A reasonable budget is a great place to start. We recommend the 50/30/20 approach: allocate 50% of your income to things you need, 30% to things you want, and 20% to savings.

It’s also a good idea to keep a contingency fund for those unexpected expenses. But how do you stay within your budget when purchasing tile?

Plan Ahead

If you’re renovating your forever home, flipping a house for profit, or simply redecorating to add personal touches to a space, one of the most critical aspects of the project is your budget. No matter the reason, it’s vital to determine a targeted budget before you begin your search for tile and other materials.

This will allow you to narrow your options and avoid considering tiles that may push your project over budget. Creating a list of must-haves and nice-to-haves is also a good idea, which will help you prioritize your changes.

Another essential factor to consider is the color of your walls and the existing fixtures. This will help you narrow down your choices and choose a palette that will complement your existing design. It’s a good idea to bring a paint sample and a few photos of the room you are working on to help you decide. If you have questions or need advice, a tile expert can assist and refer you to a local installer if necessary.

Don’t Overspend

When you shop at a designer tile outlet, you must have all your measurements and a basic idea of what you want so the salespeople can’t “upsell” you. Generally speaking, the salespeople at these outlets work on commission, so they are more motivated to sell you higher-margin options.

If you buy too much tile, remember that returns aren’t always easy. Many retailers have stringent return policies, which can be an added expense on top of the tile you’re purchasing.

To help you avoid overspending, consider making a spreadsheet listing tile prices, shipping and handling, and extras. Then, compare prices to see which retailer is offering the best deal. Additionally, pad your renovation budget with a 10% buffer in case of unexpected costs. This is especially true for larger projects like bathrooms and kitchens, which are the most costly finishes to complete in a home. You might need to pay for these large projects for plumbing, electrical, and other unavoidable expenses.

Look for Discounts

For a project like tiling a bathroom or kitchen, homeowners usually turn to big home improvement retailers. These stores are convenient, offer a wide selection of tiles, and often carry all the tools and materials necessary to complete a tiling project. But to save money on your project, consider purchasing your tiles from a wholesale outlet.

For example, some tile retailers offer discounts on all their products, usually $7 per square foot but is currently on sale for $5 per square foot. The company also offers clearance deals and regularly hosts seasonal sales events.

Another thing to remember is that while you’re likely to find more affordable tile at a discount outlet, you’ll have a more challenging time finding the exact color and design you want. This is because the tile batches sold at discount outlets vary from store to store. Buying from a brand that produces tiles across multiple locations will ensure you get the same batch.

Order Samples

If you’re a homeowner shopping at a tile outlet in Chicago, ordering samples first is essential. That way, you can get a feel for how the tile will look in your home and see how it interacts with other decorative elements like paint on the walls and furniture. You can also observe how the color of the tiles changes throughout the day and under different lighting conditions.

A reputable online tile retailer will offer full-size swatches, usually ranging from 3” x 3” to 4” x 12”. Samples can help narrow your options, but they’re not always enough to give you a complete picture.

For example, Bedrosians has a vast selection of ceramic and porcelain tiles. They even have a tool that allows you to place virtual samples in your space. And their swatches are big and durable. Plus, they’ll ship them to you for a reasonable price. That’s much better than lugging around a box of tiles to your home! They’re an excellent choice for homeowners who want to find the perfect tile for their budget.

Ask Questions

Purchasing tile at a discount store can be a great way to get the look you want for less. However, like any other home improvement project, asking questions and knowing what you’re getting into is essential. For instance, tile dye lots may vary from store to store, and this can cause color consistency issues in your completed project. Also, consider shipping and handling when comparing prices, as these costs are where the retailers make their profits. Be mindful of these factors, and you’ll have no regrets about your tile budget!