Four | Dollars and Sense - the budget series

Part Four of our Dollars and Sense budgeting series, we share about how we spend the budget we have set! We give advice on how we price our reno plans, source products, work with tradies and find ways to save as we spend. Watch below, trust us - it a goodie.

Our advice for managing your spend while renovating

Consider the big picture

If you are unsure if you should spend money on a certain product or trade, consider the cost in light of the whole budget. We will often have conversations like “would we rather add a french door to the dining room or add a carpark out the front?” or “if we spend more, will we add more overall value?”. Thinking about what you are trying to achieve within your renovation will give you the right perspective as you spend.

Manage your risk

Your budget will have risk associated with it, but there is more risk when there are costs that are unknown or have not been accounted for, so show your budget to people with experience who can give you advice.

If one tradie is a big chunk of your total budget, get it quoted early. A variation either way from your estimated cost can impact your whole budget and plans.

Ask to get regular cost updates from your trades, especially if you are not sure how much they are going to charge for the full job. And if you change your plans as you renovate, discuss this cost before committing to it, and account for it within your budget.

Don’t just get the lowest price

When you are hiring someone to work on your house, research their reputation and workmanship. Reading references will give you an idea of how they treat clients and the quality of their work. Trust your gut and work with people you like. It is not worth saving on costs if your tradeperson is cutting corners, dishonest or unreliable - and unfortunately that happens far too often.

Get creative and explore your options

When you can’t afford something, it doesn’t need to be a bad thing, it just means you may need to explore other options or make adjustments. Talk with your tradespeople and discuss other ways to get the look or function you want. Some of our best ideas have come from budget restrictions.

This blog was sponsored by Kiwibank. Whether you're taking your first step or next step on your property journey, Kiwibank's home loan experts are available to help you through the process.

Their Mobile Mortgage Managers can come to your choice of location and their Banking Consultants are available at your local Kiwibank branch. Call 0800 000 654 or visit for more information.

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