost is by far the most commonly asked question. Because everyone is on a budget. No one has an endless supply of cash that we can pour into renovating and creating the perfect home.
So let’s talk renovation budget. Let’s talk specifically about tips and tricks that will help you manage the budget for your home reno.
Tip #1 Know your renovation budget and stick to it.
Creating a renovation budget and sticking to it is one of the simplest ways to manage your money on a home renovation. It’s definitely not an area where you want to be ‘winging it’. But alarmingly, a lot of people do… Just like they do with household budgets.
Initially, it can be hard to put together a renovation budget, especially if you don’t know how much each element of your home renovation is going to cost. But don’t worry, this is easy to navigate. Once you start getting an idea of what stages of the build are likely to cost and how much materials and fixtures are, then you can start to put together a budget and work out your actual renovation costs.
As a guide, we have gone through the average costs of renovating along with the details of renovation costs here to give you a head start.
Tip #2 Understand the renovation process
Renovation budgets can quickly blow out through renovation mistakes. And a lot of renovation mistakes are made simply by not understanding the process.
For example, Many renovators will speak to an architect or building designer first before speaking to the builder and before you know it, they have some amazing plans drawn up for their ideal renovation, but the cost to build these plans is so far over budget that the plans need to be amended or scrapped altogether.
If you understand the renovation process and realise the importance of speaking to a builder early in your renovation journey, expensive mistakes like the one outlined above can be avoided. A mistake like that could cost anywhere in the vicinity of $10,000. That’s going to make a huge dent in the renovation budget.
Tip #3 Ask and receive full transparency on the renovation quotes
Renovation quotes are another area where the renovation budget can be impacted.
If you are not asking for or receiving full transparency and a complete breakdown of costs in your renovation quotes from the builder, then your renovation budget is at risk.
Some builders will only quote the bare bones of your project to keep the overall price low and therefore more appealing. While others will price lump sums for various stages.
Why does this put your renovation budget at risk? Because if the project is not fully itemised and quoted accurately from the beginning, costs are bound to blow out in variations throughout the build. It’s not uncommon for renovation projects that are quoted in this way to end up going way over budget.
To avoid this, ask for full transparency with your renovation quotes and receive a fully itemised breakdown of every element of your project so you are aware of all costs upfront.
Tip #4 Take responsibility for your renovation budget
Any good renovation builder will be closely monitoring and managing your renovation project costs from day one. But this doesn’t mean you are off the hook with responsibility. You still need to be aware and in control of your renovation budget at all times.
When sourcing quotes from builders for your project, ask them what information you receive regarding the budget throughout the project. Some builders will offer full transparency with online tracking so you can monitor the budget the entire way through. Other builders offer none of this, and it’s on you to keep a record of what is being spent at any given time.
Tip #5 Lean on the experts to help compile your renovation budget
Renovation budgets can be completely overwhelming for homeowners simply because they don’t know where to start. And that’s okay. You’re not a building expert so you are not expected to know what things cost.
This is where it pays to have quality experts guiding you through the renovation process and helping you understand what is needed to complete your renovation and how much everything will cost. Not only will your builder and other building experts help educate you on the renovation costs, they can also help you avoid any costly oversights that you simply didn’t consider.
Remember to ask as many questions as you can to get as much information as you need in order to get a firm understanding of your renovation costs.
Tip #6 Consider alternatives
All good budgets can quickly blow out simply by the choices we make. Renovation budgets are no different.
The materials we select, the products we choose and the fixtures we want can all have an impact on the budget. Tiles for example can vary in price considerably. So can tapware. And the same can be said for appliances and materials we use. In fact, nearly every facet of a home renovation comes in choices ranging from standard to designer, with pricing to match.
Stone benchtops vary in price depending on the finish and colour you select. Appliances can range from a builder’s standard range. Even choosing between gas or electric can make a difference to both the renovation budget and the long term household running costs.
So, this is either good or bad news depending on the way you look at it. Good news if you are on a strict budget as there are likely to be more affordable alternatives for you to choose from. Bad news for your budget if you have your heart set on certain items and they are not cheap.
It’s always worthwhile to consider alternatives.
Tip #7 Always have a buffer
Our final tip is one that you should consider in any budget, whether it’s a home budget or a renovation budget… Always have a buffer.
Having a contingency up your sleeve in your renovation budget will help give you peace of mind. Knowing that you have a buffer in place should extra expenses arise during your renovation can make a huge difference to your stress levels.
Renovation budgets can be easy to manage
Renovation budgets can be relatively easy to compile and manage. The key is to have the right information at hand, know all the details of your renovation and have good experts helping guide you through the process. With all these things, you shouldn’t have any trouble sticking to your renovation budget.
Get in touch if you want assistance or more information on how to put together your renovation budget.