In my cost overview I nattered on about Dreamweaver’s standards compliance and Frontpage’s lack thereof. There are a number of reasons this is important, and The Dollars and Sense of Building to Standards summarizes them nicely.
Jeffrey Zeldman lays it on the line in 99.9% of Websites Are Obsolete. I’ll go out a little ways on my limb here and call that the most influential web design article ever published. Read it, and then ask yourself if you really want to pay someone who thinks standards don’t matter.
Designer Douglas Bowman famously calculated how much bandwidth Microsoft could save by redoing its home page — just the home page — using web standards. You won’t ever get that kind of traffic, but part of your hosting cost is a bandwidth allowance, and reducing your file size will help keep you from exceeding it, even if you’re Slashdotted.
The Web Standards Project is a good place to read up on the subject.
More on this when I get around to do-it-yourself tips. I have one more big cost-related rant first: what to look for in a professional designer.