It is scary how quickly a budget can get out of control when you are remodeling your kitchen. Throw in the emotions that well all feel during projects like this, and you have a recipe for disaster.
With that firmly in mind, it makes sense to put budgeting at the top of the list of initial researching. Planning out a realisitic budget is the first step in avoiding costly mistakes when renovation is underway.
With tools like the internet and personal computers, budget planning is easier than ever. Here are a few things to keep in mind as you begin to plan out your kitchen renovations:
Expect the unexpected: You wouldn´t believe the things you may uncover.
When I was a real estate agent, two home inspections out of there would reveal a defect that current owner had no idea about.
Ugly things like powder post beetles, rotted sill plates , and termite damage to structural beams.
Keep this in mind. When things start getting pulled out, you never know what you´ll find. Plan for this in your budget. THe older the house, the more to budget for the unexpected.
Also, changes you decide to make mid renovation will have a cost. Plan now to want to change your mind in the future.
Materials will be your most variable expense. Be cost conscious, but dont cut corners if you want the work to last.
Don´t risk having your cabinets fall apart in 2 years to save a couple of hundred dollars. Still, be aware that material selection is where must of your expense (and options) are.
The average American moves every 7 years. If you think you may sell in less than 10 years, you should consider how much value the kitchen remodel will add.
Any money you sink into improving beyond the value added will come out of your equity when you sell.But of course, comfort is important and it has a value as well.
Just make sure to balance the desire to be comfortable with the return you hope to see in the future when you sell.
Also, I should remind you that a buyer doesn´t care what you paid. It only matters what the improvement is worth to the buyer.
Track Your Expenses
Just like a personal budget, you want to track your spending often and with dilligence. Using an Excel spreadsheet is a great way to keep track of expenses, as well as the project timeline.
As Peter Drucker says “What gets measured gets managed”. The sooner you know that you are heading off budget, the faster you can change course.