How to manage your project budget

Working within a tight budget is one of the most complex aspects of any home improvement process. For most people, a home improvement project will only start after weeks, if not months, of deliberation about the details, like how much you are going to spend. Just a few stray details could mean hundreds of dollars in added expenses, if not more.

Before you break ground on a new project, make sure you have a well planned out budget that takes into account things that might interrupt your renovation process. It is impossible to foresee the unexpected, but it is not impossible to plan for it.

Whether you are building a new home brick-by-brick or are adding some additional cabinets to your kitchen, here are a few tips to help you manage your project budget:

* Get everything in writing: Don’t take any risks with misunderstandings. When you create a project plan, make sure you have everything written down so that you have a written contract to refer to in case of an issue. Ensure that the verbally agreed on price is printed clearly in this contract.

* Budget in the unplanned: When it comes to projects, however big or small, the unlikely situation is one where everything goes right and no extra funds are needed. In most cases, something comes up. Plan ahead for this by stowing away a few extra dollars. Things like plumbing leaks, broken equipment and other unanticipated mistakes can’t always be put off to a later day.

* Discuss material costs: When you hire a contractor to do a job for you, in most cases you are putting them in charge of obtaining materials. In addition to discussing the type of materials, get a quote in writing of the expected cost. Shop around and make sure you are getting materials at a reasonable cost.

Talk to your contractor about creating a contract with these details, as well as noting a specific date by which your project should be completed. This is something important to do at the onset of your home improvement process. This can help you a great deal when it comes to managing your budget.

Working within a tight budget is one of the most complex aspects of any home improvement process.
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