Whether it’s the installation of a swimming pool to add value to an investment, or simply extending a couple of rooms to make space or a growing family, every homeowner will face a point when they wish to work on their property. Soon after, one realises that the process can be arduous and expensive, due to the usually large scope and long list of details that need sorting; what’s the best way to keep your renovation within budget?
Start off by consulting friends or acquaintances with prior experience. If you don’t know any, try a local discussion forum on the Internet. What was the sort of work they did, and who did they hire? Ask also for any tips or tricks they might have. Their work doesn’t necessarily have to be the same sort you wish to do; you can gain useful insights such as the trustworthiness of the tradespeople, whether or not a type of material might be in shortage, and how best to ask for a quote.
Shop wide, shop deep
On the subject of quotes: don’t be afraid to ask! Look up builders in your area, explain to them what exactly you’d like done, and ask how much it might be. Don’t just ask for labor costs, but also for the price of materials, waste disposal, and even legal paperwork if relevant. Of course this means you’ll have to think through what exactly it is you want, and possibly do some measuring beforehand. However, the work will pay off in a more accurate estimate.
Negotiate and finalise
Once you’ve gotten your quotes, you can bargain: show them what their competitors are offering, and ask why their costs are higher or lower. While you might be able to get an extra item or two out of it, the key purpose isn’t to get a lower price, but to get a more thorough idea of what each company offers, via the perspective of an experienced party.
Saving money on property work is not so much about finding bargains as it is avoiding pitfalls. The best way to do that is to be smart, and be educated about your options, and these basic steps help you achieve precisely that.