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How to renovate your home on a budget

How to renovate your home on a budget



How to renovate your home on a budget


Have you ever asked yourself, How to renovate your home on a budget?


I guess you never really liked what a section of your house looks like. Is it the look of your kitchen?  It may even be the exterior look of your home or even your toilet. You always feel embarrassed anytime a guest asks to use it.


Agreed, many people face this kind of embarrassment almost regularly and have even given in to it. 


The main excuse has always been “I don’t have money! Even if I have the money, I’d rather get another place for myself and my family. “


But for how long, please?


There must be a solution to end this continuous embarrassment.

Thus, in this post, we are going to be dealing with 8 practice worthy steps to renovate your home on a budget.


How to renovate your home on a budget: 8 TipsThings to consider

How to renovate your home on a budget

  1. Decide on What is The Most Important of Your Needs


Alright, you are fed up with the old look and probably the structure of your house, but hold on. First things first, what you want to do, is to make the first plan, and decide what is most important to renovate. If you make a mistake here, chances you are going to flush money down the sewer are high.


Also, ask some very hard series of questions. Remember, you want to work with a budget. The plan determines in the long run what will consume money and what wouldn’t. 


Ask yourself, “why do I want to do this renovation? 


“Can I do it later?” if the answer is yes, then, you need to  back out ASAP 


If it is really necessary now, then press on. 


However, ask yourself again, “what kind of renovation do I want to do? Cosmetic renovation or structural renovation. If it iscosmetic renovation, then it doesn’t require a huge budget if you plan well. If on the other hand, you are opting for structural renovation, then more expense is involved.



2.  Look at Cost vs. Value for Each Renovation Project


You have decided what you need to renovate and what you don’t. The next thing is to count the cost. You don’t want to be like that man who had a thousand armies and chose to go to war against another with ten thousand armies. 


Be wise and really take your time. When considering how to renovate your home on a budget, the cost is an important factor. Hence,  If you have decided to go for a cosmetic renovation, you won’t spend much, but you still need to evaluate every expense involved. You would just spend some thousands of naira on minor renovations such as paint, curtains, carpets and so on.


However, if you are jumping on the structural train, it must mean you are planning to stay in that neighborhood for a long period of time, or you want to resell and get more bang for your buck. Pro Tip– Don’t do the structural renovation yourself, get a pro, a contractor. 


You want to avoid circumstances beyond your control in the long run, as a poorly done structural renovation is going to affect the integrity of the building according to Dummies.


In the same vein, if the cost of renovating your home is higher than the value you’d get, or even your budget, cut it down.


3. Figure Out How You are Going to Finance the Renovation


There are many ways to finance a real estate project. In this case, if you are low on cash, you can use the help of a mortgage. Going to the back to collect a loan for renovating your home or lending may be very stressful. In fact, there is no certainty you’d get a loan for that.


A mortgage broker can be your best friend in this case. Whether you are renovating for personal use or doing so to sell. You must understand the value of the loan you are getting for your proposed renovation. 


“How do I know this?” you ask, read about Mortgage in Nigeria here


You can find the value, by calculating the loan to value ratio. In the US according to This Old House, the loan to value ratio is 80%  but in Nigeria, it is 82% according to HFN.


Thus, at 80% if the value of your home is 10 million, your loan is going to be 8 million.


Do the maths and take what you can pay for. Remember, if the kind of renovation you are doing is a structural kind, then a  mortgage is advisable, you’d be paying contractors. However, if it is cosmetic, don’t bother lending. You can save for it.


On the other hand, if your pocket is up to the task, calculate and spend wisely.


4. Do it Yourself


Although you can easily call a contractor to do the job for you, still you decide to take the bull by its horns and simply do it yourself. Especially if your budget is weak. Even if you have a solid budget, there is no harm in doing the renovation yourself


If you are doing a cosmetic kind of renovation, it can be done all by yourself without hiring a retinue of experts. On the other hand, if the structural renovation is your option, you will require the services of experts. You can only help with menial jobs like clearing, moving and so on.


Look at how Curbed breaks doing it yourself and hiring a contractor.


5. Wait For The Promo/Discount Sales Seasons


When following the DIY model, one of the best ways to save money is to not buy just like that. Rather, wait for the best time in the year when things are a lot cheaper e.g the yearly Jumia Black Friday sales season


Although, there are different times in the year when specific things are sold, what you want to watch out for is when house materials are sold cheap. A simple “the best month to buy X thing” search query will go a long way.

6.  Hunt For More Than One Contractor


Okay, you are saying “I can’t do renovation myself!” good. However, before you jump on the contractor train, take heed. Don’t just get in touch with only one contractor and call it a day. That is not good when planning on how to renovate your home on a budget.


The truth is, getting a reliable contractor can be pretty difficult. So it is advisable you get in touch with more than one contractor and then make a choice based on stiff screening. A lot of things like knowledge of the job, skill requirements and even attitude are considered before you choose a contractor. You don’t want your money trickling down the drain. 


7.  Budget Extra Expenses 


This is essentially true, especially if you are doing the renovation yourself. Any mistake can warrant you to spend more than you originally budgeted for. To be on the safe side, keep aside about 20% of the total cost


Also, you may need to spend more, you may not need to. Doing this secures you from having an uncompleted project. You don’t want to have a section of your home uninhabitable for a long period of time, due to insufficient funds. So when planning how to renovate your home on a budget, all set some funds aside for miscellaneous. 


8. Cut Cost Where You Can


Finally, this is where you deal with unnecessary excesses. Don’t be afraid of cross-checking all you have budgeted for. If any part of your renovation has no serious consequences, cut it off. 


If you are renovating to resell, make sure you do not pump NGN200,000 on a kitchen that can be repaired for 50k. You must consider the neighborhood. If such is not really valued there, you have succeeded in throwing cash in the waste bin.


#Round Up


From the foregoing, you now know how to renovate your home on a budget and without breaking the bank. Tailoring all your expenses according to your budget.



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