The Price Is Right: How to Stay On-Budget When Building Your Home
It's a common misconception that building your own custom home will inevitably result in spiraling costs and unforeseen changes to your budget. While you should be prepared in case of emergencies, it is entirely possible to set a budget for your custom build and stick to it. You just need to know how to keep yourself on target. Here are a few tips.
Start Out Right
One of the main reasons people tend to go over-budget when they're building their own homes is wishful thinking. They assume that they'll choose the cheapest materials, promise themselves that they'll bargain down the construction company they hire, and accidentally-on-purpose discount the cost of interior design and other home comforts from the end price. Don't fall into these traps.
Instead, ensure your budget is realistic. If you're going to want high-quality materials for your home, that's within your right. It's not an extravagance to make sure that this custom project goes exactly the way you want it; that's what you're paying for. You just need to be upfront about it from the get-go, so you can prepare yourself to manage those costs.
Equally, don't try to cut corners by imagining that you'll be able to argue down contractors. You're paying for a highly specialised service, after all and you want the best possible finish for your home. It's fair to assume that if you get a cut-price invoice, you'll receive a cut-price job.
Make Decisions Early
The longer you delay in choosing your materials and other aesthetic options, the less likely it is that you'll be able to find a really great deal on those components. If you can decide early and stick to your decision, you'll stand a good chance of sourcing items that are both cost-effective and high-quality. You won't be scrambling around for tiles or paints last-minute and then forced to settle for something you don't really love, or a price you definitely don't love.
Don't feel pressured to end the house-building process with a fully-polished home. Your project is to build a home, not craft a magazine-ready interior design dream house. It's absolutely fine to get the bulk of the work done first, and then to save the polish and the fine-tuning for later in the game. Allowing yourself to do this will also mean that you don't need to shoulder the costs of that decorating work all at once, along with the construction. Instead, you can focus on one thing at a time and space the costs out while you do so.
Naturally, staying on-budget is often an issue of self-control. In the end, it's your money, so if adding a swimming pool will make you happy and you feel you can afford it, then go ahead. Just try to make decisions that will seem sensible five years from now, instead of just the moment they're finished.