Not a numbers person? Let EED help you understand how to budget!

Welcome back to our DIY remodel series where we share some of our greatest tips and tricks to help you have a smoother DIY renovation! This months installation is all about helping you understand and be prepared to coordinate your own budget. In our opinion, the budget is the most daunting part of any renovation. Without enough knowledge and planning, an underestimated budget can quickly be blown and the stress from being over budget can create undesired tension. Did you know that 82% of renovations go over budget? These stats could make anyone fret, but don’t worry. Elizabeth Erin Designs has a wonderful process that could help you properly plan for, and execute your home renovation while staying on budget. Feel free to check out our website to learn more about how we can help you stay on budget and achieve your vision.

The first step to creating your budget the right way is to first decide how much you are going to spend on the renovation. It is very important to do your research at this phase of your planning. If you find yourself dreaming of a full-blown renovation like the ones you see on HGTV, I am sorry to say you may be quite disappointed to discover it costs a lot more than what they show. Renovations involve many hands because they have a lot of working parts, and require various types of materials. Naturally, ALL of these things cost money, so don’t be surprised to spend a good chunk of change on your renovation. 

A good way to determine how much you are going to spend is to ask yourself these questions: Am I doing this renovation to better my experience within my home? Is the purpose of this renovation to add value to my home? Knowing the benefit of your renovation may change how much you are willing to spend on your project. Another thing to consider in the budget phase is to know your budgetary options and what kind of spending is realistic for you. Will you need a loan to complete the project, are you only using savings, or a mixture of the two? Consult with a financial advisor or loan officer to discuss the best options for your personal situation.

One of our greatest tips we have to share is to not only look at your project as a whole, but to break down each space from your project scope and assign allotments of money to each space. This will help that big picture number seem more manageable. This will also help you figure out how to budget costs per square feet on material and where you can manage to spend a little bit more. Say you are doing a main floor renovation. The renovation includes a full kitchen, powder room, main bedroom and bathroom, laundry room, and then overall cosmetic updates to the hallways and living space. On your budget sheet, you should keep track of the total cost of the entire project, but then have subcategories with each of the spaces above listed. Organization is the KEY to having a successful renovation, and that is especially true when it comes to the budget. 

Another great tip that will help save money and stay on budget is to select EVERYTHING – from appliances to the paint color, BEFORE meeting with any contractors and demo/building. You should have a list of every product you need and the cost of that product. A common mistake we see homeowners make when doing a remodel or new build project is selecting materials as they go along. This can push projects over budget and even hurt the project timeline due to lack of organization and planning. Selecting product upfront to create a cohesive design prior to the start of any renovation or new build is one of the many things that is part of the EED process. If you are feeling overwhelmed about planning your project, head to our website to set up a complimentary 30 minute consultation where we learn more about your project and how we can work together to make your vision a reality. 

Like we said before, breaking down your project into smaller pieces will help a project stay on budget, and on a strict timeline. This can also come in handy in the situation that a bid comes in over budget and an adjustment needs to be made to stay in budget. Being flexible and willing to adjust smaller, less important items, can help your renovation run smoothly. Having all of your materials selected ahead of time can also help with this. That way if you need to select a new item such as flooring, you can use the more costly product for inspiration when selecting a less expensive option. Everything will stay within budget and your vision won’t have to suffer at the expense of staying on budget.

It is also important to note how important a contingency budget is. This is a portion of money set aside to deal with any unexpected costs that may accumulate during your renovation. It is always safe be prepared, and this portion of money could save your renovation from complete disaster! For example, if you open up a wall and find out there is bad electrical that you weren’t planning on replacing, you can use this portion of your budget to fix the issue without having to compromise your end vision.

I hope you feel a little more equipped to prepare a proper budget for your renovation project! Make sure to check back next month for the next installment of our DIY Remodel Series. We will be discussing how to move forward once you have collected bids and are ready to begin your renovation. If you want more information on our residential design services, visit our website here. If you have a topic you would like us to cover in a future blog, please reach out to us via email and let us know what it is! Connect with us on Facebook and  Instagram to stay up to date with all the latest tips. Have a beautiful week and remember to never stop striving to achieve your vision!