You have decided to remodel your home, have hired a contractor to do the job, have plans in hand and are now ready to get started; all the hard work is now done! Well… not so fast! There is still a lot of work to do prior to swinging the hammer.
1- To Stay or Not To Stay, That is The Question.
It is not only a matter of whether you can live with the noise, debris and limited access to the home, but also a matter of convenience.
If you are remodeling a bathroom for example, and you only have one bathroom in the house, it will probably be best to find an alternate place to live during the project. There have been homeowners who have opted to stay and find creative solutions to this inconveniences such as using a neighbors restroom, however needless to say this is not the most ideal scenario for most of us.
2- Mind Your Neighbors.
Unless you live in a condominium, you probably do not need to inform your neighbors, nor do you need to get approval from them for any portion of your project, but that does not mean that you shouldn’t give them a heads up.
During any construction projects, it is almost always inevitable for there to be some sort of inconvenience to your immediate neighbors, whether it is the noise, parking, dust or even in some cases needing to go thru their property.
It is also a good practice to inform your neighbors of what to expect and ensure them that all efforts will be made to ensure they will be inconvenienced as little as possible. Many times, just giving them a heads up will avoid future headaches.
3- Be Prepared for The Unexpected.
In a perfect world, if you do all your research and prepare everything for the project ahead of time, everything will go smoothly and the project will finish within the time frame; however, unfortunately this is not the case in a majority of cases. The old saying “if this walls could talk” would apply perfectly here.
Once demolition starts, often unpleasant surprises will be awaiting just behind the walls. Anything from old wires that were just tucked behind drywall to old pipes that need to be replaced or sometimes even mold will be discovered.
Always leave a budget aside for this types of unpleasant surprises, otherwise you might find yourself having to cut from some of your wish list in order to cover this costs.
4- Cutting Cost Can be Costly.
Often times a homeowner will get quotes from separate pros for specific jobs, and will decide to hire different professionals individually to save money; our advice is, unless you have extensive experience in managing construction projects and have sufficient free time in your schedule, DON’T DO IT.
While it may seem that you will be saving money, at the end of the day it will almost always cost you. A general contractor usually works with the same subcontractors over the years, and know how to manage every aspect of the job to ensure a constant flow of work.
Managing different crews to work together and harmoniously is time consuming and requires experience to ensure the proper steps are taken throughout the project and that nothing is overlooked. Each individual trade professional, will be concerned only in finishing his portion of the job with no regards to the big picture, and that is when an experienced project manager will come in handy.
5- Your General Contractor Will be Your Best Friend.
It is crucial to hire a general contractor that fits well with you and your family. (We wrote a previous blog going in details on “How To Choose a General Contactor” http://trinitybuildersanddesign.com/choose-general-contractor/).
Stablishing an open and positive relationship and communication with your contractor from day one is crucial in ensuring that the project goes smoothly and as painless as possible. You will be seeing and speaking with this person quite often, and you want to make sure that you feel confident that all your questions will be answered at all times, and your concerns will be addressed properly and in a timely manner.