House renovations can be very time consuming, costly and there are lots that can go wrong in between. With proper planning right from the start, you can avoid severe cash leaks in your renovation budget. Making smart choices when hiring a renovation contractor and planning your design changes can significantly help to save you money that can be invested back into your family.
With renovation cost in Malaysia going up year after year, every little bit of saving counts. Consider these 5 essential planning tips to take you through areas where you can save, get more value and avoid unnecessary costs:
Tip #1. Shop Around For The Right Contractor
Get in touch with at least 2-3 contractors to compare their quotations, skills, experiences and flexibility to carry out your house renovations. If you only speak to one contractor, you would be getting very little insight about what they are capable of doing with your house and miss out on other value added services that another contractor could perhaps offer. You wouldn’t even know if they’re overcharging you!
Ask for references and look for reviews if the contractor is as good as his sales pitch. Hiring an incapable contractor can potentially result in mistakes that you have to pay out of your own pocket to fix them.
Tip #2. Assess Your Budget & Personal Finances
Don’t think only in terms of how much you want to spend on your renovation, but consider your overall financial condition whether you can actually afford to renovate your house in the first place. Would that money be better spent on your children’s education or paying off debt? Your kitchen extension can probably wait a few more years.
Add a buffer of 25% on top of your projected budget – you need to be realistic about having bumps in your renovation and most renovations do cost more than we think.
If adding a 25% buffer seems rather steep on your tight budget, try to allocate at least an extra 10-15%.
Tip #3. Consider Why You Want To Renovate
Do you want to renovate for the comfort of your own stay, or are you doing it as an investment?
If you are renovating your own home comfort, you can do anything you want (within reason of course!).
If instead, you are renovating as an investment into your property, always remain objective in designing your renovation. Your taste for bright bold colours and futuristic lighting, might not be what your buyer or tenant’s taste. The most important thing is that your house is clean and presentable. Extensions usually have very uncertain returns and their value are questionable as well.
In this case, consult what your best options are with your interior designer, contractor or architect. Remember to get approvals! Valuers will not include any renovation cost into their valuation without proper approvals.
Tip #4. Next, Decide What You Want To Renovate
Be very detailed about the building and construction works that you need to carry out – what colour scheme do you want to have for your lounge area, how do you want to refurbish your kitchen cabinets, what type of electrical wiring you need for your new lighting, where will you be sourcing your tiles, fixtures and building materials, etc.
Don’t just think about the aesthetics, but consider the purpose behind your renovation project and whether your choices will achieve those results. Find out how much EVERYTHING costs and who you need to hire to do them!
Come to a decision and stick to it – making changes in the middle of your renovation is always going to cost you more money and time.
Tip #5. Going DIY
Another way to save on your renovation budget is to figure out what are the things you can do by yourself. Going DIY on simple things like bookshelves and small paintwork can save you a good amount of money. Do it as a family project and spend some quality time together!
We also have a list of qualified professionals who can help with your smaller projects like painting, electrical wiring installation, tiling, wallpaper installation, house repairs, roofing and even cleaners to help clear the mess up when you’re done!