Big-Box Home Improvement Stores
Find a reputable big-box store that stocks attractive yet affordable materials from drywall and lumber to kitchen appliances and paints. Home Depot typically has both the variety and prices to keep your rehab under budget and looking sharp. One of the great benefits of Home Depot is their off-the-shelf products like kitchen cabinets and bathroom vanities. These cabinets will cost a lot less than higher-end alternatives but are still stylish and functional. When you are planning your rehab, try to stick to “stock sizes” (universal sizes that manufacturers mass produce) for anything that can be purchased at big-box stores. Custom cabinets and doors are often very costly, so plan your rehab with stock sizes in mind. Another option to consider from a big-box store is a store credit card. Depending on what deals the stores are offering, you may be able to pick up a store card that offers cash-back and zero-interest perks on every purchase. And if you happen to be a licensed contractor, then stores like Home Depot typically have discounts and special offers reserved for the pros. Lastly – always be on the lookout for seasonal and holiday sales.
An underrated source for inexpensive materials is your local warehouse store (like Costco). Costco has excellent deals on materials like wall tile, light fixtures, and flooring. The flooring prices are particularly competitive, with hardwood laminate typically running around $25 – $40 per box of 9 planks (over 22 square feet) – the catch is that availability isn’t guaranteed. When the materials are in stock, you should consider loading up or you’ll find yourself waiting around for their next shipment. Costco has another benefit for investors who own rental properties or plan on doing multiple flips per year – it’s core concept of buying in bulk. Investors can stockpile materials that they know they will continue to use in future properties, or for on-hand replacement materials in rentals.
Auctions can produce some excellent deals on materials from surplus drywall or trim to kitchen appliances. These auctions are often put on by auctioneering companies that specialize in building materials. The key here is to do your research before you get to the auction. Know what you want to buy and have a predetermined maximum price that you will pay for each item. Stick to your budget and don’t get caught up in a bidding war!
Partnering Up with Vendors
Wherever you purchase your rehab materials, it’s always a good idea to ask if you can establish some sort of partnership for future projects. After your first significant purchase, most stores would be happy to offer you better deals for future projects in order to keep you as a loyal, repeat customer.