5 Simple Ways Homeowners (And Contractors) Can Save Money On Building Materials


Building a new home can be incredibly expensive. Labor, materials, planning, construction – while all of the work put into building a new home creates a truly unique, gorgeous finished product, the sheer price of a new building project can be a real turn-off to prospective homebuilders.

And while some costs can’t be mitigated – such as labor and design – there are some great ways that you can reduce other costs, such as the price you pay for the materials used in your construction project. Doing so will require some legwork and maybe finding some unique storage ideas to keep your things safe. Whether you’re a home builder, or a contractor this can lead to a much lower overall cost of a homebuilding project.

Let’s take a look at 5 of the simplest ways that homeowners – and contractors! – can save money on building materials when beginning a new construction project.

1. Plan Ahead – And Be Realistic About Your Budget

The first step to saving money on materials is to plan ahead – and choose a realistic budget. If you don’t plan ahead, you may find that you don’t have a high enough budget for all of your required materials. Even worse, you could overbuy one particular material – drywall, for example – while lacking another, such as bathroom tile.

Any material that is purchased and not used is wasted – so minimizing cost requires waste to be reduced as much as possible. Less wasted material means less wasted money – and a lower overall project cost.

2. Watch For Seasonal Sales

Shopping for building materials is a lot like shopping for clothes. Clothing retailers will sell winter coats for huge discounts in spring – and building material stores may offer huge discounts on materials like outdoor decking in the winter.

If you’re planning a home build that is still quite far in the future, it’s a good idea to watch out for seasonal sales – you can pick up some great building materials for your project at deep discounts, and reduce the overall cost of your project dramatically.

3. Don’t Ignore Discount Stores!

There are quite a few discount material stores that sell products purchased from previous construction projects and going-out-of-business sales, or that provide factory-second items directly from manufacturers.

These items shouldn’t be overlooked when it comes to building your new home. Often, large construction projects have quite a bit of unused material that’s in perfectly good condition – tiles, hardwood flooring, drywall, windows and paneling, and other materials.

These materials can usually be purchased for less than 30% of what they would cost in retail stores – and though they may have some superficial damage, they can be used in out-of-the-way areas of your home build, and save you quite a bit of money. 

Factory seconds allow you to do the same thing. Some products that don’t pass rigorous quality inspections are sold by manufacturers to discount materials stores – a piece of wood that may have a saw mark, a sheet of drywall with a scratch – anything that can’t be sold directly to consumers.

These materials are often in great condition beyond simple superficial damage – and though they won’t win any beauty pageants, they offer you a great way to save money when building a home.

4. Make Use Of Used Material Stores

Used material stores are somewhat similar to discount stores, but they specialize exclusively in used and reclaimed materials from construction sites. The most popular used material store out there is run by Habitat For Humanity – ReStore offers vintage, reclaimed building materials at below-retail price.

It’s not just raw materials like wood and windows, though – you can often find vintage fixtures like bathroom accessories, door knobs, furniture, appliances, and much more at prices far below retail – offering you a huge variety of ways to save on the overall construction of your home.


Not only that, you’ll be supporting an organization with an honorable goal. The combination of saving money and supporting a nonprofit which does valuable work in the community? That’s a win-win!

5. Know Where You Can Save – And Where You Should Spend!

When you build a home, it’s crucial that you save money where you can – but saving money should never come at the expense of the overall quality and integrity of your new home.

For example – investing in discount, factory-second flooring for your basement is a great idea! It’s out of the way, and the flooring won’t be a structural aspect of your home – even if it’s a little lower quality than new flooring, it will get the job done.


In contrast, purchasing things like cut-rate support or structural lumber, roofing materials, or plumbing systems will certainly come back to bite you in the end – though you’ll save a bit of money during construction, you’ll end up with a home that’s prone to total failure or collapse. That’s not a good investment, and will cost you much more in the long run than simply paying a bit more for quality construction materials.

So talk to your contractor about your project. An experienced contractor will be able to guide you, and help you decide where you can use reclaimed or factory-second materials – and where only the best, most high-performance building materials will do.

Follow These Tips – And Save Money On Your Next Project

Whether you’re a contractor or a prospective home builder, we hope these simple tips have helped you as you begin thinking about your next project. While building a home is expensive, following these simple steps can help you reduce the overall cost of the project – without compromising the integrity, quality, or beauty of a new home.

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