It doesn't matter if your home is large or small. Remodeling is very expensive and the cost can quickly escalate and turn your home into a money pit.
The 1st thing you need to do is make a list of everything that needs to be repaired, refinished, or replaced. Set a budget for each item and include it in your amount per square foot budget.
Next you can eliminate all the things that you can do by yourself. You are going to pay per hour so, you wouldn’t want them to waste time cleaning up, removing obstructions, and preparing surfaces (like skim-coating walls and scraping off mastic on the floor). These are things you can do before you call your contractor.
Hardwood flooring and even some appliances can be reused. And if you need to buy fixtures and materials you can do so from savage yards where they are generally cheaper.
For appliances, you don’t have to buy expensive commercial-style ones. There are many great-looking, mid-priced appliances in the market. Just start with what you can afford because appliances are standard sizes and you can always move up later if you like.
Another trick is to renovation steps; that is if you cannot afford to do everything at once. Just be patient until you can pay cash. Borrowing for renovation can be very expensive in the end because you will have to payback with some interest. When you don’t have enough cash, places like the shower, bathroom and toilet can wait, provided they are in good condition.
Balance low and high end materials. You don’t need to use very expensive materials in hidden areas of the home, but you can be justified to use high end materials in open places like the living room to make them more attractive. You can also spend more on hardware and refinish cabinets.