A home renovation project can bring you many benefits and great reward now and in the years to come. When managed correctly, a full-scale facelift takes your remodel dreams and step-by-step turns them into reality. If you’re thinking, “Yes, we really need to get this kind of project moving,” then here are some suggestions to consider before leaping in.
Your plan is your road map When it comes to a serious home renovation, a “plan” is more than a few notes jotted down. Each remodeling phase will have multiple specifics that should be laid out before anything begins. If you’re not comfortable with interior design and building principles, it’s best to consult with a professional designer – or architect, depending on how extensive your ideas are – to help you formulate a workable plan.
Build a candidate list It helps to make a list of several potential renovation team members before you start reaching out. Get names from friends, family and colleagues. Referrals from people you know are usually good leads to follow. You can supplement your list by doing some online searches, where the reviews connected to service companies will be very helpful.
Get in touch When calling candidates, start narrowing it down early. Do they do the kind of work you need (building a new staircase, constructing a fireplace, installing granite countertops, etc.)? What’s their level of experience? Are they available during the times the renovation work will take place? Also ask for references. Their website might have some testimonials, but get contact information and make your own inquiries. Pay close attention to what these past clients tell you when you speak with them.
Meet the candidates Once your list contains just a few companies in each profession, the next step is to have a meeting with each of them. This will tell you a lot about the individuals’ experience and abilities, while giving you an idea of what it would be like to work with them. Your project is important, and you want to make sure you feel good about the people who will be doing the work. Expect questions, and be ready to answer them. Often, the more questions people ask, the more interested and involved they are in the process.
You’ll probably be receiving estimates from several competing companies in some or all of your project areas. The dollar figures are important, but make your decision based on estimates and everything else your investigation has revealed about the individuals.
NOTE: When hiring a general contractor, it will pay to be extremely selective and “choosy.” This person will be responsible not only for the work, but for hiring and overseeing subcontractors.
By following these guidelines and modifying for your specifics, as necessary, you’ll be on the way to a great home renovation project that will bring enjoyment and happiness for many years to come.