How to Keep Costs Down When Remodeling an Older Home

If you’ve taken on the task of remodeling an older home, while it can initially seem a bit overwhelming, one of the most important things to keep in mind is that it’s never a waste of time to do it. Not only do older homes tend to be larger and sturdier with countless decor possibilities, but once you are done with the remodeling process, you are sure to raise its property value by at least a few thousand dollars.

Of course, in order to do that, you have to be willing to invest some money on the front end. That’s why we wanted to take out a moment to provide you with a few tips on how to keep the costs down while you’re in the process of giving your older home a bit of an “upgrade.”

Be realistic with your plan.

If there’s one thing that tends to be true for basically every older home is that there is always a lot that can be done. That said, one thing that you don’t want to do is be so caught up in all of the possibilities that you fail to budget.

So, make sure to take one project on at a time and map out how much it will cost to complete it. When you’re done with that one and your finances can handle something else, then take on an additional renovation.

How to Keep Costs Down When Remodeling an Older Home

Do some things yourself.

Thanks to channels such as HGTV and websites like DIY Network, no matter what it is that you want to do in your house, there’s a pretty good chance that you can figure out how to do it yourself. When it comes to DIY projects, our main recommendation is to be realistic.

In other words, do what will come fairly easily to you, but if it does require a professional contractor or designer, hire one. You want to do all that you can to “get it right” the first time.

Try some upcycling.

When a lot of us think of recycling (and the benefits that come with it), clothes are often what immediately come to mind. But by going to antique stores, estate sales and even a Habitat for Humanity Restore, you can recycle in another kind of way by finding all kinds of older pieces with a lot of character that you can paint, refinish or clean up—pieces that you can recycle that will be more authentic and cost a lot less than what you’ll find in a commercial hardware store.

Conduct an energy audit.

One of the biggest mistakes that people make when it comes to remodeling an older house is they fail to conduct an energy audit to see where they may be needlessly losing electricity or water due to cracks near windows or doors, torn insulation or leaky pipes.

But if you either hire someone to come to your home or you decide to do the audit yourself, it could help you diagnose some issues (like if you have humidity air conditioning for example) and also help you to see what would be a wise investment (like maybe adding some double-pane windows).

Once you’re done, there’s going to be some trash that’s leftover, and by that, we mean more than just some paper and old flooring. If you need to get rid of some cabinets or an old sink, did you know that you can also donate those things to Habitat for Humanity and get a tax deduction just for doing it? It’s a smart way to be eco-friendly and even save money on your trash in the process.