After the Great Recession of the early 21st Century, it's no surprise that more people are remodeling. Even though home prices have fallen, many homeowners have found more value in renovating their existing home and staying put. In fact, if it weren't for one major flaw in the remodel industry, it's possible that good remodel contractors may not have felt the recession at all.
The Problem With the Remodel Industry
Whenever you go somewhere or research a product with the intent to buy, one of the major factors that you must account for is price. It doesn't matter if it is an internet purchase or your local department store. In fact, fair pricing is regulated throughout our country and in individual municipalities with a vengeance (ever hear about stores or gas stations getting fined after being checked by the Department of Weights and Measures because their pricing is incorrect? It happens).
So, what is it with the Remodel Industry. Just try asking a remodel contractor how much a project is going to cost and let the wriggling. Here are 5 examples of answers you're likely to receive:
Well, it's hard to say until we open up the walls...
I can't tell you that until after we sign a contract and start working out the details...
Don't worry about the cost, we'll work that out later...
It depends... What's your budget?
Cost? Don't worry about cost...I can get you a loan!
But, Let's Be Fair...
So, to be fair, there are some truths in all of these statements. Looking at it from the remodeler's point of view, we are often asked to bid a project without any idea of budget, expected to have X-Ray vision and stick to our price even when unexpected or unanticipated conditions occur on a job that cause huge delays or scope of work changes. As a result, most professional contractors are a bit gunshy about throwing around pricing because they are afraid they might have to eat their words later.
The Bottom Line
At the end of the day, any professional remodel contractor should be able to give at least a range of pricing for a particular project. If they've done a good job listening to your needs, they should be able to figure out what level of project you are looking for. And, they may give you a range of costs, from low to high end. That should be fine - after all, at least then you'll be able to figure out where your budget fits into that range.
As you read through this section, you will not find alot of exact costs. But, you will find some descriptions of the level of projects you might consider in remodeling your home and some fairly accurate ranges you can use while budgeting.