Angela over at Chasing Rainbows is hosting a weekly post that asks everyone to submit tips on how to save time and money during the month of September.
I honestly didn't really know what to write about as a lot of what I do is general everyday stuff that I guess you all do anyhow.
One thing I have learned though is to ask, as if you don't ask you will never get. Combined with using the Internet it is surprising how much money you can save. We are in the process of renovating the whole house. At the moment we are concentrating on the new laundry room.
I have been looking for a laminate countertop for our laundry room but due to the fact it is deeper than a regular countertop the pricing on it is double what a regular countertop is. By emailing various people/stores that sell countertops I discovered a place that will make me one for under $200, saving around $150.
It will give us the custom look we had wanted at a price that is better on our pocket book. The tiles we got from the laundry room are top of the line, but the store was selling them off, so tiles that could have cost us at least $3 a tile we got for $1.99. By asking a trades man who had done work in the house, he put us in touch with his brother who laid ceramic tiles as a side job. We paid him $600 cash for laying all the tiles in the basement. That also included him sorting out the floor and getting all the glue off of it, and supplying all the "stuff" to put down the tiles. Another guy had quoted us $1,200 for the same job.
So for a few phone calls and some time on the Internet I have managed to save over $800 so far on the cost of renovating the basement, just on those three things.
Also shopping at smaller stores can often realise better deals. I know when we bought the lights for the attic, we fell in love with them, but not the price. Dh boldly told them what he wanted to pay, it wasn't unreasonable, I think about $50 less and after thinking about it they said no problem. Not everyone will do that, but it doesn't hurt to ask. Just remember these people have to make a living, so be fair when negotiating with them.
Planning ahead also helps. If you know when a certain store holds a yearly sale plan around that. We got all the insulation for the attic and the basement on year at a big savings, plus we were able to get some gift cards also for buying over a certain amount.
If you know stores have a buy three get one free deal on paint wait until that deal comes on. You don't have to get the cans tinted at the time, they are generally more than happy to tint at a later date. Of course there are the "mis-tinted" cans of paint for very little money; can't say I have had much luck with those though. All these little things add up.
I am sure you can think of many more ways to save money when renovating.