As any homeowner or contractor who has undertaken a home building/renovation project knows, construction costs can add up quickly. Whether you’re building a new home from scratch, adding on a house extension, or remodeling a room, here are 4 top tips to help you cut costs on your next home building project.
1. Plan ahead.
One of the first and most important steps you should take is to consult with your local planning department to determine what you can and cannot do, as well as which permits are required (if any) for your project. Secondly, be sure to submit all your required paperwork and permits ahead of time. This will help you avoid costly building delays in getting your plans approved.Creating a detailed budget is another key step in planning ahead that will help you side-step overspending and running out of money before your project is completed. In addition, as you work on the design plans for your building project, think about how different design choices will impact your labor costs. This would include, for example, centralizing the plumbing areas (e.g., kitchen, bathrooms, and laundry room) and grouping utility connections in locations that are easy to access.
Determine early on what’s most important for the project—which items you want to splurge on and where compromises on more budget-friendly choices can be made. As priorities are set, be sure to strike a balance between high-end and low-end materials to avoid extremes in materials and design.If you could use some help prioritizing and keeping track of each project task while also managing your budget, download this free project planning worksheet from P.E. For Hire.
3. Source materials and search for off-price deals.
Although it may take some time and effort, sourcing your materials is an effective tactic for trimming the costs on your next home building or remodeling project. Here are some ways to source materials and save:
- Buy wholesale versus retail whenever possible.
- Shop around at local home improvement stores and online (e.g., Amazon.com), as well as at Habitat for Humanity ReStores that frequently sell both gently-used items and new high-quality items including doors, shelves, windows, and light fixtures.
- Use building materials and products that are discounted because they have minor imperfections, are remnants, or are floor models.
- Use reclaimed materials when appropriate, which you can find in local salvage yards and at PlanetReuse, the online marketplace for reused and reclaimed building materials.
4. Bid out your home building project’s subcontractor jobs, including engineers.
This is a great way to help you potentially save thousands of dollars on your home remodeling and building projects. For example, it’s a good idea to solicit at least 3 bids for each construction division that’s involved with your project.
Before you spend your day on the phone looking for an affordable residential structural engineer or searching online for a “civil engineer near me,” try P.E. For Hire (PEforHire.com). It can help you save money and time. Simply post your project—for free—at PEforHire.com and you’ll receive proposals online from our extensive, nationwide pool of licensed professional engineers.
Another important advantage of working with P.E. For Hire is that there are no middle men—you’ll have direct contact with the engineers via instant messaging.
Got questions about how to find the licensed professional engineer that’s right for your next home building or remodeling project? Visit the P.E. For Hire website at www.peforhire.com and we’ll get you started today!