Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Is it really that cheap?

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   Recently, and by recently I mean last week, I started watching The Nate Berkus show again. I used to enjoy Nate's designs and ideas when he would come as a guest to the Oprah show, and when he got his own program, I tried to catch every episode but then life kind of got in the way.  It's been a year. Then last Monday I decided to start watching it again.

    On that very episode he had two very frugal designer girls who, from what I understood, are pretty frequent on his show. So he gave them an assignment to decorate the whole room for $250. It's not surprising that they went to a thrift store. They bought  a couch,a dresser, lamps, chairs, side tables, you name it. And they only spent $248.50. They did an amazing job, the revealed room looked absolutely stunning.

   What bothered me a little though is that the $250 did not include the price of any materials they used. From my own experience, I can say that almost every DIY project we started  in this house turned out to be way more expensive than we planned it to be. I can probably count on my fingers the amount of projects that went smoothly from the beginning and did not require us to spend any extra money.

   On the show the girls painted,primed, waxed, re-upholstered, stenciled, added new cabinet pulls and other hardware, decorative pins  and did a million other little things that made the room look beautiful but did not come cheap. Just a few examples of prices (based on Home depot website):


   Behr Premium High-Gloss medium base interior/exterior paint 1Qt- $13.96


   3-pack paint roller covers- $8.34

   
Zinsser water-based all-surface primer 1 Gal.-$18.97 


   Minwax Polushades stain and polyurethane 1 Qt.- $12.87

    It all adds up!! DIY projects can be very rewarding, unique and even save you a load of money ( if you make a knock-off from Pottery Barn catalog) but they do require lots of planning. And be very generous with your estimations for all those decor flops and extra trips to the hardware store.

   And wouldn't be nice if Nate told us how much those remodeling projects really cost? Do you hear me, Nate? Love your show, by the way :)

   Did you ever tackle a project at home that turned out to be a lot more expensive than you planned?



 

16 comments:

  1. I think it always adds up to more. Right now we are getting ready to do the living room but because of the bathroom flood have to spackle and pain with kilz first.

    Then there are the little things like paint brushes, rollers..all of that. If they are going to do a show like that they need to do the true cost

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    1. That's what I believe too! They did a great job, no questions about it. But for somebody like me, who is trying to learn from them, it would be nice to see the actual cost pf a project.

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  2. You are so right, the little things really do add up!! The other thing is I don't have a staff to do all the work!! Ha,

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  3. Yes once you get started, those "extras" always seem to pop up !

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  4. I agree! Eventually if you paint/repair a lot, like we did/do, you just have that stuff on hand. BUT it took time and money to get us there.

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    1. I know the feeling :) I have tons of different things here too :) But I still end up buying something every time we tackle another project :)

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  5. EVERYTHING always seems to cost more than you expect, because either something goes wrong or you didn't really know what you were doing and forget to factor in the cost of . . .

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  6. Following back and looking forward to it!!!

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    1. Welcome :) Glad to see you here!

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  7. Those shows of course aren't going to show you the true costs because if they did, most people wouldn't even attempt the projects.
    They are all about, "Look what we did for X amount of $s, aren't we great."lol
    And if they did attempt to give you a cost, it would be shewed anyway.
    These shows have sponsors....companies that sell products. The executives decide what shows people most likely to buy their products will watch and then they go and pay money to advertise on and/or get their products used on these shows. So if say, a paint company sponsors Nate's show and a DIY project comes up involving paing, they will use the sponsors brand of paint....and they get free paint to do the DIY on the show. They don't care if it's cheap or expensive because they aren't out any money for it.
    To do a true cost, they'd have to disclose all the stuff they use that they got for free, which wouldn't give you the actual cost for you or me to do this project.

    Besides DIY home interior is NEVER cheap as you think, the same as home repair is never as cheap as you think it will be.
    You can only hope it's cheaper than paying someone else to do it for you.lol

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  8. We have found that our projects ALWAYS cost us more than we thought. Sometimes a lot more! Lena, I have nominated you for the versatile Blogger award. Please stop by today to check it out :)http://www.familyhomeandlife.com/2012/06/versital-blogger-award.html

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  9. Paint alone is pricey. I tend to buy the primer/paint and that is $30-$40 a gallon! I think you can do an inexpensive DIY project...but I think they need a fellow couponer/haggler to do it. Also thrift stores are amazing, but garage sales I think would be even more frugal! Interesting article though I think a lot of shows do the same thing,and don't include the supplies.

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    1. I think they just hit the thrift store to do it quicker. They bought everything in one place! But I think they would really benefit from a fellow couponer on the show :)

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