The Question of ‘Cost’

12.16.10

A question we get all the time is “how much does it cost to build a home?”, or, “how much does a remodeling project cost?” The presumption is that there is standard prices for any given new build or remodel project that we can simply quote over the phone.

But in the business of new construction or professional remodeling, it doesn’t work that way. For the builder or remodeler, it’s an impossible question to answer without being given more information and detail. The answer can only be derived once a complete scope of work is outlined, designs are developed, material specifications are provided, etc. Once this information can be obtained, only then can real costs can be applied. Before that, it’s anyone’s guess.

The fact is, the details, and therefore the cost, of every project are uniquely different. The cost of your new build or remodel is entirely up to you, and is dependent on your individual tastes and desires. Your project costs will be very different from that of your friends, neighbors or any of our other client projects. Each project has its own set of unique issues that will have to be addressed. It will never be a “One Size – Fits All” scenario. Only you know how much you want to invest in your home. It is our job to assess the scope of work and apply our expertise and experience to finely detail your needs and desires, and marry them up to meet your expectations and budget. That’s why it is so important that we inquire about your budget amount when we meet; so that we can determine that your planned investment amount will match up with the scope of work that you envision.

Still, the “What does it cost?” question persists. So, it might be helpful to understand what goes into the cost of building a new home or planning a remodel to gain a better perspective. For instance, the costs of similarly sized homes, room additions or kitchen remodels vary considerably due to the scope of work. A one or two-story home, an addition, or a complete gutting of the kitchen vs. just refacing the cabinets, replacing the plumbing fixtures and appliances; as well as the level of detail and desired finishes… all have a certain level of cost associated with each scenario that may or may not marry up well with the planned budget amount.

With regard to remodels, there are also the stuff you don’t see right away at the surface, such as necessary upgrades to the plumbing or electrical systems that are exposed during demolition, or the need to alter any structural components to accommodate enlarged openings, move walls or support posts or beams to enlarge the space. We work hard to investigate in an attempt to discover those “hidden” costs and include them in the budget before hand, but those items are unique to each home.

In addition, costs related to acquiring permits or complying with current building or energy code requirements can add up from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars to the bottom line of a remodeling project, regardless of the basic scope. Labor and material costs can also vary substantially based upon the time of the year, the availability and demand of building materials and workers, weather conditions (such as for a new build or addition, which requires a lot of exterior work), and the complexity and detailing of the project.

The list of variables can go on and on, and we’re happy to discuss them with you and explain how they might impact the cost of your remodeling project. While it may be fair to inquire up-front what a new build or remodel may cost, understand that the key is to fully outline the scope of work and requirements in order to determine the best budgetary amount.

We hope that this informaiton offers you the confidence needed to select a builder or remodeler that will deliver long lasting value and maximize your budget.

To schedule your free appointment, call us at 972-524-5100.

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