How Did You Save?

Hi all,
I am an avid DIYer and a writer for a home-improvement magazine. I am looking for homeowner "case studies" for an upcoming article I am researching about creative ways to save on a remodeling project. Basically, I'm curious what strategies you've used to bring down the cost of your reno. As an example, I eliminated materials-delivery fees by investing in a small utility trailer that I used for years to haul sheet goods, insulation, a prehung door, etc, etc. I'm sure there are many other smart money-saving ideas out there that don't compromise safety or quality/reliability over the short and long term. Would love to hear your story. Thanks,
James
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What magazine?
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No wrote:

Looks like a freelancer according to what google returns...
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Hi there, I'm working on this for "This Old House."
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They sure as h*** haven't done a show with a budget for years. Why would they want to start now? I quit watching Consumptive Old House.
Colbyt
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Years ago there was a hilarious article about what goes on behind the scenes of this Old house. A 2 month project takes 2 years and 10 times the estimated cost.....

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Jglave wrote:

What a joke. Remodels for the filthy rich.
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I saved by not buying home-improvement magazines........
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"Jglave" wrote in message

Save? Save? Well I call Home Depot "Home Deplete Your Bank Account" if that gives you an idea.
Every project I start winds up costing a whole lot more than I thought it would... (Although I like to do things right or not at all...)
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I save money by just having the lumber yard deliver the goods. Much cheaper than buying a trailer! Greg
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I haven't arranged this in my neighborhood yet (and intend to), but a friend has a neighborhood men's group of about 5-6 guys who go to each other's houses to do some project for 2 hours. My friend recently put up sheetrock and insulation in his garage. So that saves on labor, maybe on tool rental (use each others tools), but increase the beer and pizza budget.
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How's the quality, though?
Banty (who has long given up on 'painting parties')
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NOT watching those programs that show you how easy it is and how cheap you can do it helps me save money.
Steve
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Can't say; I haven't seen my friend in a couple of weeks. In my own neighborhood I'd feel confident about the quality based upon the work I've seen my neighbors do.
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Hi Kip1, that's perfect, that's exactly the kind of thing I had in mind. The whole spirit of "barn-raising" brought into the drywall age. I've done my share of drywall and though initial efforts were, uh, less than perfect, I did get the hang of it, and my most recent job looks pretty good. Now I have a full set of mudding tools to loan and experience to share, ditto for sweating copper (I can handle a broken pipe just fine now - it isnt brain surgery if you proceed carefully). There's something deeply satisfying and practical about self-sufficiency, and also knowing when its time to call in the pros. On the other hand, Banty, yeah, I've had some friends over to help paint trim and they made a mess of it. So maybe there's an element of finding like-minded, frankly talented people, and building the "reno co-op" out of them.
As for the trailer, over four years or so I made 20-30 trips for things like mulch for the garden (free at the local dump), drywall sheets, plywood for replacement sub-flooring, bales of insulation, demo stuff to the dump, fuel wood from the national forest, etc etc. It paid for itself quite quickly.
Other ideas out there?
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Owner of a house near us was a tradesman and traded talents with other tradesmen to upgrade their home to sell. Dependent on being talented and IN the trades it seems.

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Jglave, 11/7/2005, 2:22:12 PM,

Wait for a hurricane to hit your house and have others rebuild it for free.
--
"Golf is like an 18-year-old girl with big boobs. You know it\'s wrong
but you can\'t keep away from her." -- Val Doonican
  Click to see the full signature.
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The only way I have saved to redo my home is simply by using the Internet to answer basic questions on how to do stuff. Its made me more informed about job prior to me tackling them.
I did consider going to a few police DUI/Seizure auctions to get a pickup or a large van. Ultimately my wife and I had a son, so I went out and bought a "Dual Purpose" vehicle (Honda Odyssey minivan)
Didnt save me too much money, but it saved my the fustration of pull my son in and out of a cramped up car seat in the back of the car. Home improvement centers like Home Depot or Lowes offer their trucks for $20.00 for 90 minutes. You get your stuff, unload it and return it. Real nice for those messy loads.
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