What Drives a Home Remodeling Budget?

Remember when you first bought your current Shreveport-Bossier home?  Remember how excited you were about, well, everything?

Homeownership is one of the most intoxicating feelings in the world.  Now, a few years down the road, perhaps your life has changed.  Your family has gone from a party of two to a party of five.  Hello, need for more square footage!

Or perhaps the home you purchased is feeling dated and you want to make your space feels new and alive. Hello, modernization!

Welcome to the world of REMODELING!

Tuscan Kitchen Remodel Before

BEFORE See AFTER picture below.

Here, the possibilities are endless!  Think of Remodeling as a reboot or a rejuvenation of your home.  It is taking the “bones” of your home and upgrading them.  Do not let this process intimidate you.  We are here to help.

Below, we will walk you through What Drives a Remodeling Budget so you can fully understand the process and make sound decisions.

Let’s be honest.  Nobody likes budgeting or the conversations surrounding it.  It is zero fun.  There is no joy to be had in discussing how much (or how little) you can (or cannot) spend on something.  And let’s not even dive into the differences of how men and women approach this subject.  Men tend to be concrete thinkers, and women are, in general anyway, emotional thinkers.  It’s the whole “head versus heart”, shall we call it.

All of us semi-OCD, somewhat control freakish people live by and thrive on having a plan.  We would love to fly by the seat of our pants, but it’s simply not in our DNA.  We can hardly spell the word “spontaneity”, much less put in into practice.  Planning is our jam.  It’s what we do.  Budgeting comes easier for us.

For the people on the other end of the spectrum – the wake up and decide to go out of town for a week with no reservations and no agenda (my left eye is literally twitching at the mere thought) – this may prove to be more difficult.  It is, however, not impossible.  Budgeting is simply a plan.  It’s a plan you make in order to reach certain goals.  Isn’t that a simplistic, yet, beautiful thought?

Look around your home.  Like right now.

Is your kitchen sweating to the oldies?  Is your mudroom needing a stylish and functional update?  Is your bathroom needing a W-O-W factor rather than a OH MY?  Do you leave the light off when you go into the laundry room because the wallpaper is so bright?  What about that empty bedroom that was previously occupied by your now college graduate?

Let’s update and make everything fresh and functional to your family.

There is no time like the present to finally knock out that wall and add square footage in YOUR bedroom.  Who needs a Mexican resort when you can have it without leaving town?!  Let’s do a master bathroom update that will have you rushing home just so you can sit in your serene, elegant space.  Need more private living space?  Let’s plan a bedroom addition for your growing family.

All of these are possible (and so much more!) once you take a leap of faith and pledge NOW is your time.  NOW is the time for more focus on the family.  NOW is the time for more personal space.  NOW is the time to utilize wasted space.  NOW is the time for a redo, to refresh, to remodel – NOW is the time to fully embrace each moment at home and to view our home as our refuge, our soft place to land, our calm in a storm.

Since you now have a household budget and have looked around your home at areas you would like to remodel, you can move into creating a budget for your remodeling project.  Let’s talk about the three things that drive a Remodeling budget because, well, knowledge is power!

Before kitchen remodel dated 1960s home remodel Ashleys building

The Age of Home:

Age is just a number, right?  Oh.  And you should never, ever ask a lady’s age.  That is just rude.  Both are good pieces of advice, but not when it comes to your home.

Transitional Kitchen Remodel BeforeThe age of your home is vitally important and can hugely impact your renovation budget.  Older homes, like the beautiful South Highland homes in Shreveport, can have issues with the plumbing, electrical and foundation that may need to be corrected during a remodel.  These areas can prove to be catastrophic if not handled upfront and if not handled correctly.

Building codes have changed over the years.  When renovating a kitchen or bathroom, the electrical or plumbing may be original to the home and will need to be completely redone in order to be brought up to the current building codes and pass inspection.

I know what you are thinking.  These are not “pretty” items.  They are not enjoyable to plan and certainly do not bring any of the instantaneous gratification we all love so much.  The issues we cannot see may very well be the ones that ruin the things we can see.  Gotta tackle the behind the scenes before we can handle the pretty stuff.  You know, it’s like working on your mental health before you buy a new outfit…  That being said, planning on a contingency budget of at least 15% if your home is over 25 years old or older, will keep you covered.

Closet and Master Bathroom Addition in North Bossier Ashleys Building and Remodeling

Scope of Work:

Next is a HUGE decision and one that most definitely drives a remodeling budget – Scope of Work.  Let’s unpack that some more.  In the remodeling world, the scope of a job entails everything your remodeling contractor will perform for you.  The Scope of Work will list location of work to be done, project objectives, the new design, new floorplan, and cost/budget.  In simpler terms, this is putting on paper what you can expect to receive for your money.

Remember being a kid and blowing out birthday candles, making that wish and praying it would come true?  We adults sometimes forget the power of dreaming and wishing.  Once you decide to remodel, you are granted the right to once again dream and wish.  You can begin to envision (or physically document) that wish list.  When you have your remodeling budget set, you then move to seeing in black and white what you most want out of this budget.

Here in lies a problem, however.  Sometimes our wishes are larger than our budgets.  My Daddy used to say “Girl, your eyes are bigger than your stomach” when I would scoop a large portion of a yummy dessert after I had not even eaten all my dinner.   The same principle applies here.  You are allowed to wish, but know the limitations involved in that.

Removing a load bearing wall in a kitchen remodel Shreveport Long Lake Ashleys building If your main desire for your kitchen remodel is for an open concept plan, this can add thousands to your budget if a load bearing wall must be removed.  Another scenario involves rerouting shower plumbing to a new location to accommodate the new bathroom floorplan.  This is absolutely doable, but it will add thousands to the budget.

There are always options.  Always.  In lieu of all new gutting your space and installing high-end cabinetry, let’s paint the existing cabinets and add new countertops and backsplash.  The end result is a refreshed kitchen, one that makes you smile.  You may want every room in your house updated, but your budget may only allow for two of the rooms to be completely renovated. Let’s work together on choosing the Scope of Work that are priorities for you and keep you within your budget.

Bottom line… in this category, you must remain focused on your budget.  Kitchen and bathrooms tend to be the most expensive areas to remodel, but these areas yield one of the highest returns on the investment.  You must choose what areas mean the most to you and to your family.

Would remodeling the kitchen bring your family together every Sunday for dinner?  Let’s do it!  Would doubling the size of your master bathroom allow you to unwind after working a twelve-hour shift?  Let’s gut that baby and put in a steam shower with twelve body jets.  Look at your lifestyle.

Look at your budget.  Sit with those thoughts and find what feeds your soul.

Home Remodeling Materials, Tiles, Stone

Material Selections:

The last thing that drives a remodeling budget is the desired material selections.  Let me put this another way… Know what you can afford before you start surfing the internet and blindly walking through your local tile showroom.

Having champagne taste on a craft beer budget can be a kick to the gut.  Nobody really enjoys window shopping, do they?  So, always know your number before you begin the “fun” part of the remodel.

Tuscan Kitchen Remodel

AFTER picture

There are SO many different options available here.  For instance, you may totally be in L-O-V-E with that white marble countertop and white oak cabinets with soft-close hinges and drawer glides for the kitchen.  Add that pot filler, ceiling height custom vent hood and commercial-type burner gas range, and you are in heaven!  But… are all those necessary?  If your budget did not allow for all these high-end items, would you be willing to omit a few items or choose more cost-conscious appliances and materials in order to stay within your remodeling budget?

In this category, always be aware of areas you are willing to be swayed and areas in which your feet are planted in concrete.  If your budget allows for ALL the things, let’s do it!  If it does not, let’s find finishes and fixtures that look high-end without the high-end price.

See?  Budgeting for your kitchen remodel, bathroom remodel or home addition is not so difficult if you understand the process and are willing to make a few adjustments.

The age of your home, the scope of work and the material selections you want are all the driving forces behind that number.  Also, understand there may be hidden issues that may to be addressed and repaired before any of the beautification process begins.  Know what areas of your home are the most important to you.  Know what you can and what you cannot live without.

Remodeling your home should bring joy to your life, not stress.  Call Ashley’s Building, and let Lisa and Adam Willard turn that dream on paper into a dream you can touch.