Remodeling your home can make it more attractive to buyers or just a more pleasant, more comfortable space to live in. If you’ve been wanting to remodel or renovate your home, you have likely been putting it off because of the horror stories you’ve heard about the tens of thousands of dollars it will cost. But it doesn’t have to be that way if you do it right. To help you realize your dreams for your home, here are 5 tips for remodeling your house for less in Los Angeles.
1. Start with the Big-Impact Changes
Remodeling your house for less in Los Angeles means, first of all, getting the most bang for your remodel buck. And you do that, according to the pros, by “making the changes that have the greatest impact first – the things that will get the most bang for your buck, things like paint, flooring, lighting, and arrangement and the existence of appliances and furniture.”
Then, after you have taken care of the larger, biggest-impact things, you can move on to the smaller things that also have an impact, such as:
- Replacing cabinet hardware to spruce up the kitchen
- Painting trim to brighten rooms without having to paint the whole room
- Replacing old rugs with bright new ones
2. Do What You Can Yourself
Doing things yourself usually saves a significant amount of money. While you may not be an experienced carpenter or electrician and your remodeling skills may be limited, there’s still a lot you can do to cut remodeling expenses. You could, for example, bargain with your contractor to do the tear out and the cleanup – both time-consuming tasks that most contractors will willingly trade out.
And if you are ambitious and have the time, you could acquire the necessary skills and do most of it yourself. There’s no shortage of books to instruct you, and you can learn almost anything from YouTube now. Just don’t attempt the work like wiring that requires a licensed professional.
3. Shop for Best Prices
If you’re like most of us, you just go to one big box store and buy everything there because of the convenience. But for remodeling your house for less in Los Angeles, you need to shop around for the best prices for your remodeling needs. Prices for construction materials and household goods can vary significantly from store to store.
Heres what the remodeling pros recommend: “Be sure to compare the prices at different stores and online. You may find that it is cheaper to buy the item at a store when it is on sale, and then pay someone to install it for you. In this way, you will also be able to pick out the exact thing that you want in your home. Also realize that since most items you install during a renovation or rehab will stay in your home for a long time, there is no need to buy the latest and greatest item. Most people will not know a couple of years from now whether you bought an item that was from 2012 or 2013.”
4. Concentrate on Surfaces and Fixtures
We mentioned above that remodeling your house for less in Los Angeles begins with making the big-impact changes. Similarly, you should concentrate on those things that are highly visible and noticeable and that can make the biggest aesthetic difference – that is, surfaces and fixtures. Following are some possibilities:
- New switch plates and receptacle covers
- New door hardware – knobs, locks, and hinges
- New lampshades to accent and complement the new look
- Crown molding to make rooms look upgraded
- New or freshly painted baseboard and door trim for a splash of color or accent
5. Improve Lighting
Whatever remodeling you do at whatever cost will be futile if you can’t see it. So if you are putting in all the effort involved in remodeling your house for less in Los Angeles, you also need to work on the lighting.
Keep in mind, though, that you aren’t shooting for mere brightness alone. For optimal lighting, make “sure the ‘light spectrum’ from your bulbs is appropriate for the area. You want soft bulbs that emit a yellow/red undertone in ‘hanging out’ zones such as the living room. You want bright bulbs that emit blue undertones in ‘study’ zones such as your home office or library.”
An easy and fairly inexpensive way to improve light is simply to hang more mirrors on the walls This will make your home seem brighter by amplifying the light you do have. Also, hanging two mirrors in a room, on opposite facing walls, will make a room seem bigger.
Remodeling your house for less in Los Angeles can indeed be done, but it will take some thought and planning and, of course, elbow grease. And it never hurts to consult someone who has plenty of experience in this area, especially regarding what changes will give you the most bang for your buck. Your local real estate agent can be just such a resource.