Below are a list of great remodeling tricks or 'fakes' that can save you money:
1) Refinishing kitchen and bath cabinets – One alternative for remodeling if you like your kitchen or bath cabinets is to refinish the cabinetry. According to Michele Hernandez of Ray of Light in Tempe, refinishing can cost one-third of the price of installing all new cabinets. Your cabinets are stripped to bare wood and then painted with oil-based lacquer. Doors and drawer fronts are done at the company’s work site, but some refinishing is done in your home. Extensive prep work is done to protect all areas of the kitchen and house during the work.
2) Relining your bathtub – So what do you do about that old, banged-up bathtub when you can’t afford to rip it out and replace it? The best idea may be to cover it with a tub reliner, a durable and attractive solution that will cost about $1,500 to $1,900, less than a third of what it costs to completely replace a tub. Generally, a relining company in the Phoenix area sends measurements for your tub to a factory where an acrylic shell is made to fit on top of the old tub. After a few weeks, your finished liner is installed. The final process only takes a day, and you can use the tub almost immediately.
3) Crown moldings – Traditionally, crown molding for ceilings always used to be made of wood, but wood can be expensive and more complicated to install. If you’re doing the installation yourself, it can be a challenge. Getting the joints in the corners of the room to look right can be tough because each joint has compound angles. You might have to use a power miter saw to do the job. So with wood, a more expensive choice, you may want to hire a professional carpenter.
But the latest choices in crown molding are plastics, which can be a better, less costly alternative. Since the plastic moldings often hang high overhead, it’s hard for anyone to know that they’re not the real wood kind. They’re lightweight and also easier to install. Plastic moldings will also not warp or disintegrate when exposed to moisture.
4) Baseboards – If you’re remodeling an older home and the baseboards look beat-up, you may want to replace them. Maybe you’re not going to buy expensive high-end hardwood baseboards. But you still have choices to make. If you want to paint them, you can buy less-expensive pine or even cheaper medium-density fiberboard also known as MDF. MDF is an engineered product made by breaking down wood scraps into fibers and then using heat and pressure to turn them into things like baseboards -- and even crown moldings. Once it’s painted, no one will know it’s MDF.