Home additions are a great way to add significant living and entertaining space without spending the money on a move or a new home. Pre-existing structures have a great deal of potential, and sometimes homeowners ignore that in lieu of a brand-new build. While having the work already done for you is appealing, sometimes you just don’t want to leave the memories you already built in a home—which is why a home addition can be a great choice for a homeowner that is looking to create more space in a home they already love. Here are some tips on how to keep costs of your new home addition low:
- Get more than one bid.
Finding the right builder or contractor can be the best decision you ever make or the worst choice of your life. You’ll want to accurately interview and talk to whichever professional you plan to hire. Ask to see some of their other projects so you can get a sense of what they have worked on previously and what the result of those projects was. If you’re unsure of where to find licensed professionals, ask friends and family or look no further than the internet. There are multitudes of websites specifically geared toward helping homeowners find licensed professionals for home additions or other renovation projects.
Once you have a couple of professionals you would consider working with, it’s time to get bids for your project. Getting those bids from more than one contractor is a fantastic idea. If one bid is significantly lower than the others, find out why. If one contractor is cutting corners and using cheaper material, find out before the project is completed. Unless you specify every little detail of the project, you could end up spending more money than you should. To help keep your budget in check, it would be a good idea to develop a detail sheet that lists everything you want to be included in the bid, right down to the brands of materials. This way everything is put on the table, and there is no confusion about what you want.
- Reuse, recycle.
Anytime you can reuse materials, do it. It cuts cost, and it recycles the items you already have. It doesn’t have to be big-ticket items. It could be a sink, an old cabinet that’s transformed into a sink basin, doors, flooring, windows—anything you can reuse that will enhance your space and save you money. Of course, you don’t have to reuse items if your budget allows for newer ones, but it’s definitely something to consider if you want to save money in places that won’t affect overall design of the new space.
Something else to consider is pre-fab designs or rooms that come completed to your home. The allure of pre-fab designs is that you can get the quality and price advantage along with faster build times. Speed is particularly valuable when building modular home additions because the construction will temporarily disrupt your family’s life, especially if you remain in your home while the work is in progress.
- Cost-conscious design.
The design is just as important for the overall project as the construction of the addition. The design is where a lot of money can be spent, just as much or more than the building of the structure itself. Items such as furniture, flooring, lighting, paint colors, tile, and window treatments are all additional elements that can quickly add up. When planning the design, try to keep in mind things that you already know that can be reused, or things that are must-haves. This way you can plan around those more expensive items and cut cost in other places.
Don’t buy home décor items on a whim. For furniture and investment pieces, you will save more money buying quality pieces that last versus cheaper pieces that may need to be replaced more frequently. Think about comparing prices, shopping deals, and clearance sales. You could potentially get to have your cake and eat it too if you are able to get the furniture pieces you want for great sale prices. Saving you money and still giving you great pieces.