Saving Money: Why I love craigslist and buying local.
This is my money saving story. After graduating college I was moved into my grandparents home. I get to stay here, and I also will be updating and improving the home for sale.
The average age for the community of 24 houses is probably 50. If is mostly empty nesters. The houses are your usual red brick, white trim, traditional interiors, crown moulding, throughout, and a vaulted ceiling. It is very important to me, to update the house in a manor that that would appeal to me, future buyers, and fit with the character of the house.
The first thing I did was take down the wall between the kitchen and living room to create an island. This was expensive, but I saved big time in the kitchen.
There is new granite counters, a Kohler cast iron sink with Price Pfister faucet, and a new backsplash.
So to conclude my tips:
FIND USED PRODUCTS. I use Craigslist. I began to post wanted ads. I got a near perfect condition cast iron sink for 60. It came with a chrome faucet that I sold for 30. I found the new faucet on CL for $60. Also, in near perfect condition. Then I sold the old sink with faucet for 40 and the counter tops for 40. You can do the math on that one! I found a person on craigslist who was remodleing. I bought their old counters and has them cut and installed to fit. *If you can haggle, by all means, haggle and barter.
BUY LOCAL- look into what natural resources or services are in your area, this cuts out the price of a middle man. It was in the kitchen forum I came upon a posting about Alabama white marble. I love it because, the veins are much lighter and not in such high contrast. Want to know the real kicker... I live in Alabama and didn't even know there was this marvelous resource in my state. I live an hour away from the mine in Alabama and picked it up at the quarry for a little less than around $6 a sq ft!
CONSIDER KEEPING ELEMENTS: I hated my cabinets. Melamine, not my first choice, but they are in good condition and easy to clean. I replaced the white knobs, with a combination of oil rubbed bronze handles and knobs. I was being a solid wood snob. But after the changes in the rest of the kitchen and the hardware change, they fit right in.
STAINLESS IS NOT THE ONLY OPTION: I kept my white appliances. They blend better into the cabinets, I hope to find cabinet facing for them, but we will see about that.. My other thought about stainless (and glass mosaic tiles) is, in 25 years, will we be looking at stainless appliances like we do harvest gold. I could be wrong. White is going to be timeless, in my opinion. I see farmhouse type kitchens in magazines all the time with stainless. I don't get it.
DON'T THROW AWAY, the things you are getting rid of. Sell it to others who are looking for what you have. You can gift to Habitat or something similar for tax purposes too. They do not use your donations directly, they sell them too.
There is a lot of bad press out there about CL. Just don't use their adult services and your odds of having a bad experience drop in a huge way!
Meet in public, and always take cash when selling, always talk to the person on the phone, or you might get no shows. It's not as scary as you think. I am a young female and I have never felt threaten or uncomfortable. Just use common sense.