Renovation Elation: Achieve Your Dream Home Without Breaking The Bank

Renovating and completely making over a property is hard work, there’s no denying that. However, if you’re prepared for a challenge, you can actually save yourself a ton of money and create a home that’s custom to you. Properties that are ‘move- in ready’ are always more expensive, and sellers can boost their asking prices by thousands just by applying a little paint and doing some minor redecoration. On the other hand, properties that are a little run down often have thousands removed from their asking price, meaning as a buyer you can get in there and snag yourself a great deal.

When you picture your ‘dream home’, chances are you have in mind something that’s custom to you. If you move into a property that’s already finished, it can seem like a waste doing things like ripping out a perfectly good kitchen or changing good carpets just because you don’t like the color. If you go with something that needs work, you get to make these finishing decisions without wasting money. If you’re in the market for a fixer-upper, here are some things to bear in mind.


Have a Survey Done

When you’re buying any house it’s good practice to have a survey done, otherwise, you’re buying blind and the property could be hiding all kinds of expensive issues. But when you’re buying a property which you can see just from looking at it needs some work, it’s even more important to do so. Older homes can be hiding rot, asbestos, bad wiring and all kinds of issues. You’ll want to have the roof checked out and anything else that’s likely to cause a problem. Knowing this information puts you in a good position for negotiation. The last thing you want is to pay a hefty price and then be stung with all kinds of additional costs where you didn't realize what was wrong with it.

Make an Offer That Reflects The Work You Need to Do

Once you know what’s wrong with the property and what kind of work it will need doing to bring it up to standard, you can negotiate the asking price accordingly. A fixer-upper isn’t for everyone, so with less competition and fewer buyers, the seller is probably keen to sell. It could be worth putting in a cheeky lower offer to begin with and see what they say. You need to make sure that the price of the house along with all of the renovation costs don’t exceed your budget, don’t get carried away and take on something you won’t be able to afford to finish.


Look For Ways to Make Savings

When you’re renovating a home, it’s tempting to want to splash out on the best of everything. But to keep things within your budget, always be on the lookout to make savings. For example, if the kitchen comes with old-fashioned units but they’re made from solid wood, could you paint them? If there are already appliances in place but they need looking at, how about using a repair company like This could save you hundred on new items and prevent you throwing away things that are still good to use. Scour for things like second-hand bathtubs and sinks, these can often be found in good condition but with a massive reduction from the RRP. Work out where you’re willing to compromise and what you can do to save money.

Do Some Work Yourself

Of course, some jobs should always be left to the professionals. Electricity and gas, for example, will legally need to be fitted by professionals, don’t try and save money and DIY here you could cause a serious incident. However, there are plenty of things that you can get on with to save yourself some money. Decorating, gardening, removing rubbish and more will all mean you’re not having to pay someone else to come in and do this for you. Even just clearing away the rubble and mess at the end of each day means your tradespeople can get to work instead of spending time tidying. If you have friends and family members who have trades, rope them in and ask for a hand. A builder, plasterer or decorator friend, for example, could give you cheap rates that will save you hundreds over the renovation.

Stick to a Budget

Renovating a home can be unpredictable, and costs can add up and come out of nowhere when you weren’t expecting them. This means things can change over the project. But one thing to be strict on is the budget, if some areas cost more then you should find less expensive ways to complete others. You will, of course, have a contingency fund, but once that has gone then stop spending. The last thing you want is to have a beautiful home but be in so much debt it ruins things for you. Do the most important jobs first, and so if the money runs out, you can save to finish the rest without it feeling like you’re living on a building site. For this reason, things like decor and decorative touches should be purchased last- with all building works and other major renovations being done first and out of the way.

Sell What You No Longer Need

If you’re moving from another property into the dream home you’re renovating, chances are there will be lots of items you no longer need. Furniture for example that won’t work in the new place can be sold instead of scrapped. As you’re packing, declutter and sell any items of value that you come across that have been sitting in drawers collecting dust for the longest time. You might even have antiques up in your loft. Any money you raise can be used for purchasing items for your new home. Try boot fares, Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist for selling all kinds of items.

Are you in the process of renovating, or is this something you plan on doing one day to achieve your dream home?