10 Strategies To Save Thousands On Home Repairs

By: Glenn Whitehead

Hi Friend,
Thanks for Stopping by. If you’ve got repairs that need to be made to your home or are considering a remodeling project; the following list of strategies could easily save you hundreds or even thousands of dollars. I know this because I'veused everyone of them myself. I've worked in the residential construction industry for over 25 years and as a small, self employed contractor, it was a necessity that I learn creative ways to complete my projects, keep expenses down, and still deliver a quality product. These are time-tested methods that,not only work as well today as 20 years ago, but better and easier because of the technology available. Though I'm not actively in the business anymore; just a few months ago, I used several of these same strategies to complete repairs to my home caused by damage from "Hurricane Ike". The insurance company estimated (and paid) my property damages at approximately $ 26,000. Using the exact same methods I'll teach you, I completed the work for $ 8,000. This was without cutting corners or committing insurance fraud, but through the use of common sense, smart negotiating, bargain shopping, and a little hard work of my own. And no, you don't have to be a former contractor or know"people in the business". So let's get started saving you money. Just follow the steps as they apply to your situation. You may not need or want to use them all. The great thing is; any one of them alone has the potential to save you $1,000 or more. For more in depth information on any of these topics, click on the appropriate links or go to YourselfHomeRepair.com

1. Be Your Own General Contractor-A general contractor is someone who manages the entire job. From ordering materials to supervising the other trades, they are responsible for every aspect of the job. This makes it easy on the homeowner. The catch is; they don't do it for free. The fees for their services usually run from a minimum of 20% to as much as 70% of the total job cost. It's easy to see where you can rack up huge savings by taking on these responsibilities yourself. Of course there are things you will need to know like cost estimating, negotiatingwith subcontractors, getting the best material quotes, and preparing contracts;  just to name a few. Fortunately, we've got lots of advice and resources to help you through the process. For more info go to DIY Contractor

2. Do It Yourself-Nothing will save you more money than some good old-fashioned hard work. You may think, "I can't do that. I'm just not handy". You need to lose that negative attitude. I don't care what your background is or what skills you believe you don't have, I promise you; there is some form ofhome repair you can do that will save you money. What about painting? It's a part of a majority of home improvement projects and all you need is a little practice. You could do some drywall repair; fix those cabinetdoors that drag. The possibilities are endless. If you've got a remodeling project, do the demolition and clean up yourself. All of these are things that other people will charge you for. Open your mind and take a hard look at yourproject to see how many things you can do yourself. For helpful how to articles check out our doit yourself projects.

3. Get Competitive Bids-The most commonly used method there is for finding the best possible price for home improvement and probably almost everything else. I'm surprised how many people simply go with the first price they see. If you know how to find contractors and control the process, you'll have several of them eating out of your hand. To learn more about finding contractors for your project Click Here.

4. Negotiate With Contractors and Suppliers-This may seem simple, but, from experience, I've found that very few homeowners try it. It never hurts to ask for a better price. Just be honest "Hey, I'd like to have you do the job, but it's just a little out of my budget. Do you have any room to negotiate?" or "Is there anything we could do a little differently to save some money?". What youmust avoid is telling them their price is too high or it's not worth that much. Most people take pride in their work and believe their services are valuable. You won't get anywhere by insulting them. You are, basically, asking them to give you money. You'll have a lot better results if you ask nicely. I can't think of a single time when I wouldn't negotiate a little to sign up a job (unless the customer had made me mad).

5. Buy Used, Salvaged, or Surplus Materials-One man's trash is another's treasure. I have personally bought and sold a lot of used, surplus, or slightly damaged building materials. Online sites like Ebay and Craigslist, local classifieds, flea markets, andgarage sales are great sources of bargain materials. If you're willing to do the leg work, there is a lot of money to be saved here. You can also recoup some of your costs by selling your used or leftover items.

6. Buy Discounted Materials With Contractor Accounts-One of the ways contractors use to increase their profit margins is by purchasing materials and supplies at wholesale prices. Many suppliers will open accounts for contractors that instantly come with discounts ranging from 10% to as much as 40% off the retail price. You can, very easily,open these types of accounts as well. Most merchants require you to complete an application and may ask for a business card. Just print some on your computer using "Your Name Contracting" or "Your Name Home Services". I have never had anyone request any more information than that. These will, generally be "cash" or "pay as you go" accounts, but, if your credit is good, you may have the option of opening a charge account. Some of the types of businesses that offer these accounts are flooring stores, paint stores, plumbing and electric suppliers, and lumber yards. The large home improvement stores may open an account, but there are usually no discounts even for big customers. Wherever you are buying materials, just ask if there is a discount with contractor accounts. All they can do is say no. This will saveyou big money on large projects.

7. Use Multi-trade Contractors-You may also call them handy men, but whatever the name, having contractors that can perform several different jobs is another way tosave money. There are, generally, a lot of small tasks associated with remodeling or home improvement projects and if you hire someone to come out and do a 1 hour job, they've got to charge you enough to make it worth their while. If you find someone who can take care of several of these small projects at the same time, it only makes sense that they can do it for less. Of course, sometimes people will agree to take on things they're not qualified for. But, if you've properly interviewed the contractor and checked the references, you'll find this out beforehand.

8. Refurbish Instead of Replace-There are many things in a home that can be shined up a little or refinished to look like new. Cabinets can be re-faced and have new doors and drawer fronts and have new hardware installed. Furniture can be stripped and refinished, tile can be cleaned and re-grouted; even bathtubs can be refinished by spraying on an epoxy coat. Though these may not be your first choices, they will give your home a new look at a fraction of the cost of replacement.

9. Use Scratch and Dent or Floor Models-This is a great way to get new appliances at huge discounts. I bought a double oven that retailed for over $2,000 for only $1,200 because it was scratched. But, the scratches were small and on the sides. When the (built in) oven was installed, you could not see them. Floor or display models can usually be bought at good prices when the stores are ready to move them. It may take some looking, but there are a lot of great deals out there. You can also find deals like this on flooring, plumbing and light fixtures.

10. Shop Online-The Internet has revolutionized all business. Home repair is no different and you can find it all. Service companies, lumber, flooring, hardware, appliances; you name it; they sell it online. It is, however, just like shopping anywhere. Do your homework before buying and check those shipping charges.