Home remodeling plans can get out of hand quickly. Kitchen and bathroom renovations are expensive and time-consuming. A lot of times, homeowners don’t even get a return on their investment when it comes time to sell. Think smaller and smarter and follow these tips for inexpensive ways to renovate your home.

Save On Materials

When planning, think backwards. Rather than coming up with an idea for a remodel, then shopping for materials, see what’s sitting in the bargain bin. Clearance and reduced-price lumber, trim, light fixtures, and premixed paint are all available at your local building supply store. Also, check out Habitat for Humanity’s several ReStore outlets that sell donated materials at a discount.

Invest Sweat Equity Into Your Project

Besides materials, the next major renovation cost is labor. Shave away your remodeling bill by doing some of the work yourself. You may be able to handle demo, cleanup, prepping or moving materials. If you like painting, save that job for yourself and just have the professionals do the rough skilled work.

Avoid Money Traps, Focus On Simpler Repairs

Some plans add unnecessary major remodeling tasks. When renovating a bathroom, for example, avoid relocating the toilet, shower, or sink if possible. The plumbing and carpentry work involved will add to your final bill. Focus instead on upgrading cabinets and hardware as a way to make the bathroom seem new.

Some Small Jobs Have Big Impact

A fresh coat of paint can make a tired-looking house sparkle. Pay attention to small details, like adding contrasting trim painting. New hardware, such as doorknobs, light switch covers, and light fixtures are relatively inexpensive and can be just as impressive as a full remodel. Saving on some rooms can also increase your budget for a major renovation that you really want.

Plan With Stock Sizes In Mind

A final tip for shoestring budget renovations is to work with standard-sized building materials in your projects. Lumber comes in 8, 10, and 12-foot sections. Building a 14 by 27-foot deck is going to require lots of custom trimming work and a lot of wasted material. Plan smartly and save.