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4 Money-Saving Renovation Hacks That You Won’t Regret

October 17, 2019
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Whether your budget is big or small, the cost of a home renovation can easily get out of control. However, you can save precious ringgits and still achieve the results that you desire by making a few compromises and being more involved in the project.

Tribeca, Kuala Lumpur by Cube Asia Design

Interior Firm: Cube Asia Design

Find out how to spend less and get more out of your next renovation project with these insightful tips:

1. Reuse materials

When making home improvements, reusing materials that are still in good condition saves not only money but also time (by limiting removal works) and the environment. Moreover, certain materials like hardwood, concrete, and natural stone are worth saving because they are hard-wearing and attractive even with age.

The Wharf Residence by X Dimension Design

Interior Firm: X Dimension Design

Other items you should consider reusing or repurposing include; lighting and plumbing fixtures, cabinetry, and wood siding. Discuss with your interior designer on your intention for reusing materials to avoid conflict later on. This will also make it easier for interior designers to plan designs that will help you to salvage materials and save as much as you can.

2. Sell extracted pieces

You might find that certain pieces of furniture or fixtures no longer mesh with your current renovation concept. Still, simply discarding them would be a waste. Instead, consider selling them off and putting the money towards covering your construction bill.

Sime Darby Melawati, Type A by SQFT Space Design Management

Things like cabinetry, furniture, old lighting fixtures, soft furnishings, and even carefully extracted built-ins can be sold off to second-hand stores. Sometimes, even your designers may consider taking them off your hands for a slight discount, if they are interested in repurposing it for other projects.

3. Know when to DIY

It’s important to draw the distinction between what you can do yourself, and what should be handled by the professionals. As a general rule of thumb, any structural changes that involve knocking out walls, or works that include plumbing and electricity should be managed by qualified contractors and designers.

Cheras by Nu Infinity

Interior Firm: Nu Infinity

With that said, you can still save money by engaging in these DIY projects:

  • Shopping for materials and appliances

Take the time to scout for good bargains and save money when sourcing for tiles, cabinetry, household appliances, hardware, and lighting fixtures. If you are not sure about the compatibility of styles, quantity, or size issues; be sure to check with your designers first before buying.

  • Making minor cosmetic changes

Improving the appearance of fixtures, furniture, and other fittings at home through DIY projects are easy and doable, especially with the aid of free online tutorials available on YouTube, for example. Save money by installing your own tile, distressing furniture, refinishing old wooden pieces, restoring lighting fixtures, and stained hardware.

  • Minor demolition works

Pulling out carpeting, carefully extracting cabinetry and other built-ins, as well as removing tiles by yourself are the kind of light demo works that can help you to reduce the costs of construction, but discuss this with your designers beforehand.

4. Discuss options to structural changes

Knocking out walls, putting in new windows or adding a skylight, and redirecting plumbing are all examples of major, costly renovation traps to avoid when working with a limited budget. While it might be tempting to want to start anew; know that it can be very pricey to plan, hack and demolish, and then rebuild your home from scratch. Worse still, it can be dangerous or problematic if your builders are not experienced in making extensive structural alterations such as removing load-bearing walls.

139 House, TTDI by WanHui Architect

Interior Firm: WanHui Architect

It’s a better idea to seek out alternatives that can achieve similar results while maintaining the existing structure. For example, instead of adding more windows to increase natural light indoor; ask your designer to create a lighting plan for optimal, natural-toned illumination or install more reflective surfaces to mirror and expand natural light streams.


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