Renovating older properties to a more contemporary interior design requires vision, patience and money. You may have found the ideal property to update and bring forward to this century, but there are going to be occasions when you need to make decisions that can challenge your budget.

The budget that you have allocated for the renovation will be the main concern you have during the project. You will have done the math for your mortgage, and received quotes from tradespeople to help forecast what you can expect to spend; however, older properties have an ability to give you unexpected costs, especially when floorboards are removed, and when pipes and wires are revealed. Build in a 20 percent cushion for unexpected costs so that you are protected from any surprises that may arise.

  How to Stretch Your Renovation Budget

Seek solution – You will invariably be told by contractors that they have hit a problem, and the only way for them to proceed is by you opening your wallet again, but this is not always the only solution, and to keep costs low, try to research solutions yourself – this will require a degree of flexibility on your part, but it will be worth it.

Similarly, if you intend to restore and keep exposed the property’s wooden floor, but find that one of the floorboards in an area that will be visible is rotten and needs replacing, you do not need to rethink your design, but rather use a floorboard from part of the room that will be covered by furniture such as under a couch, and replace the hidden floorboard with the new one. Most problems that crop up can be solved efficiently and cheaper than you first think; spend the time to seek solutions and try to resist making knee-jerk responses.

  How to Stretch Your Renovation Budget

Think of the long-term, rather than the short-term – You will make decisions for your home based on the resources that you have available; however, you must be careful of making choices that will cost you in the long term. You know the adage pay cheap, buy twice, and this is never so true as when you are renovating a house when the temptation is to focus on short-term savings. If, for example, you are choosing clapboard siding for your home, you will save money if you buy it untreated, but if you buy it already primed and painted you can expect to spend more, yet you remove the need for it to be painted in the future, and so save money in the long term. This mantra should also be carried across to the lighting within your rooms: buy lighting that’s both stylish and functional. If you, for instance, choose LED track lighting, then you can create a modern and contemporary space that’s just as practical as it is beautiful.

Renovating a property is hard work, and you will be stretched physically, mentally and financially. You may have a very clear vision of what you want from the project, but sometimes you need to be flexible with your expectations.