Many of us will look for ways to cut costs when renovating our home, but beware – some cheap renovation tactics could cost you more in the long run. Here are a few budget remodelling methods that should be avoided.
Energy-hungry kitchen appliances
Whilst you can find many affordable appliances such as refrigerators and ovens and washing machines, you should always look into exactly why they’re selling for so cheap. Cheap appliances may not only be unreliable – they could be bad for your energy consumption. Energy-efficient appliances are often marked with an Energy Star. Some of these appliances may come at a premium price, but you could end up spending less in the long run on gas and electricity.
A lot of home improvements can have a negative effect on your energy consumption such as choosing single-glazed windows over double-glazed ones or constructing uninsulated walls. Consider the extra costs of going sustainable and the effect on your bills that it could have in the future.
There are many overpriced materials out there such as stone countertop materials and flooring woods that can be easily replicated with cheaper imitation materials. In some cases, lower quality alternatives may not make much of a difference to practicality, such as a plastic countertop sprayed with granite-paint to look like stone – it may not have the actual toughness of granite but it serves its aesthetic purpose. However, you should be careful of structural materials such as brick or steel. When looking at the cost of metal buildings, choosing a pricier and better quality steel could make a huge difference, providing more structural integrity and staying more resilient against harsh weather. Consider this if building an extension.
Dangerous DIY jobs
Going DIY is a great way to save costs. However, you should be cautious of taking on some jobs yourself. Electrics and plumbing can often be best left in the hands of a professional. Faulty wiring or a badly-connected pipe could result in a leak that could turn into a fire. Knocking down walls is another job that should be left to the professionals. Even if you’re not knocking down a load bearing wall, the structural integrity of your home could be compromised by a mistake, plus you need to be wary of wiring and pipes within the walls. Instead, try to take on low risk jobs when going DIY. Painting, tiling, fitting carpets and putting up cabinets/shelves are generally a low-risk job that can be good for those on a tight budget.
Easy ‘get-out’ repairs
When making repairs to your home, don’t always opt for the easiest and most convenient route – you may simply be masking the problem allowing it to develop further. This could include covering cracks in pipes with duct tape or filling in a large crack in the wall with caulk. Paying a little more to get the issue addressed there and then could stop a huge and expensive disaster later down the road. A surveyor should be able to come in and assess the severity of such a crack.
Devaluing design choices
There are lots of design choices that can harm your property’s value. These are generally controversial décor choices such as bright pink walls and chessboard kitchen tiles that some may find too garish. However, there can be other renovation ideas which may seem like a cheap solution at the time, but could in fact cause your home to massively to drop in value.
For example, you should never get rid of an extra bedroom. Many people seeking a home office may decide to use a spare bedroom for such a purpose rather than building an extension or converting a garage. This can be a sensible option, providing that you don’t compromise the room’s function as a bedroom – for example fitting in a bulky fixed desk or fixed shelves, which make it impossible to fit a bed into the room.
Similarly, you shouldn’t combine two bedrooms to make one big room. Knocking down a wall might seem cheaper and more practical than building an extension, but when you come to sell the property it will be devalued for having one less bedroom.