Kitchen/Bath Remodeling Budget Guide

So you’ve decided to begin the process of remodeling your kitchen and/or bathroom(s). Whether you are just replacing the fixtures and cabinets with no extensive work on walls, electrical, plumbing, etc., you must have a plan and you must, must, must count the costs. I have seen and heard of far too many people, customers, do-it-yourselfers and even inexperienced contractors counting the costs, but not counting all the costs. It is better to know the true costs of your project instead of some dream cost that fits your pocket.

Subfloor 'mess'terpiece

GOLDEN RULE OF REMODELING: you get what you pay for. Therefore, make sure what you are going to pay for is worth its weight in remodeling gold before you spend those hard-earned dollars. Not doing your homework can leave you with an empty pocketbook, unfinished work and a very upset significant other if you do not play these cards right. And if you get snagged on something or run into a part of the project that you thought you couldn’t handle, you better have at least three backup plans for getting that part of the project complete. For example, a plumbing back up plan is having at least three plumbers on the list who are willing to do the and job that will be able to get over quickly and get the task completed in a timely manner so you can carry on with your project.

Cabinet Jigsaw Puzzle

The first and most important aspect of your project is to determine how much involvement and participation you are going to invest in your project. In other words, who is doing what? Are you going to be the contractor? Do you know what to look for in the subcontractors? And, again, who is doing what? Only you know what you want and not only in terms of the finished appearance, but also materials, products, price, etc.

Shopping List

Listen, don’t delude yourself into shopping for the lowest prices unless you are prepared for surprises (and plenty of them) along the way, and I’m not talking about surprises like pretty gift wrapped packages just for you, either. Never happens that way, hear me? NEVER! Expect the worst, because that is usually what you will encounter in any remodel project. You might even have all the plans laid out in superb detail. That’s fantastic and you are on the right track to remodel success, but rest assured, you’re true, plumb, level and square design is not the same as your “true, plumb, level and square” walls, floor area, etc.

The Tasks (Source: Ken Kelly,

Cabinets are in, now what?

Consider these real expenses that go into your renovation budget. Each of the following has an actual cost associated with it. When you come in to speak with us, we will discuss each item with you to keep you on budget:

  1. Room Prep (Plastic protection of doorways to other rooms and set up temporary kitchen);
  2. Demolition;
  3. Carpentry –(Are there structural changes involving walls, doors, windows, etc?) Are we gutting to the studs in a complete demolition or just replacing cabinets and doing minor patching?
  4. Consider the age of the house, was it ever updated, and what will it take to bring it to code?;
  5. Rough electrical,
  6. Rough lighting,
  7. Rough plumbing,
  8. Rough heating;
  9. Insulation;
  10. Sheetrock;
  11. Tape & Spackle;
  12. Flooring (Wood, ceramic, other? );
  13. Cabinet selection and purchase;
  14. Appliance selection and purchase;
  15. Countertop selection and purchase;
  16. Cabinetry installation;
  17. Appliance installation (setting appliances);
  18. Countertop installation;
  19. Drill and Install Hardware;
  20. Backsplash Tile Purchase;
  21. Backsplash Installation;
  22. Finish Plumbing,
  23. Electrical,
  24. Lighting,
  25. Moulding & Trims, and finish punchlist;
  26. Painting or Wallpapering

That said, now you have some serious ammo for a successful completion. Do it once right the first time or do it again and again and again for more and more and more time, effort and dollars. But, then again, you might be the kind of person who enjoys such constant change. I’d love to be your one and only source for quality woodworking projects, but I’m certain that is a long shot.

Good luck and good day.

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