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If there’s one thing you can count on during a remodel, it’s that the project will go over budget. There are things you can do to minimize the chances of that happening and you can just add another 10 or 15% to your budget with the expectation that you’ll need it. Beyond that, it’s helpful to know what things are likely to cause your project to go over budget before you start.
Changing your mind
One of the most common reasons projects go over budget is that homeowners can’t make up their mind. The more you change your mind during the course of the project, the more it’s going to cost. Of all the things on this list, this is the one that you as the homeowner have the most control over. The first tip to avoid this happening is to do a lot of planning before beginning a project. If you’ve considered all your options, you’ll be more sure about what you’ve decided on. If a new idea does occur to you mid-project, remind yourself that you were happy enough with your original plan and stick with it.
Projects that reveal your home’s structure
Any time you’re making structural changes, it will involve tearing out drywall or ripping up flooring or knocking down walls entirely. This often leads to unpleasant discoveries like mold, water damage, faulty wiring, shoddy workmanship, or pests. All of these, will incur additional expenses you weren’t planning on. You can avoid these kinds of projects altogether and remember that ignorance is bliss, but then again, it might be nice to find out about these problems sooner than later.
Adhering to local building codes
Building codes change all the time and if you have an older home, there’s a good chance that while contractors are working on a remodeling project, they’ll find violations of that code. When this happens, contractors are obligated to address these issues or risk losing their license. These additional projects all add to the cost of the remodel.
This isn’t exactly an unexpected cost but it’s something most homeowners forget to consider when planning their remodeling budget so it’s worth mentioning. Utility bills are often higher during a remodeling project because doors may be left open to allow workers to come and go freely and the power tools and other equipment contractors will be using will draw a lot of electricity.
Another expense that’s often overlooked is the cost of boarding your pets. If you have pets in your home, it may not be feasible to keep them in the home during the remodel since their lives will be disrupted by the comings and goings of strange people and the loud noises throughout the day. If you plan to board your pets during the remodel, you need to add that cost to your budget.
If you’re remodeling your kitchen, you may not have appliances to cook at home. That doesn’t leave you with too many options. You can live on cold cereal or you can order in or dine out. These are considerably more expensive that preparing your own food so it’s a good idea to estimate the cost of dining out during the project and add it to the budget.
To avoid unexpected costs
If your home improvement budget is tight and you can’t afford any unexpected costs, you might be better off selecting projects that have virtually no chance of going wrong. You might swap out some light fixtures or install snap-on baseboard radiator covers. They’re easy, inexpensive projects you can do yourself and you won’t go over budget.
Measure the height from the floor to the top of the metal wall plate.
Follow our guide for baseboard heater cover measurement:
Any baseboard larger than 7 3/8" (188 mm) will be compatible with our standard cover.
Any measurement greater than 9 3/8" (238 mm) will fit our tall cover.
Measure from the bottom of the finned tube heating element to the top of the metal wall plate,
A measurement of 5 1/2" to 6 3/4" (140 mm – 172 mm) will fit our standard cover.
A measurement of 7 1/2" to 8 3/4" (191 mm – 222 mm) will fit our tall cover.
Measure the distance from the wall or the metal wall plate attached to the wall, to the outside of the finned tube heating element.
Any measurement of less than 3 1/8" (76 mm) inches from the wall will fit our
Any measurement of less than 3 1/8" (76 mm) inches from the wall will fit our tall cover.
EZ Snap™ Wall Widgets are used when your old or existing wall back plate has been removed or if you have to hang your new cover 1 inch or higher to bring them up to a height that will fit our installation guidelines. Just measure your overall desired height, subtract 1", drill a hole, preferably in a stud and attach it to the wall with the included screw.
EZ Snap™ Floor Fidgets easily raise your new covers ¾ inch to compensate for any ¾ inch floor (wood, tile, or other) that has been installed any time since your baseboard heater was originally installed. May be used for any reason when the overall height has been shortened and the total height is less than 7-½ inches for standard height or 9-½ inches for the TALL height EZ Snap™ BaseBoard Covers. Just use the self-tapping screws to secure them to the top of your existing wallplate.
EZ Snap™ Wall Contraptions are used when your wall back plate has been completely removed. EZ Snap™ Wall Contraptions receives your EZ Snap™ BaseBoard Cover and keeps your aluminum fin tube from sagging. These completely replace your wall back plate. To install, slide up from the bottom and make sure the top is at your desired height. Screw to the wall, then bend the front finger up to hold the fin tube in place.
Measure from wall to wall and subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 2 flush to wall end caps.
Measure the overall length of the existing unit with ends attached then subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 2 Closed or Open-end caps.
Measure from the corner to the end of the unit with ends attached then subtract ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) The endcaps can be pulled or slid ½ inch outward on either end to fit your existing length requirements. Choose 1 Closed or Open-end & 1 flush to wall end cap.
Measure the left side from corner A to corner B (see diagram). Then subtract 3 inches for the 90 degree inside corner, then subtract another ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) Repeat for the right side if also wall to wall. You need to subtract a total of 3½ inches from each side that is wall to wall. Choose your end caps.
Measure the left side from the corner of the wall to the end of the unit with ends caps. Then subtract 3 inches for the 90 degree inside corner, then subtract another ½ inch (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.) Repeat for the right side. You need to subtract a total of 3½ inches from both left and right sides. Choose your end caps.
L-Shaped outside radiators ending in the middle of the wall:
Measure from outside corner of the wall A to the end of the radiator unit with end caps attached B, then subtract ½" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Measure from outside corner of the wall to the corner of the wall, then subtract 1/2" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Left leg - measure from the corner out to the end of the radiator subtract 3" for the corner and ½ (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.)
Center leg - measure from corner to corner and subtract 3" for each corner a total of 6"
Right leg - measure from the corner out to the end of the radiator subtract 3" for the corner and ½" (to allow for wiggle room when installing your new covers.).
We recommend that you order covers a little longer than normal and cut them on site, as there are many opportunities for mistakes in measuring and installation. By cutting on site you can fit and cut to fit. The covers can be cut with a good quality jigsaw and a fine metal cutting blade.
Now that you’ve learned how to measure baseboard heaters,
you’re ready to order.