Remodeling a Mobile Home on a Budget

This article originally appeared on by Amy Jensen.

Remodeling a mobile home takes some planning, just as with any redesign of a home, but can save you money in the long run. Remodeling will give your mobile home a whole new look, but without the steep costs of investing in a newer home that’s already been redone. Instead, redo it yourself and create a home that fits both your style and your budget.

Planning your Budget

Before you start buying things and redoing anything, it’s best to sit down and make a solid plan. Figure out how far your money will go and if you need to hire anyone to do any big jobs, such as electrical, plumbing, or general carpentry. You’ll save money on the labor by doing jobs yourself, but you also want to make sure to install everything safely and keep it up to code. If your remodel is fairly basic and doesn’t dig into the walls too much, then you’ll have quite a bit more money to spend on cosmetics and decorations such as paint, fixtures, and trim. Plan your projects and estimate all costs before you begin. It’s also very important to have some money left over in the budget to cover unexpected costs in case small problems arise.

Shop Secondhand

To keep costs down, see what you can purchase secondhand. Many times you can find great deals at thrift stores, antique shops, and online. Craigslist, for instance, is a great local resource for everything from furniture and cabinets to paint and bricks. See if there’s a Habitat for Humanity store near you, where they sell fixtures, cabinets, lights, and all the small parts they haven’t been able to use when building homes. Cut your costs by taking a little more time to look, rather than buying everything brand new from the hardware store. That can be costly and prevent you from finding quirky items you might otherwise miss out on.

Do the Big Stuff First

When remodeling, it’s important to replace the most expensive items first before buying all of the little things you would love to add to a room. A room needs to be redone in the biggest ways first. For example, a sink and shower would come first in a bathroom—or a stove and cabinets in a kitchen. These big, staple items should be replaced first, and the small stuff can all come later, just in case funds run low or the remodeling needs to be put on hold for a while. The last thing you want to do is leave an entire room torn up for long periods of time.

Stick to a Style

When remodeling or planning a remodel, it’s way too easy to buy too many items you “could” use or to purchase them just in case you decide to use it. Before doing that, write down and keep track of all of the items you’ve purchased for each room already. Also, stick to a style. If you choose to do the bathroom in blues and browns, do not purchase decorative items in any other color for that room. If you want to have a vintage rustic style in the living room, do not buy a Hawaiian lamp to hang from the ceiling. As nice as it is to gather materials that have possibility, they can be a huge waste of money. Plan—then purchase. And stick to it.