Why Do Renovations Go Over Budget

If you’ve gone through a renovation before, or have watched any home reno shows on TV, you know that renovations can tend to go over budget. While sometimes the reason for blowing the budget is due to unforeseen problems, you can also run into trouble if you work with inexperienced contractors. It’s important that the renovator working on your home is professional, skilled and trustworthy, otherwise you may be in for some not-so-nice surprises. Here are 4 reasons why renovations go over budget, and what you can do about it.

1. Low Cost Estimates 

When putting together a renovation contract, you’ll need to decide on your finishes, details of the project, and a list of products and materials to be used. Product costs will differ based on brand, dimensions, colours and materials. The products, materials and prices should be documented in the contract, as should existing conditions and potential problems seen in your home.

If you work with an inexperienced contractor, they may miss potential issues or give you a low cost estimate to look appealing. You’ll end up being charged the real price of the project at the end, and it will be more than you budgeted for. Get a cost estimate from a few different contractors. If one comes back way lower than the others, you’ll know it’s a red flag. 

2. Missing Contract Details 

The cost estimate and contract should include a detailed description of the work to be done. The contractor should be able to give you a detailed description of the project so you know exactly what you’re paying for. Anything left out of the contract may be forgotten when the project is underway.

Your contract should also have room for a contingency. The contingency is for unexpected costs that may come up down the road. If there don’t end up being any problems, you get to keep your money, but there should always be a space in the contract for contingency items. 

3. Project Changes  

There are almost always changes that come up during home renovations. You could change your mind about colours or materials, want to add another small project, or notice an issue you want to fix. All of these should be included in the contract if you notice them before any work has been done. However, if you decide you want project changes once the work has started, it will likely cost more money and take longer for the renovators to complete your reno.

When you work with an experienced contractor, the contingency clause in the contract will state how changes will be dealt with. It will be clear how the changes will affect the scope of the project, including materials, labour and associated costs. 

4. Hidden/Unforeseen Problems 

Unforeseen problems are unfortunately pretty typical when it comes to renovations. A skilled renovator will help you deal with these issues at the lowest cost while getting the job done right. It’s important to hire a professional renovator that’s familiar with the type of work required in your renovation. They’ll be able to identify issues ahead of time, and help you figure out cost-effective and creative ways to deal with them if they come up once the work has begun.

To save yourself from frustration and going over budget use one of Gentek’s Premium Renovators. They’ve all been hand selected by Gentek for their expertise and proficiency!