Artwork for podcast Around the House® Home Improvement: The New Generation of DIY, Design and Construction
Big ways to save on your next DIY or Construction Project
Episode 169017th February 2024 • Around the House® Home Improvement: The New Generation of DIY, Design and Construction • Eric Goranson
00:00:00 00:41:00

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We have had a lot of requests on ways to save on projects in 2024 so we went after it with a little bit of a different angle. Catch out this budget saving episode that can really save you money if you play your cards right.

To get your questions answered by Eric G give us a call in the studio at 833-239-4144 24/7 and Eric G will get back to you and answer your question and you might end up in a future episode of Around the House.

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Information given on the Around the House Show should not be considered construction or design advice for your specific project, nor is it intended to replace consulting at your home or jobsite by a building professional. The views and opinions expressed by those interviewed on the podcast are those of the guests and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the Around the House Show.

Mentioned in this episode:

A new kind of decking and siding from Millboard

For more information about the latest in decking and cladding head to https://www.millboard.com/

Baldwin Hardware

Baldwin Hardware

Transcripts

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[00:00:23] Eric Goranson: You got all these tens of thousands of members across the U S and when they see a sale, they pick a picture, post it up. And then, you know, you have minutes to get down to your. Home Improvement Center to see if it's still on the shelf there, or maybe you're the first one to find it and you can post it up there, which is a lot of fun.

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[00:01:00] Eric Goranson: Thanks for joining us today. If you want to be a part of the show. Give me a call at 833 239 4144. That's 833 239 4144. And we might get you to be a part of an upcoming episode. Well, today I wanted to talk about how to save money on your next remodel project. And they keep talking about inflation and then you'll hear some people saying, well, inflation's going down.

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[00:01:47] Eric Goranson: They thought it would go to 24 bucks, and it went to 23 bucks, but they're saying prices are down. That's really just not the case. We're talking about, well, things are getting more expensive and staying there and getting even more [00:02:00] expensive. So today I wanted to talk a little bit about how to save money on that next remodel project.

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[00:02:25] Eric Goranson: Now, let's talk about this, and you're going to see this more at a big box store than your local small hardware store, because, quite frankly, your small hardware store is probably going to make some better decisions. But here's what happens, and nothing against the big box stores. They will come in. And let's say they have a brand of electrical cords that are extension cords.

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[00:03:07] Eric Goranson: So what happens is they'll do that a week or so before the new stuff comes in because they don't want to be out of electrical cords, right? So the new product comes in and that's what they call a reset. And so that reset is where they look at it and say, okay, now we're going to get them off the shelf.

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[00:03:49] Eric Goranson: Many times it's by what the receiving area is. They'll kind of hide it back there. And it's depending store to store, but it's wherever they can hide it. So they will throw it back in that area. [00:04:00] So what's cool with this is that's a good place to catch it. But for me, for instance, last week, I was running in Lowe's to go grab some stuff.

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[00:04:24] Eric Goranson: Now you have my undivided attention because now we're starting to look at very nice lights for 40 or 50 bucks. And so this is where you stop, take a look, read the directions. And what I do is when you start to get a crowd, I actually put them on my cart and then read them. And I'll put them on my cart there.

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[00:05:02] Eric Goranson: Put it back, call it a day. Now, here's the thing. The longer it sits there, the more discounts they get. But, I have noticed this and I've run into this in the past. Like at Home Depot, for instance. I have gone in there, wrote it out, and when it gets down to that, all of a sudden they want to get rid of it.

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[00:05:44] Eric Goranson: I can't sell it to you for a penny Even though it's marked and they would rather throw it away. So there there is a point of no return where? I've also had store managers say, Hey, I'll just give it to you. It's a penny. I don't want to, I don't want to do that. Just take it. And that's good. So that is a [00:06:00] good place to be looking for this.

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[00:06:17] Eric Goranson: So you got to be careful. Sometimes you'll see guys come in and a crew will come in and buy up all the clearance stuff and it's gone. So you have to be careful of how you play this game. It's something that's important. And you also get the surprise of going in and going, Hey, wait a minute. Guess what I just figured out this just closed out and it's even cheaper when I get to the register I've had that happen many times too.

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[00:06:57] Eric Goranson: You're like, ah, it's a seven dollar drain valve. I'll put another one on there [00:07:00] You want that manager to write that up, not as a damaged clearance, because that's probably going to void the warranty. Well, you bought it damaged. We're not going to fix it, especially if you've repaired it. I get it if it's a, a water heater that's got a big dent down the side or a refrigerator that was dropped and it's beat up.

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[00:07:44] Eric Goranson: But there is a way around that, and that is for that, that manager to write it up as a customer satisfaction discount. So some will do that, some won't. But that way you get the warranty, and especially, I see it as a problem if it's something that [00:08:00] is nearly destroyed, right? And that's not the company's fault.

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[00:08:27] Eric Goranson: I just want to make sure that, um, if you get unrelated stuff, that it's still covered. And that's nothing wrong with that, but it's up to the store manager. How they write that sale up is going to make a big difference on how it goes. So, that's a really big one right there. So, if you have them write it up correctly, or say, Hey, can you write that up as a customer satisfaction instead of a damage?

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[00:09:06] Eric Goranson: So that's another way around that, uh, and like I said, I don't want to take advantage of any of these manufacturers, but, uh, if it's something that's unrelated, I don't see I have a problem. I don't see a problem with that and how it gets written up, but, um, just use your best judgment on there and, uh, whatever works with your conscience is good.

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[00:09:42] Eric Goranson: Now, when we come back here, guys, I have another couple of secrets for you here to be careful with, and some Facebook groups that help you find these deals. And we'll talk about that just as soon as around the house returns back[00:10:00]

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[00:10:26] Eric Goranson: That is around the house, Northwest broadcast on gray television. You can catch that there. We have about 300 plus YouTube videos. And what's cool is this weekend here is the first episode of season two. So this is show 53. We have done. 52 one hour episodes in the last year, one a week and with brand new shows every single week.

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[00:11:13] Eric Goranson: That's how this one came up with so many messages that, Hey, how do we save money? And I thought it's been a little bit let's tackle this again from a different angle So we were talking about shopping closeouts in this last segment here And it's one of those things that can really save you a ton of money Now there is a facebook group and actually a few of them out there That can help you find these closeouts.

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[00:11:49] Eric Goranson: Or maybe you're the first one to find it and you can post it up there, which is a lot of fun. So, um, Take a look online. Just look up Lowe's Home Depot clearance group. [00:12:00] It's a closed group on there. And I tell you what, you will see some insane deals where stuff is 10 cents for a wrench set and some of that stuff where they're just blowing it out.

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[00:12:29] Eric Goranson: So that's not going to get discontinued. So a lot of times, there's regions like the West or there's the Pacific Northwest and California, Nevada. You'll have different groups for the different stores. And so whatever their regional management team is, that's where you're going to find that. So really take a look and then you can see what you can find there and maybe run down to your store or if you're in the store.

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[00:13:08] Eric Goranson: And we talked a little bit about it earlier as well. But if you see something that's barely marked down, you might make a note to go back and check it a few days later. If you're like, ah, that's not really that good a deal. It might be later. So set yourself a reminder for a couple days and see if it's gone down.

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[00:13:44] Eric Goranson: So you'll see him go in there and just kind of take their time on marking stuff down until they move it. And then when in doubt, if you're going to buy a, make a significant purchase, feel free to get the assistant manager involved or the department head involved and find out [00:14:00] sometimes when they're big, like a damaged refrigerator or a water heater or a big piece like that Laundry, you can get a little bit better deal by talking to the manager going, Hey.

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[00:14:30] Eric Goranson: I've gone up to that and said, okay, guys, I'll give it to you for 200 bucks and I'll take them today. Sometimes I go, just get it out of here. I'm tired of tripping over it. I don't have space for this and off you go. Okay. So give a little bit of a ridiculous low offer and then come back and figure out what your number is like an auction when you go to it.

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[00:15:10] Eric Goranson: If they want to get it gone. Doesn't hurt to ask. Be bold. Just come up. Hey guys, I want to see what I can give. I want to get this, but that's too high. What can you do? And they'll go, well, make me an offer and off you go to the races. So let that be kind of part of the fun of the sale and see what happens with that.

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[00:15:41] Eric Goranson: So I've had them for a long, long time. But one thing I say about being careful with Costco, like any of the big box stores, many times they have things that are made specifically for them. So if you see a name brand faucet, sometimes that's built a little bit cheaper. [00:16:00] Than anything else out there. But one of the rules that Costco has for people to sell things in their store, for instance, that they have to be, I think it's 10 or 15 percent less than anybody else in the market.

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[00:16:41] Eric Goranson: They'll make it cause Costco is a big enough company. They can do a special run for that. And you see that with Home Depot and Lowe's. And so sometimes you will get a lesser product than if you went and you went to your power tool store, you went to the plumbing store, the regular independent or your plumber shop kind of place.

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[00:17:16] Eric Goranson: So we were talking about the home centers and that's a great place to get stuff, but especially in closeout, but there are so many companies out there that donate products and that can be a really big deal. That's where things get donated. And sometimes companies will go at the end of the year, or end of their fiscal year.

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[00:17:57] Eric Goranson: And if I'm not in the studio, leave a message and a best time [00:18:00] to call back and I will try to give you a good call back. We're gonna be really on top of that here. We've been so busy with the TV show, but, um, I've got a new schedule here that I'm gonna be doing, so I'll have a better time to, to reach you if I'm not in the studio.

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[00:18:28] Eric Goranson: And I will help you with that as well. All right, everybody. Well, if you want to find out more about us, head over to around the house, online. com. More of how to save money on your next remodel project when Around the House returns. Don't go anywhere.[00:19:00]

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[00:19:24] Eric Goranson: You can always catch the second hour on the podcast on any podcast player. So thanks for tuning in today. We've been talking about how to save money on your next remodel project. Maybe it's a small little DIY project. Well, you're tackling a big one. This is how I find those special deals and or save money on that next project Now here in Portland, we have a bunch of different Retailers outside of our box stores and our traditional lumber yards.

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[00:20:15] Eric Goranson: And there's times I've gone in there and went, Nope, nothing today. Now, if you collect vintage tools, that's a place to go in and take a look at. I love using some of those vintage tools for my TV set, so I can put them there and it's just kind of a fun place. I'm not using them because quite frankly, tools are so much better today when it comes to power tools and things like that than they were 30, years ago.

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[00:20:56] Eric Goranson: And it is massive. It is the size of a grocery store, it seems, [00:21:00] if you look at the square footage of it. Not your big super center, but good size grocery store. And it is filled with home improvement stuff. It could have couches, they could have toilets, they could have sinks, lots of good used lumber. And they even get in some, some cedar seconds and some wood seconds, for instance, that come in the door that you can pipe babe by the, by the foot.

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[00:21:43] Eric Goranson: They have woodworking, they have DIY home improvement stuff, and then they give back into the community as well by doing projects around the community for people. That are have a less of ability of taking care of their home. So they do a lot of that kind of stuff. So that's a lot of fun. Now there's also [00:22:00] places around here.

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[00:22:20] Eric Goranson: Exterior wood decking, they buy all those closeouts from the mills and maybe a lumber supplier that had a half a unit of this color of, of tracks or whatever decking out there, and they've got it there on the shelf. So it's a pretty good deal for something like that. So it's not a bad way to go. And if you're looking just for a small quantity of a good material, sometimes that's a good way to go.

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[00:23:04] Eric Goranson: And that's not a bad place to go. Well, this, this rest of this segment, I wanted to talk about savings that don't make sense, right? Where are you, where you're, I'm going to save money right here that costs you more money in the long run. And the first one is buying cheap paint. And I'm not talking closeout paint.

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[00:23:47] Eric Goranson: So if you count your labor in it, you're losing money. So buy decent paint, you don't have to buy the most expensive, you don't have to go get the 90 gallon or some of that crazy designer stuff, but you want to get their higher grade [00:24:00] stuff. Like if you go in and say, okay, what's your top of the line paint?

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[00:24:24] Eric Goranson: That's another thing there that can cost you money. Primer is traditionally a lot cheaper than good paint. So one way to do it to cheat is to get that primer and see if your paint store has the ability to tint that. So if you're going to be doing a dark gray charcoal, and you're going to prime the room because you just don't know what was on there, or that paint got hashed and you had repairs, why don't you go have them print, tint that so it's dark gray.

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[00:25:05] Eric Goranson: So take a look at tinted primers. That can be a good deal right there that can save you some serious money. So that's one way to go. Now, another place that I don't like to see people save money on because it never saves them money is on decking. Now here's why. So people go out and spend, okay, I got this beautiful composite decking.

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[00:25:40] Eric Goranson: That if you can't sink a screw or a nail on that side of it, well, guess what? You've already basically reduced that down one lumber side as far as strength, which isn't good. And second of all, here's where people don't think about, and this is where they run into troubles. I want to say you should be putting a brand new wood underneath it, because [00:26:00] here's what happens.

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[00:26:23] Eric Goranson: So all of a sudden that deck is going to be looking gorgeous. It's going to be clean. It's going to be great. And now you've got wood failing in the structure itself. So, if you're putting in, it's, I do not recommend, unless it's just a couple years old, resurfacing a deck. Unless you're in a climate where you don't get the rain, you don't get that, and, you don't get the dry rot, and everything looks good, then that's one thing.

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[00:27:06] Eric Goranson: So if water does get down through there, or if you get leaves or pine needles or dirt that it doesn't soak in and rot that wood out. So a little bit of work goes a long ways right there on being able to do that. So take your time, get it dialed in. And you'll be good, but don't save money by going cheap on the framing.

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[00:27:45] Eric Goranson: Make sure that you've got, if they want to 12 inch on center, build it as 12 inch on center, don't do 16 on center and wonder why it looks all warpy because you didn't support those more flexible boards and what you had on there with the two by six seat or whatever else. And [00:28:00] then the biggest mistake I see people out there do is they build it with a whitewood dimensional lumber.

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[00:28:26] Eric Goranson: No big deal. But to be very careful with that in some of the used products, you wanna make sure that you can actually get replacement parts on it before you install it, so that way you don't have to do it twice. Alright everybody, we'll, we'll be right back. We're gonna talk more about those projects, especially if you're hiring somebody just as soon as a round the House Returns

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[00:29:07] Eric Goranson: show. This is where we hope to get the most outta your home through Information Education. Thanks for joining us today. We have a great interview coming up here later in the show in our number two, if you get our number two on the radio, if not, don't worry, you can get it on the podcast on a podcast player.

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[00:29:43] Eric Goranson: And so it's a really cool. It doesn't matter if you're building a home or remodeling home, they have programs for there. So we'll be talking with them later. In the show, here's the one thing we've been talking about today. And it's really important. I think, especially in today's economy where things just getting more and more expensive and that's how to save money on your next remodel [00:30:00] project.

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[00:30:23] Eric Goranson: So hiring the right contractor first, if you're going on like Craigslist or Nextdoor or Facebook Marketplace, that is where many of the scam contractors hide. And you will see their friends post up and go, Oh, hire Jim over here at blah, blah, blah. Make sure they're licensed, bonded, insured. And here's the thing.

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[00:31:06] Eric Goranson: But here's the thing. This is where some people get worried. They're like, I'm not gonna pay for an estimate. It is okay to pay a contractor to give you a detailed estimate. If they come out and say, I'm going to guess this project is going to be between 000. And you say, okay, what would it take to get a detailed estimate?

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[00:31:46] Eric Goranson: So I think it's more than fair for them to be compensated. And then you get some good numbers. You get some numbers that somebody spent some time on and that they're real. They think, okay, this is our estimate to do this. And then you can write a contract [00:32:00] around it. So, I don't want to see a bid, remodel kitchen, 72, 000.

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[00:32:32] Eric Goranson: I want to see the quality. I want to see a brand name if I can. If it's not picked out or selected, I want to see a budget. Kitchen faucet, 300. Okay, you have to go out and price that. So these are things that I want you to see on that estimate. If it's just a line number, my favorite kitchen remodel estimates are about four pages long.

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[00:33:18] Eric Goranson: But what we're seeing right now is that when housing sales and housing starts slow, we have a lot of spec home builders that are small go, Oh, we're not selling houses. So what's that mean? We're going to get a remodeling. And maybe it's been 10 years since they've been remodeling. So their numbers are way off.

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[00:33:51] Eric Goranson: What's not. And so that's a big one right there. And you get all these people that, that, um, that, that were subcontractors that are all of a sudden jumping in as a [00:34:00] contractor again. And this is where those guys kind of flood the market. So you gotta be very careful. To navigate that so make sure that you do the check on the references as well And if you can see a project, that's awesome because now you can see what they did now Here's one other thing though If you're going to go knock on somebody's door and say hey, I want to see your brand new kitchen I want you to be prepared when your kitchen is done and that contractor is left You need to be able to give that same love to somebody else.

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[00:34:46] Eric Goranson: If not, have them send you some pictures. Or take a look at it and see what they think. And take a look and see. That way you can see what the level of detail is with it. Now, there's one thing I used to do a lot of with this show, and actually I have [00:35:00] stopped doing it because I've noticed a trend. And this is by far not everybody, but there's a lot of this that happens.

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[00:35:33] Eric Goranson: So what I've had, and this has been a struggle when I go to help people out, I've tried to do some stories on it, I've tried to do some interviews on it, and it just quite frankly hasn't worked, because the people that I've helped, I go out there and go, oh my gosh, this whole house, let's say somebody spent 200, 000 on a remodel.

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[00:36:14] Eric Goranson: That 200, 000 goes in the dumpster out front. They've got to pay to get rid of that. And then they go out and try to find the next cheap contractor. And I've had this happen so many times where I'm like, okay, here is that person. And I know there's some people listening that I've probably worked with that were some of those people out there.

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[00:36:48] Eric Goranson: And that is the hardest pill to swallow. When you realize that you got taken for 200, 000 bucks and something, you're just as responsible as the people that took advantage of you. And then when [00:37:00] you have to go spend, spend another 300, 000 to fix it. You want to find it for two again, and that's why we don't really highlight those people on here because many times more than I'd like to see, they just jump in and make the same mistake again, even though they know better.

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[00:37:36] Eric Goranson: And by not doing this correctly, and you knew better, you knew things weren't going well, and you just kept thinking about the money you were saving. And then when you realize that they did it all wrong, that's going to cost you money. I try not to do that because I like to keep this show positive here. I love to keep this high energy for you guys.

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[00:38:18] Eric Goranson: So, that's the positivity we're just not going to go with, but that's why I've had a bunch of questions on it, and I figured, hey, since we're talking about saving money, let's talk about it in this show. So, let's make sure we hire the right people if we're going to do it. If not, take it as a DIY project.

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[00:38:59] Eric Goranson: And [00:39:00] sometimes more damage is done that they have to fix. So that is one thing to have that reasonable conversation with the contractor. And say, okay, what if I do A, B, and C? What if I paint the walls afterwards? Sometimes a contractor is going to say no because you're going to get paint everywhere. It's not going to look good and, and I want my name on this.

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