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Renovating your Dream Home: a Budgeting Guide to Remodel Success

We are close to the finish line on our current remodel, and one common theme keeps coming up in my Tik Tok and Instagram comments: Budgeting. "How much should we budget for our kitchen?" "How do you decide what to budget?". It's one thing to dream up a gorgeous remodel, and another to successfully budget for a home renovation. Fear not, fellow dreamers, because I've got you covered with some go-to tips (as well as a customizable Renovation Budget Workbook) to make your home remodel a breeze!

How to budget for a home renovation

  1. Assess Your Goals: Before embarking on any renovation project, take a moment to clarify your goals. What do you hope to achieve with the renovation? Identifying your priorities will help you allocate your budget more effectively. Whether it's enhancing functionality, increasing energy efficiency, or simply upgrading aesthetics, knowing your goals will guide your spending decisions.

  2. Research and Get Quotes: Knowledge is power, especially when it comes to budgeting for home renovations. Do your research on the materials, labor costs, and any hidden expenses associated with your project. Don't hesitate to reach out to contractors and get detailed quotes. Having a clear understanding of the potential costs will prevent unpleasant surprises down the road.

  3. Establish a Realistic Budget: Once you have a grasp of the potential costs, it's time to set a realistic budget. Consider using my Renovation Budget Workbook to outlining all anticipated expenses, including materials and labor. Be realistic about what you can afford, and remember that unexpected expenses may (and most likely will... ask me how I know) arise, so it's wise to set aside a buffer.

  4. Prioritize Your Renovation Wish List: Chances are, you have a laundry list of renovation ideas. However, not all projects are created equal, and some may have a higher impact on your daily life or property value. Prioritize your wish list based on your goals and budget constraints. This ensures that you tackle the most crucial projects first, even if it means postponing others to a later date.

  5. DIY vs. Professional Help: Consider your skill level and the complexity of the project when deciding whether to DIY or hire professionals. While taking the DIY route can save money, it's essential to be realistic about your abilities. Some projects may require the expertise of a professional to avoid costly mistakes in the long run.

  1. Explore Financing Options: If your dream renovation exceeds your current budget, don't lose hope. Explore financing options such as home equity loans, personal loans, or government grants. Be sure to understand the terms and interest rates associated with each option, and choose the one that aligns with your financial goals.

  2. Keep an Eye on Trends, but Don't Follow Blindly: Trends come and go, and it's tempting to incorporate the latest styles into your renovation. However, it's essential to strike a balance between timeless design and current trends. Opt for classic elements that stand the test of time, adding trendy touches through easily replaceable items like decor and accessories. Pinterest is an amazing resource for finding timeless finish options that match your style.

We have learned so much in our journey from new home build to major fixer upper to not so major but still overhaul everything fixer upper. It can be such a stressful ordeal, but so completely rewarding. One of the biggest ways we managed stress was making sure we followed our budget carefully. We learned the hard way to allocate extra money for surprises (like a Radon pump and extensive plumbing excavation in our first fixer upper) and choose finishes based on the allocated money (that marble slab is GORGEOUS but you may need to find a quartzite slab with a similar vibe to save $$$). Check out my Renovation Budget Workbook – a very simple (multi-use and customizable) way to track your finances to stay in budget on your remodel.

Happy renovating, dreamers!



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