If you've ever received an estimate to remodel one of the rooms in your home you know that you start with a certain budget in mind. Often times when customers provide a list of 'must haves" and then give us their budget, it just isn't feasible. When this happens we will usually give the customer an estimate with all of their 'must-haves' on it that is over budget (sometimes by a lot sometimes not by much). We do this not because we want to go over their budget but to show them that it isn't a realistic budget for what they are asking for. When this happens if often times scares customers away...they either give up on their project all together thinking they cannot afford it or hire a company that promises them they can give them what they want within their budget that either takes their money and runs or does poor work leaving the customers leery of ever trying another remodel project.
What you should do when you receive your initial estimate is try working with your contractor to get it to a price you are comfortable with by removing items that aren't as important. This sometimes isn't as easy to figure out as you would think. Below is an excerpt from our Kitchen and Bathroom Remodel Survival Guide, it has an assignment that we recommend all potential customers do to help them narrow down what's really important to them. Often times customers find that they can still get a great kitchen/bathroom/basement without getting everything they initially thought they needed. Something to keep in mind is you can always add the items from your 'Desire' list at a later date.
Below is the excerpt from our Survival Guide which you can also use for a basement remodel.
To help plan your budget, you need to develop a list of “Needs, Wants, and Desires”. This list helps you prioritize the styles and functional elements you want to see in your new kitchen or bathroom and ultimately stay within your budget. To create this list, we recommend the following steps:
-Make a list of everything you don’t like about your current kitchen/bath. Once you think you have a pretty good list of “dislikes” (you can always add more later) take a few minutes to number this list with one being the most important change you need to make.
-Go through all of the design ideas you have gathered and make a second, separate list of every design and functional element you want to see in your new kitchen/bath. Be sure to leave room for new ideas that may come up as you’re shopping. Draw three columns to the right of your list labeled “Need”, “Want”, and “Desire”.
-With your list of “dislikes” close by, begin going through your list of new features. For each one, if it clearly addresses one of the things you dislike about your current kitchen/bath, put a check in the “Need” column. If it does not, put a check in the “Want” column for something that adds value, or check in the “Desire” column if it is simply an “oh wow” item, like decorative moulding or chocolate glaze. This is one of the most important steps, and the challenge here is to remain honest with yourself.
-Prioritize all of the items in each of “Needs”, “Wants”, and “Desires” columns, beginning with number one as the most important. Compare the item to what it “fixes” from your first list to help determine how important it might be. You might need to repeat this step a couple of times to make sure you are happy with the order.
-Rewrite the entire list, in the order you have just selected. This last step may seem trivial, but it gives you a final opportunity to make changes and adds a little peace of mind that you were thorough.
Once you’ve made your list, you’re ready to meet with the contractor who provided the estimate and adjust items as needed to fit within your budget.
Whether you choose to work with our company or not we highly recommend following these steps on any remodel project.. it will help to save a lot of time, stress, and money!
Contact our office today at 240-398-9003 for a FREE copy of our Kitchen and Bathroom Remodel Survival Guide !