Ok, so life has been soooper crazy now with two kids demanding my attention day and night, but we thought it might be just the right time to finish our basement too. 🤷 Don’t ask me why. We’re a little nutso and it’s stressful, but we’re so excited to get this thing done!

dream home designs and how to do it on a budget

So, as of right now we have framing 3/4 done, HVAC all piped and ready, plumbing ready for appliances, electrical almost all wired, finishes picked out, final bids coming in, and a design locked in.

Here are some progress pictures.

Up next we hope to get our concrete stained and sealed everywhere but the theater and bedrooms, then drywall! It would be an understatement to say we are excited. Though the pics don’t really show the vision yet, it’s gonna be awesome don’t you worry.

But I’m sure you’re just wanting details more than my personal story. 😉 So let’s go over a few things we’ve learned with the budget, the bids, and the time lapse this takes.

First, the budget. Here’s a simple breakdown.

The first installment of framing: $1,080.00

HVAC ductwork, fireplace gas install, new filter (for people with allergies like me): $3,900.00

Plumbing (drilled, Jackhammered and moved pipes as well as wired hot and cold water): $2,100.00

Not too bad so far! We’ve done some sweat equity and my brother has been amazing and is amazing and will be helping us finish plumbing for a fraction of the cost. I’ve designed, B has put up electrical can cases. It has been cool learning some new things. So we’re at about seven grand.

Let’s go over some info about bids.

My best advise I can offer… Never ever ever ever go with the first bid given to you. We have three HVAC companies come in and got three totally different opinions with all of them. None of them were wrong, but some were over achievers while others were basic. And we just wanted the basic package. (They also sold us on a wicked deal for a fireplace that another client had given back to them and they wanted off their hands. Win!)

We also just had a concrete sales consultant come and give us a bid, then we called around to see if there were others with a better price. Turns out our first shot was the lucky one and we will be going with their offer.

It’s a competitive world, don’t be afraid to be the business man (or woman) running the show! Especially if you are acting the part of your own contractor/designer.

Let’s talk about time. Now we could have probably done a lot of the work on our own. I mean, there is YouTube, right? A DIY paradise. And Home Depot is right down the street from where we live. But we have two babies, and a hubby who works 50+ hours a week. So things aren’t getting done around here as it is. 😂

Also, I hope by sharing the prices of things this transparent will help you get an idea that hiring out isn’t so bad cost-wise. Or basically where your limits may be in creating your own little construction zone home.

Now, this is only part one of this journey, if you have questions comment below, or just wait for the next installment (aka Blog post). I’ll be trying to keep track of our design and budget on here, it helps to journal it all in one place. So, until next time, have an awesome day.

Check out my design vision boards here!

diy on a budget

This Lost Mama

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