Saving Goals: Caddle team member Jaime

What am I saving for?

Whether you’re looking to freshen up a room or gut an entire house from top to bottom to transform it into your perfect oasis, home renovations are exciting – and tricky. After all, you’ve probably got contractors to schedule, materials to pick out, money to allocate, and designs to pore over.

To make your renovation project a success, you’ll first need to identify which room(s) to start with, depending on your budget and timeline (and tolerance for stress!)

We caught up with Jaime, our Customer Success Manager at Caddle to tell us about her experience. Since moving back to Niagara in 2016, she’s been putting all her extra savings toward house renovations.

Savings Goals - Caddle Team member Jaime

“We bought a house with 1,000 little projects and after gutting and renovating the main floor, we are saving up to completely re-do our second floor into the dream master suite and guest bedroom,” she says, adding every dollar saved helps, especially since unexpected repairs and expenses can eat away at a savings budget.

The former Toronto resident had lived in Canada’s largest city for eight years before moving back to Niagara in favour of higher property values and a smaller city vibe. The vineyards, breweries, and array of fantastic hiking spots sweeten the deal.

“We (also) have a good group of friends that have either never moved or have moved back from Toronto and it’s a quieter lifestyle (here),” she says.

The excitement of renovating spurs Jaime and her partner to do the hard work of bringing their vision to life.

“I LOVE renovating – new stuff! Fresh paint! Making a vision come to life and making our home uniquely ours,” she says. The couple has already highlighted some of the great features in their century-old house.

“I LOVE renovating – new stuff! Fresh paint! Making a vision come to life and making our home uniquely ours”

On the flip side, though, there are some less-than-stellar realities of renovation.

“I do hate the mess of renovation and having to wait, or when something is delayed. It can feel like you’re living in limbo for months (especially if you’re living in the space you’re renovating), and progress takes time. It’s worth it in the end, but I’m always anxious for things to be completed.”

Saving for Renovations

Tips for home renovations

1) Plan and stick to a realistic budget.

Before you lift a hammer to start demo, get a grasp on a specific dollar amount you’re able to spend, then price out each item on a  budget line. For example, what about tile, fixtures, materials, paint, etc.? Don’t forget to allow for taxes and unexpected expenses (some advise building in a contingency fund of 10%). Source: 15 ways to save money on a home renovation – A Beautiful Mess 

2) Planning a DIY (Do It Yourself) fix? Learn what you can do yourself versus tasks you’ll need a professional for

This is another area where you’ll need to strategize. While you may be able to purchase your own materials, do some light demolition, and make cosmetic changes, you’ll probably want to leave serious structural repairs, asbestos removal, and major gas, plumbing or electrical work to licensed, experienced professionals.  Source: DIY vs. professional renovation: What to tackle yourself and what to leave to the pros – Curbed

3) Understand why you’re renovating, and look for deals.

Are you renovating with the intent to sell or to set down roots and invest in your forever home? That will influence how you spend. For example, home renovation blog Real Homes advises that an easy way to save on a kitchen is to purchase cheaper units and invest in good-quality work surfaces and tiles to add a luxury feel. Shop around for appliances, compare prices and don’t be opposed to looking at auctions or architectural salvage yards, or to buying products on display. Source: Cut renovation costs: 15 clever ideas – Real Homes

Now that we’ve told you our best tips for saving for a home renovation you can’t wait to show off, we want to hear from you! What was the first room you’ve ever renovated? Did you DIY, hire a general contractor, or both? What’s your next big project? Share your story and your best savings tips with us!