If you walk around your house looking for things that need to be fixed and try to find areas that could do with some improvement, chances are you’ll wind up with a long list of project ideas.While some projects are going to be more affordable than others, there are usually ways to save on the cost of tools, materials, and labour. The first step you should take to reduce the overall project cost is to set a predefined budget.Once you’ve decided on an amount that you’re willing to spend, there’s no need to spend every penny of those allocated funds. Instead, try using the following seven tips to save money on upcoming home improvement projects:
1. Take Advantage of Discounts and Vouchers
If you’re going to be buying materials online, there’s a good chance that one of the shops that carries the materials you need will allow you to save money through coupons or voucher codes. You can check out Voucher Empire (VE) to learn more about the various ways you can save money using this method, which is useful even beyond the scope of home improvement.
In many cases, you can save as much as 20% to 40% or more on purchases just by using the right voucher. There are also web browsing extensions that will help you find the right codes automatically, although it may be better to manually browse through the voucher offers on sites like VE to select the most applicable savings for your transaction.
2. Use Re-Purposed Materials
Oftentimes, you can find low-cost or even free materials through local classified ads or marketplaces on social networking sites like Facebook. Purchasing used or excess materials directly from other homeowners and contractors can help you save money on the total cost.
However, if you’re in need of specific materials, you might not be able to find exactly what you’re looking for on the second-hand market. Still, you might as well check to see if someone has what you need in your area.
3. Opt for the DIY Route Instead of Paid Labour
While there are some jobs that are better left to the pros, most home improvement projects can be completed by anyone with decent handy skills and basic tools. If it’s going to be something simple like changing a bathroom sink or installing new curtains, there’s no need to bring in hired help.
Look for relevant DIY tutorials and guides before you resort to paying someone else inflated labour rates. In general, it’s common for homeowners to pay more for labour than the actual materials themselves.
4. Shop Around Online
Did you know that the majority of people who shop online are not getting the lowest possible retail price for the items they’re purchasing? In fact, marketing studies have proven that most online transactions can be reduced by a factor of at least 5% to 20% just by buying from a different source.
Use shopping comparison sites and manual catalogue browsing to find the lowest possible price for the materials you’re buying. Keep in mind that you’ll often get what you pay for, so be sure to compare product specifications to ensure you’re not sacrificing quality for price.
5. Look for Cheaper Alternative Projects
Maybe you’ve decided you’re going to add a room to your home and you’re prepared to spend an exuberant amount to get it done. What if you could add the same amount of indoor square footage just by converting an external area of your home into a bedroom or studio?
This is just one example of how you may be able to find an alternative project that will serve the same purpose as the more expensive idea that you originally had in mind. After examining your options, you might even find that you want to abandon your current project for something entirely new that will add value to your home at a much lower cost.
6. Use Store Credit Cards
Most building supply and hardware stores will offer a retail store credit card that you can use to gain access to ongoing discounts. If you have decent credit, it would make sense to take advantage of such cardholder benefits, especially if you plan on doing more home improvement projects in the future.
Discounts of 10% or more are commonly provided exclusively to rewards members, and by using your card frequently, you can build up points that can be redeemed later for additional discounts and deals.
7. Buy Materials Using Payment Plans
Just as most hardware stores offer credit cards, they also usually let you apply for payment plans when you make an order online. This usually means you can split the cost of materials into payments across a period of 3 months, 6 months, or 12 months. Taking this approach can effectively reduce the cost of materials to a small down payment followed by a period of low monthly payments.
For a homeowner with decent credit and the ability to reliably make repayments, opting for a payment plan is typically the most feasible way to complete larger projects that would otherwise be prohibitively expensive.
There’s Always a Way to Pay Less
Regardless of what kind of home improvement project you’re planning on carrying out, there are probably several ways you can cut costs without sacrificing the quality of the finished results.
Fortunately, in today’s competitive market, there are usually off-brand and aftermarket alternatives available for every product, and the quality of these substitutes is often comparable to the premium option. With a thorough comparison of product specifications and reviews, you can confidently make purchases knowing that you saved money without taking the risk of buying an unreliable product.
Many homeowners make the mistake of meeting or exceeding their budget simply because they can. Why not make an effort to minimise the project cost so you can put those saved funds towards other property enhancements? Once you’ve completed one project satisfactorily, you’ll probably want to embark on a home improvement adventure again in the future, so it will help to have those savings set aside and ready for the next project.