Kitchen remodeling is expensive! What are some areas of the remodeling process that you can do yourself to bring that overall price down? I’ve got 10 ways to save.
Here are the top 10 things you as the homeowner can do during your kitchen remodel.
I’ve listed each item from easiest to hardest based on your skill level.
#1. Be involved.
First and foremost, plan and organize your remodel yourself. You know what you want. You know what you need. Your contractor, however experienced, does not know you. Pay for the valuable technical expertise, but make the tough decisions and be happy with your choices. Ask questions. Be prepared. Be involved.
#2. Buy materials yourself.
Secondly, you can save money by buying your materials yourself.
Be sure to check with your general contractor first and know that some components will only be supplied to you through your hired contractors. It will depend on where you purchase your supplies. For example, if you buy your tile through the tile installer, they will buy and bring the tile to your work site.
Think about what you are able to do. Can you drive to the paint store, and pick up paint? Can you go to your local hardware store, and purchase hardware for your cabinets? Do you have the time to spend ordering cabinets? Can you buy that kitchen sink from on-line and have it delivered?
These are very easy tasks that any consumer can do.
#3. Demolish your kitchen yourself.
Your kitchen space, however bad, can be broken up into smaller steps to easily demolish. With the right tools, anyone can tackle a kitchen demolition. See my post about the homeowners guide to diy kitchen demo.
Additionally, if you have the time, you could be the one to scrape off the old ceiling texture. It’s a lot of work and a lot of looking up, but I do know of friends who have tackled removing popcorn ceiling on their own.
#4. Be responsible for your kitchen cabinets.
If you buy box cabinets, you may be able to pick them up at the store yourself (and save on the delivery fee!) Box cabinets are the easiest to install and you may find that you can assemble the drawers yourself. Remember, anything your contractor assembles will be on your dime.
Also, assess your newly purchased cabinets and make sure they are in good working order before your cabinet installers arrive. Plan ahead so that your contractor doesn’t have to come back another day.
#5. Install hardware.
In addition to the cabinets, you can install your kitchen hardware yourself. It only takes a measuring tool and a drill. While time consuming, this is one project you don’t want to pay someone else to take care of.
Other useful tips for install: use blue tape to mark your drawers and cabinets. And pre-drill your holes; you will have much better accuracy.
See my post on installing knobs and pulls here.
Every homeowner should know how to paint a wall. It’s amazing how a fresh coat of paint can change the look of a room. Schedule a day or two to paint your kitchen before your cabinets are installed. Talk to your contractor about when the best time to paint is during your kitchen remodeling process.
#7. Design your kitchen.
Not everyone has the knack for design, however, you can save thousands of dollars designing a kitchen yourself. It will take time and a thorough understanding of what you want, but you need to do that anyway if you hire a designer. Find a cabinet maker that has their own design software. See the following post about how to design a kitchen here.
#8. Install accessories yourself.
Feeling comfortable with a drill? Tackle the little extras yourself. Install accessories such as towel racks, storage trays, décor, etc. Know how to do minor plumbing work? Install the faucet and the garbage disposal. The more you do, the less money you pay for someone else to do it.
#9. Install the major components.
Have a background in construction? Maybe you can handle laying tile and grout work? If you have experienced friends, you could easily install box cabinets. Maybe you’ve installed flooring before or cut wood trim.
Or, maybe you may feel comfortable installing your appliances.
Any of these big items can be done yourself if you are confident in your ability to do it well.
#10. Be your own general contractor.
General contractor fees will contribute roughly 20% of your total budget. But in my opinion, they are worth every penny!
A general contractor can work with you on the full scope of your project. They will catch the things that you miss. They should be bringing their experience and knowledge to your project.
They are responsible for the scheduling of the various other contractors that are needed. They will order permits and make sure your kitchen is completed in a timely, and respectable manner.
You pay them to manage the project.
Bottom line, it’s your project. You decide if you are comfortable being your own general contractor.
Make sure whatever you do, you do it well. You should only tackle projects that you can finish with average to top quality or you will be spending additional funds to have it redone anyway.
While a kitchen remodel is a huge expense, you don’t want to cut corners. Identify which ways you can comfortably help and save a little in the process.
I hope you have found this helpful, and informative. What other ways can you DIY your kitchen remodel?
Helping you plan for tomorrow,
Interested in learning more about the kitchen remodeling process. Click here or on the image below.
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