Myths About Home Addition and Remodeling Costs

Don't fall for these common misconceptions.

Chicago home addition and remodel

Finding a general contractor in Chicago that you can trust can be difficult, especially when it comes to finding quality service at a reasonable price. Leader Builders Corp. is a qualified, transparent contractor that will make the process straightforward and easy! Throughout our experience, we’ve encountered a handful of myths regarding how much a home addition or remodeling project will cost.

Myth 1: You’ll get a rock-bottom price by first hiring an independent architect to make the drawings, and then getting bids from builders.

Architects are exactly that: architects. They are not trained to factor budgeting into their projects and you could end up falling in love with concepts that will end up costing you a lot more to bring to fruition. Plus, by the time you learn the project is over-budget, you will have already spent money on the drawings. At this point, you’ll have to pay for another round of drawings, with no guarantee that this time, the project will be in-budget.

If sticking to a budget is important, consider design-build instead. A design-build firm like Leader Builders starts by asking you your budget and then provides you with a detailed estimate so that you know what your project will cost - before you even invest in drawings.

Myth 2: If you plan to remodel no matter what, you should buy a house that is in bad shape to save money.

If you’re in the market for a house and are considering two houses that are equal in square footage, but one is in bad shape, you may be tempted to buy the less expensive fixer-upper. You may reason that you’ll be remodeling regardless. Depending on the neighborhood, you may spend 20-50K less on the fixer-upper. But when it comes time to remodel, you’ll learn that the difference in cost between remodeling a house with bad bones and a house with only a few areas that need attention is significant - perhaps in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Instead, consider a “vanilla box” house with many features you can live with, but one particular area that needs an upgrade, such as the kitchen. Bring your favorite remodeler with you to look at your home candidates and let you know what to expect. Or, if you don’t have one yet, select a reputable company and give them a small deposit (usually 1-2K) towards the project, in exchange for them coming along. A decent remodeler will be able to give you a ballpark estimate of your renovation costs and let you know about some possible additional upgrades that might be required by your municipality, such as a water service or electrical service upgrade. Don’t hesitate to ask this of a contractor - we love showing off our knowledge and helping our future client make the best decision for their family - just be fair and hire us for the project once there is one!

Don’t settle for a general contractor in Chicago that is less than what you deserve! Contact Leader Builders Corp. to work with a group of dedicated, trustworthy professionals for your next home addition or renovation.