Price Vs. Value

Price Vs. Quality

We’re planning to remodel our kitchen and want a professional job, but hoping to pay the lowest price possible.  Do you have any tips for us?

The dilemma that confronts many homeowners such as yourself is the desire for a top-notch job at the lowest possible price.  With price as the primary focus, other criteria that may carry more weight in producing a successfully completed project and a smooth working relationship with the remodeler is ignored.

It’s understandable that price is a major consideration when it comes to remodeling.  The cost of remodeling has increased as the demand for remodeling grows.  Higher costs of materials (such as copper pipes) and scarcity of skilled labor are just two factors contributing to price hikes.  A national trade magazine, Remodeling, reported in the Cost vs. Value survey that a mid-priced major kitchen remodel, a popular remodeling project, costs $53,931.  For a minor remodel of the same 200-square-foot kitchen, the cost is $18,527.

Homeowners need to understand that remodeling is a service and not merely a product.  This service encompasses the intangibles that make up the process of remodeling – how everything comes together and results in a satisfying experience and an acceptable finished product.  The materials and products that go into it can’t define a professional job alone.

The nature of remodeling as a service becomes even more pronounced when you consider that inevitably you’ll be sharing your home with the remodelers’ crews for weeks or even months, depending on the scale of the project.  All remodeling involves some degree of inconvenience, but inconvenience can easily turn into a nightmare if your remodeler doesn’t put your family’s comfort and concerns first.

Rather than selecting a remodeler based on where one bid falls compared to others, shift your focus to finding a professional remodeler; then go about getting a bid on your job.  If the bid is higher than what you budgeted, work with the remodeler to decide where you can cut back or what you can postpone to keep the project on budget.  For example, you can always have the remodeler frame in a fireplace to be installed later, but he can’t upgrade the company’s customer service if there wasn’t any to begin with.   The time-proven adage that “you get what you pay for” repeatedly proves true.

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