Balancing the Home Repair Budget

Balancing the Home Repair Budget

Considering current economic conditions, doing a home improvement project can be a much more affordable task than purchasing a new home. Detailed strategic planning should be completed before starting a project in an effort to avoid becoming over budget before completing the project. A budgeting worksheet can be developed or one can be downloaded from the internet for free.

Once the worksheet is in hand, a cost estimator should be put to use. This allows for the comparison of approximate costs with similar remodeling projects in your area. Jotting down notes as the research is completed on material cost helps to match ideas with available building funds. Available money-saving tips can be reviewed. All of this can help to determine if the funds on hand will cover the costs of the project. If a loan is needed, credit worthiness can be checked to determine if the credit score should be increased prior to starting the project. Get the appropriate building permits before any work is begun. It is also best to obtain the services of a licensed building design contractor to draw the plans if this is a major home improvement.

Once the decisions are made on the size of the project, then determine if it is going to be a do-it-yourself project. If so, this will help to decrease costs considerably. If professional help is going to be needed, research must be completed on who and at what cost. Determine if the homeowner will be shopping for the building materials or the professional who is going to assist with or complete the home improvement. Every aspect of the home improvement plans should be written in the cost estimator on the budget worksheet. Contracts are signed if assistance is hired.

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Even after these decisions are made the project is started some homeowners still find themselves over budget. Phases of the project need to be adjusted so that it can get back on budget. Possibly, the size of the project can be adjusted. If not, the type of building material can be changed to a less costly type. Check to decide if this can be done without compromising too much on quality, if possible. Verify whether or not the improvement has reached a stage of completion at which work can be halted for a specific time period without affecting the quality of the completed project. This would be done for a period of time that allows for the accumulation of the needed funds.

Another change that can be addressed is the supplier for the building materials. Sometimes suppliers will give better discounts on the prices of their products than their competitors; if certain legitimate concessions are made. If the project is being funded by the property owner who is running short of funds for completion, then there is the possibility of pursuing a loan to complete the project. It would require appropriate drawing plans to be available with those plans having been followed. Proper building permits would have to be available. The entire property would have to meet the criteria of an appraisal and the required value. This is another reason for planning the home improvement from an official documented written format at the outset. Writing everything down allows for a well planned project at the outset.

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