• Meghan Turner-Patel

10 Ways to Save Money on a Home Remodel

Updated: Jul 16, 2019


A Los Angeles Kitchen Remodel by South Land Remodeling

Homeowners love saving money, especially when it comes to renovation costs. Part of what makes remodeling your house – especially the kitchen and bathrooms – so appealing is it can boost equity (hello, free money!). But overspending can bury that equity in a hole deeper than your home’s foundation.


When clients hire us at South Land Remodeling, we understand saving cash is a concern they all share. We don’t take this lightly and are happy to help. The good news is there are many ways to save cost on a remodel – even when hiring a contractor like us to do the job for you.


Here are some our of top tips to save on home improvements, without sacrificing style, sanity and safety.


Compare Quotes from Various Contractors

We recommend getting at least three quotes from licensed, insured contractors. If a general contractor doesn’t do electrical or plumbing on his/her own, then get at least three quotes from those pros as well. Finding a trustworthy, quality contractor can be tough, but research and in-person meetings will help safeguard you and your home.


Set a Remodeling Budget

And stick to it! If fact, it’s a good idea to be conservative here and make a detailed plan. Unexpected expenses and issues can arise, such as water damage, code compliance, mold, permitting, etc., so leave some room in your budget for unforeseen costs. It’s also important to account for all the “little things” that go into a remodel because they quickly add up. This could include knobs and handles, fixtures, cans of paint, paint brushes, plumbing supplies, extra tile (in case of breakage), furniture, décor, etc.


Consider the Time of Year

Depending on where you live, seasonality can save money on your labor costs. Winter is often a less busy time of year, so some contractors lower their rates and have more flexibility in their schedule to start your remodeling project sooner than later.


Shop Wisely

You work hard for your dollars, and every penny counts, right? So, there’s no need to spend extra money on items that don’t require it. Here are some cost-saving shopping techniques worth exploring:

  • Discount suppliers for flooring, cabinetry, tile and countertops

  • The clearance section of any store, from big box to boutique shops

  • Seasonal sales, particularly around Black Friday, July 4th and Labor Day. Sign up for stores’ and suppliers’ email newsletter to keep a watchful eye on promotions

  • Online shopping at stores like Home Depot and Lowes. It can offer a much bigger selection and price range than you can find at the store

  • Vintage, used and refurbished items, like lighting, fixtures, hardware, vanities and furniture

  • Steep discounts on barely damaged appliances. Sometimes a tiny scratch and dent on a hidden surface is enough for a store to slash the price of an expensive appliance

  • Finishes like hardwood flooring and Carrara marble come at a premium. Explore options like luxury vinyl and quartz countertops, which offer a very similar look (and more durability) for significantly less

Reuse Wood Elements

You’d be shocked by what a new stain or coat of paint can do for hardwood floors and cabinets. These aren’t cheap materials, so before discarding them, talk to your general contractor about ways to reuse them. For cabinets, you also could add a new door, either wood or glass, to give it a totally new look for much less than the cost to buy and install anew.


Don’t Move Plumbing & Electrical

Keeping the same footprint, plumbing and wiring in a room can save a lot, especially for a kitchen remodel. This prevents the contractor from having to redesign and reconfigure everything in the space – which, in turn, also means you’ll spend less on additional cabinetry, tile, countertops and flooring to fill extra square footage.


Sell What You’re Replacing

This tip is doubly helpful: It offsets some cost and aids Mother Nature by preventing unnecessary stuff from going in a landfill. Frankly, it’s amazing what people buy off resale websites because these sites make it so easy and affordable to do so. If you’re replacing anything from chandeliers to hardware to cabinets, you can likely sell the old ones on Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, Letgo, eBay and more.


Paint Walls Yourself

While taping and painting a room isn’t be the most fun task, it will cut cost on labor. Just be careful not to splatter paint on any of your brand-new finishes and fixtures!


Tile the Backsplash Yourself

Cutting and installing new tile might sound intimidating, but most backsplashes are a relatively small surface area. So, prepping and laying tile here is a manageable weekend job that can save hundreds. We recommend taking a free class at a local hardware store or watching a few YouTube videos to learn how.


Hire an Interior Designer

Okay, this might sound counterproductive, but hear us out. Some general contractors, like South Land Remodeling, offer built-in design services. If your contractor doesn’t, a third-party interior designer can save significant time in construction delays because you won’t be spending your time Pinning and shopping millions of design possibilities. Also, he or she can ensure you stick to your budget on all design choices, while giving you access to their designer discounts on furniture, décor, material and fixtures.


For Your Safety, We Do Not Recommend:

  • Doing Demolition Yourself

  • Not Hiring a Professional, Licensed Electrician

  • Not Hiring a Professional, Licensed Plumber

  • Lifting and Installing Heavy Objects Yourself (i.e cabinets, countertops)


Looking to do a home renovation in Los Angeles? Contact South Land Remodeling today for a free quote.


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