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7 Easy Thoughts to Budgeting your Kitchen and Bath Remodeling Costs

April 14th, 2016

Home remodeling projects can seem so easy and fun in the beginning–scrolling through blogs and other sites pinning pictures and desired looks that you eventually hope to implement in some way in to your renovation.

When taking these steps, one might not think about the word budget. This may crush the dreams you had of intricate cabinet work and high-tech appliances, as you begin to think about steep labor costs and other things that barely crossed your mind like electricity and plumbing. Even if the renovation of your dreams fits your budget it is hard to figure out how much you will need to allocate to each of the different costs that accompany a kitchen or bathroom renovation. Here’s how you can be prepared for project costs and avoid unexpected last-minute expenses.

  1. Hire a home inspector.

Although initially this may seem like all it does is increase the cost of your project, but hiring a home inspector to give your soon to be renovated area a new look will allow you to be prepared and ready for any unpleasant and unexpected surprises during your remodeling. Knowing these pitfalls in the beginning will allow you to keep your budget closer to what you had originally estimated.

  1. Understand your budget.

According to the experts at the National Kitchen and Bath Association, you can get the best estimate of your budget and where to spend with the categories listed below. The guidelines will allow you to avoid sticker shock when you get bids from estimators. This will allow you to get the dream kitchen or bath while spending in the right spots.


Kitchen Renovation
Design fees: 4%
Installation: 17%
Appliances and ventilation: 14%
Cabinetry and hardware: 29%
Countertops: 10%
Lighting: 5%
Flooring: 7%
Doors and windows: 4%
Walls and ceilings: 5%
Faucets and plumbing: 4%


Bathroom Renovation
Design fees: 4%
Installation: 20%
Fixtures: 15%
Cabinetry and hardware: 16%
Countertops: 7%
Lighting and ventilation: 5%
Flooring: 9%
Doors and windows: 4%
Walls and ceilings: 5%
Faucets and plumbing: 14%
Miscellaneous: 1%

  1. Be realistic with your budget.

It can seem like common sense to go in with a realistic budget for your product, but for some people it may be a difficult thing to face. “Sometimes this conversation can be uncomfortable, but it’s so easy to overspend on the kitchen and bathroom,” says Anne Reagan, editor-in-chief of One thing that can drive up your bill is unexpected product rush delivery costs that can quickly drive up the costs.

  1. Is a permit necessary?

A permit for your renovation project is only necessary sometimes. Things such as fencing installation, window installations that are bigger than the previous ones, structural changes, etc. may require a permit. The professional gets the permit typically, but it is the responsibility of the homeowner to make sure that the permit is obtained properly.

  1. Avoid scope creep in construction costs.

This simply means to stick to your plan. Adding one piece of furniture can lead to needing even more décor pieces around it to make the room flow properly. Remodeling one room can give you the desire to keep going throughout the rest of the house. Prices can begin to climb when converting a kitchen into a kitchen dining room combo.

  1. There’s more than the sticker price.

When thinking about the cost of your counter top, make sure you are also thinking about things like installation and maintenance costs. These are called “associated costs” and can be very unexpected if not thought about prior to your purchases. “For example, if you want marble countertops, you’ll need to purchase the entire slab (even if you don’t need the entire slab) and pay for cutting fees, finishing fees, edging, delivery, and more (costs vary by region and supplier). So not only is marble on the high end per square foot, [but also] there are other higher installation costs associated with this material,” Reagan says.

  1. “Am I capable of being my own general contractor?”

This is a very feasible task, but you need to make sure you can be responsible for all aspects of the project. Included would be subcontractors, sourcing materials and accessories, and making sure that everything arrives on time. This can be a big way to save costs. It is essential to make sure you are fully capable of taking on some tasks by yourself rather than hiring out, because they can end up costing you more in the long run.

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