There are good and bad surprises. When someone does something nice for you that was unexpected, or when you purchase something and get more than you expected, those are nice surprises. But when you get hit with expenses you weren’t planning on, that’s a surprise you’d rather do without.
When you’re remodeling your Naples-area home, you really want to eliminate (or at least minimize) those unwelcome surprises. Let’s look briefly at how unexpected costs can arise in remodeling projects—and how you can avoid them.
Choosing the materials you want in your newly remodeled home is a big part of the process. Often, homeowners look to upgrade to nicer flooring or carpeting or other fixtures. And sometimes that’s the right thing to do. A better-quality carpet for your master bedroom, for instance, will cost a bit more, but it will also last longer. But here’s where it can surprise homeowners.
Let’s say you have several rooms that need carpeting– totalling900 square feet. If you installed a good nylon carpet at $5 per square foot, you’d be looking at a cost of about $4,500 (aside from pad and installation). But what if you decide you want a nice wool carpet that you saw and fell in love with? The price might be $9 per square foot. That’s only $4 more than the nylon you originally planned to install. But when you look at the total cost, you’ll be spending $8,100—that’s a $3,600 difference! If you’re carpeting a high-traffic area, it might be worth it; the wool carpet will last longer. You have to weigh the value against the price. But you see the issue. A small increase ($4 per square foot) can add up quickly.
You can run into similar upgrade scenarios when it comes to kitchen cabinets, kitchen flooring, faucets and trim. Or you may see some stunning exotic woods on a site such as houzz.com and think you’ve got to have it. If you really want it and can adjust your budget, that’s great. But lots of little changes can add up to a big increase in your remodeling costs. So talk these things through with your designer/builder before you take the plunge.
There are times when spending more money makes more sense because of the increased value the change offers. Just be aware: the “aesthetic only” upgrades can sneak up on you if you’re not careful.
Unexpected Structural Issues
Sometimes structural problems can be hidden beneath the surface and aren’t seen until after construction begins. This could be anything from construction that’s not up to code to materials that have rotted from an unobserved leak. It’s not an everyday occurance, but it does happen. And then your remodeler has to fix the problem before he can make the improvements you want.
Every now and then, building and electrical codes change (usually in the name of safety). If you don’t make changes, you’re still in compliance because your home is “grandfathered” in. But if you remodel, you may have to upgrade certain items so that you’re up to current code. Sometimes something as simple as adding a few new outlets can put you over the limit on your breaker box and require you to upgrade. In sitting down with your designer/builder ahead of time, you may be able to identify some of those issues up front so that you don’t get surprised by them.
Taking time to talk through your remodeling plans with a qualified designer/builder can often save you from unpleasant surprises. Sometimes surprises happen and there’s nothing you can do about them. But the more you do to prepare yourself upfront, the better off you’ll be.