Home Remodeling and Home Improvement can be a fun and exciting experience. Transforming the living spaces you are accustomed too into the spaces you have been dreaming of is a real possibility.
Not only do you get to enjoy your new amenities, but you can also reap its rewards such as improved quality of life, heightened energy efficiency, and the ability to recoup most if not all of your investment through the resale value of your home.
The economy has effected home prices, and the cost of home improvement has declined as well. There has never been a better time to dive into the home remodeling or home improvement project you and your family have been anticipating for years.
The road to a successful project begins with proper prior planning. You must first decide which area of your home is in the most need of repair. Basement finishing yields the highest resale value, return with kitchens and baths not far behind. New flooring and paint also has a huge impact and often times is more affordable than you would think.
For exterior projects nothing adds to your home’s curb appeal and value like new windows, siding, and roofing.
Once you have decided which area of your home you will be working on, the total scope of the project must be formulated.
Lets take bathroom remodeling as an example. There are many options for updating or repairing your existing bathroom. New tubs, shower base, tile flooring, wall surround, tile walls, vanities, vessel sinks, lighting, comfort height toilets, grab bars, shower doors, towel bars, medicine cabinets, storage closets, the list goes on and on.
Ohio Home Doctor can present all your options for you along with pricing so you can decide how to get the largest home improvement impact for your budget.
For larger projects such as room additions, hiring an architect to formulate an initial drawing or blue print can save both time and money. Providing a blue print to your proposed contractors can assure you are getting apples to apples estimates, and can decrease the time from selecting a contractor to attaining a permit.
The next step is choosing the correct home improvement and remodeling company for your project. There are lots of options, many good, but a lot of poor ones also. Make sure you select someone who sounds like they know what they are doing, and has the answers to your questions.
Typically when somebody knows what they are talking about, they are able to articulate it verbally. Its true some people may be talented carpenters and poor oral communicators but do not gamble when it comes to your money, family, and home improvement projects.
Get at least three estimates for your proposed project. Getting several estimates will allow you a chance to hear several opinions, and weed out the guys just trying to find there next rent check. It is very important to choose the right remodeling contractor not just the lowest price.
Here at Ohio Home Doctor we strive to be both, the right contractor, and the lowest price, but its not always possible since we always deliver top quality work.
Choosing the wrong contractor will be the most expensive route for you regardless of the initial estimate.
When you have narrowed the selection down to a couple, check out each at the BBB’s website.
Hiring a member of the BBB not only provides you with a qualified contractor but also acts as an insurance policy since hiring members gives you the consumer instant recourse in the event something goes wrong. It is also a good idea to check and make sure the company name on the letterhead matches registered business names with the Secretary of State. Hiring somebody who is not a LLC or INC can only end poorly.
Finally ask to see a copy of there business insurance and make sure the coverage amount covers your home. Upon receiving a copy it is a good idea to call the insurance company and verify the policy is current.
Some contractors pay for the initial few months in order to attain the certificate and then stop paying leaving you exposed to risk. Insurance is one of those things you hope you never need but when you do you really do. Its is worth 5 minutes to verify that you are protected from freak accidents and mishaps.
Upon selecting your contractor it is time to begin work. Make sure you schedule the work to be done during a time that you will be able to break away from your schedule to make decisions or investigate unforeseen issues.
Some people like to go on vacation while work is being done to decrease the stress level. However, it is generally a better idea to be there and available to ensure you are getting what you pay for.
If you are not available and lets say there is structural rotting which wasn’t seen pre-estimate, your contractor has no choice other then to proceed without your permission charging you an additional sum without your approval.
If you are available you can inspect the additional damage yourself and verify the additional some is fair. Often times pre-pricing is much lower than post-pricing. Also being present allows you to make minor design changes maximizing the results to your individual tastes. Sometimes small changes make huge differences and it is better if you are around to give yourself that opportunity.
Once your contractor has completed his work make sure you inspect everything thoroughly. Formulate a “punch-out list” addressing any issues you may have and give your contractor time to address them.
Finally, before making the final payment ask for a copy of the warranty pertaining to the specific project unless it exists on the signed contract. Keeping a physical copy of the warranty will make it easier on yourself in the future if you ever need to use it.