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North Sydney Broker’s Leeanne Scott is the owner and principal of Mortgage Choice North Sydney. The information on this website is for advice only. To get advice tailored to your personal circumstances, come and meet Leeanne and Robert for free expert home loan advice at no cost to you. Call 02 8920 3455 to make an appointment today.

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North Sydney Broker
Bay 8, 6 Middlemiss Street,Lavender Bay NSW 2060
P 02 8920 3455 E leeanne@northsydneybroker.com

5 ways to renovate without blowing your budget

Updated: Oct 11, 2018


If you've been hooked to The Block, you might have big plans for your renovation project. But what if these plans are beyond your budget? A little DIY goes a long way and we have some tips that can save you serious cash on your fixer-upper.

Embrace the flatpack. Learn to love flatpack assembly. Suppliers like Ikea and Kaboodle offer stylish kitchen and bathroom cabinetry at a much more affordable price. If you can assemble the flatpacks yourself and book a professional to install the sinks, plumbing, stove and benches you can save thousands. If you still aren’t game to DIY, Ikea offers an assembly service, but this can still set you back by $1000-2000.

Appreciate the power of paint. Before you go ripping out existing structures, consider whether the structure and layout of the room work well. If they do, perhaps you can get a modern transformation through a simple coat of paint. You can buy specialist paint for almost any surface, and it can mean performing a minor change rather than gutting a room. Painting kitchen cabinets or spraying a bathroom are much more affordable than a completely new fit-out. You can freshen up the room by installing a new stove or basin for a third of the price.

Use spare tiles to revamp your laundry space: If you do choose to retile your kitchen, save any spare tiles and use them in the laundry space. Revamping the laundry with some new tiles and a lick of paint can be a simple task but is well worth the effort as it’s often a space that is ignored.

Do the demo yourself: Don’t be afraid to break a sweat. Even the most inexperienced renovators should be able to put in the hard yakka that keeps money in your wallet, so long as you’re willing to do it yourself. Anyone with a few practical skills can rip up flooring and dismantle kitchens. Hire a trailer or a skip and weed, remove and replant the gardens yourself. Avoid paying for a landscape service when you can lay your own turf yourself?

Swap for alternatives: If your bright ideas are adding up to a small fortune, consider making some compromises and swapping for a cheaper alternative. Although timber decking looks great around the pool, it can cost a bomb. Consider alternatives such as tiles, or a combination of textured concrete and lawn instead.  Can’t spare the ten large for plantation shutters? Wide-cut venetian blinds provide a similar look but cost nowhere near the same price. Other budget busters include replacing the kitchen handles instead of the cabinetry, and choosing laminate bench tops instead of stone or marble.