Save or Splurge?

Knowing when to splurge and when to save will help you make room for those nice-to-have items, while ensuring you have all that you need.

One of the first questions you can expect to be asked by potential builders is, “What’s your budget?”

You’ve likely already crunched the numbers and know what you can afford. You’ve also likely scoped out ideas for your new home and started a wish list – perhaps with a few things on it that could stretch your budget. Knowing when to splurge and when to save will help you make room for those nice-to-have items, while ensuring you have all that you need.


Windows and insulation

Choosing quality, energy efficient windows and insulation will make your home more comfortable – think cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter – while saving you money on your utility bills. Those savings will soon add up, meaning more to splurge on elsewhere.

Electrical, plumbing and gas lines

Maybe a finished basement isn’t in your budget now, or you’re thinking of adding a sound system a few years down the road. Getting the electrical, plumbing, and/or gas hook-ups in place now – when your house is not in its finished stage – will save you money in the long run and avoid the need to turn your home into a construction zone (again).

Storage space

This goes for your garage, pantry, mud room – wherever you store your belongings. Storage space is not something you can easily add after your home is built, so it’s a good idea to budget for the storage space you know you’ll need before your home is finalized.



There are nearly endless flooring options nowadays, and many of the budget-friendly options are in close competition with their pricier counterparts. Laminate and vinyl flooring can easily imitate hardwoods, although they offer more durability and a lesser price. Your builder can help you select an affordable option for each area of your home.

Lighting fixtures

Fancy lighting fixtures are nice to have, but not a need-to-have-right-away. As long as the wiring is in place, fixtures can be upgraded at any time.


Marble and quartz countertops are eye-catching additions to any home – but so are laminate countertops that are made to look like marble or quartz. File countertops under the nice to have, but not need-to-have-right-away list.

A good builder will always keep your budget and lifestyle in mind when making recommendations as to where you can save or splurge. Choose someone who understands your needs and has your best interests at heart, no matter what your budget. 
Keith Sawlor Sawlor Built Homes Custom Home Builder in Nova Scotia

Keith Sawlor

Keith Sawlor is the second generation Owner of Sawlor Built Homes. With more than 35 years experience building custom homes in Nova Scotia, Keith has built a team that mirrors his professional knowledge and values.

Keith is a Certified Residential Builder who is also certified with many leading industry organizations. He is a Passive House Institute US (PHIUS) Certified Builder, a Net Zero Energy (NZE) Certified Builder, a Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) R-2000 Certified Builder, and a Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS).

Keith is a Board Member of the Atlantic Home Warranty Program as well as the Canadian Home Builders' Association Nova Scotia. He is involved in many other industry programs and associations, such as the Canadian Home Builders’ Association National, Safety Services Nova Scotia and Better Business Bureau.

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