3 Types of Hidden Costs in Home Remodeling

dream kitchenNo matter how major or minor your upcoming remodeling project may be, hidden costs can surface from a variety of directions. As you attempt to save up the money or take out a loan to cover costs, the savvy homeowner realizes the need to plan for the unexpected. A few main sources of increased cost can be misunderstandings about estimates, desired upgrades, or DIY-related problems.

Misunderstandings About Estimates

Many homeowners become frustrated when a contractor’s bill ends up exceeding the original estimate. Even the most experienced contractor cannot know exactly what will be discovered when surface-level pieces are removed. Any decent contractor will make sure that under-the-surface problems are corrected before aesthetic additions are put in place. Underlying problems aren’t the only reason your bill may exceed your original estimate.

drillingSometimes a homeowner ends up with a higher bill than expected simply because they misunderstand the terms of the estimate given. When you request an estimate, it’s important to get it in writing, along with a project description. You’ll also want to have a record of what’s included in the amount, as well as what is excluded from it. Sometimes certain products, tools, or building materials may be excluded as well.

Desired Upgrades

Sometimes homeowners decide on costly upgrades partway through the remodeling job. While it stands to reason that the project cost will be affected, and the homeowner will be liable for that added cost, some homeowners may not realize the impact that a tile or shower fixture upgrade may have on their project cost. By sticking to the product choices made before the estimate is given, homeowners can avoid such unsavory surprises.

homeowner with architectAdditional hidden costs can arise if the project gets delayed or takes place over an extended period of time, because building supplies may increase. Homeowners can decrease the chances of such unpleasant surprises by asking the contractor about costs expected to change. You could also contact a contractor’s references to find out about his track record for staying close to the initial estimate or at least planning for the typical amount by which a project typically ends up exceeding the initial estimate.

DIY-Related Problems

For those who decide to forego estimates and contractors altogether, unanticipated costs can still plague a remodeling project. Homeowners who decide to go the DIY route often neglect to figure in permit fees, which may be based on the estimated construction cost. In addition to building permits and application fees, additional permits and application fees may be needed for electrical, mechanical, or plumbing work.

Supplies and tools can also add up to more than expected, especially for the novice DIY-er. Particularly if you’re doing a project unlike any you’ve done before, you’ll likely need supplies you didn’t realize you would. If a contractor breaks something in the process of your remodel, repairs will be covered; however, if you cause damage in your own home, you’ll have no one else to foot the bill.

D.R. Hartman Construction Inc

If you are looking for a full service commercial or residential construction company in the Maryland, Washington, D.C., or Fairfax County, Virginia region, we'd love to have the opportunity to learn about your construction project and give you a free quote. Submit our online contact form or call Don Hartman at (301) 926-9000.

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