For many people, remodeling projects can be overwhelming. When you start thinking about adding a bathroom or renovating your kitchen, you can easily get stressed out. Not only do you have to choose from so many contractors, but there’s also some research you must do on your own. If you have a hectic schedule, it may look easier to just put things off indefinitely and continue enjoying your less-than-ideal space.
With the right strategies, however, remodeling projects need not overwhelm you. Have a look at the following tips, and you should get everything that needs fixing fixed as soon as possible.
You’d be surprised how easy it is to fix some things around your home by yourself. Of course, there are some things that are best left to the professionals—if it looks too risky, just call for help. However, if you need to repair a light switch, or fix some common problems with your floors or walls, a simple DIY guide and a few tools is all you need.
Consider doing DIY repairs if they won’t take up too much of your time and not much skill is needed. This can be a good way to save on the costs of hiring contractors, which can be relatively high even for minor fixes. Remember, if it’s broken, you can probably fix it. So brush up your DIY skills on places like DIY Luke and other home improvement blogs.
Your first duty is to make sure you choose a contractor who isn’t swamped with work. A lot of homeowners like to do their major remodeling projects in the summer, when they don’t have to deal with freezing temperatures. What this means for contractors is that they can get swamped with lots of work throughout the summer holidays. Many of them get stretched to the limit with the amount of requests for service. Prices will often go up, so it definitely isn’t the best time for a major remodeling project.
In addition, working in the summer, for many contractors, can be a nightmare. At times, it can get so hot outside that it becomes nearly impossible to work. If possible, therefore, try to plan for your remodel when the temperatures are more tolerable and the contractors have a less hectic time. There’s a lot that can be accomplished at these times of the year, and at a lower cost to boot.
You may be tempted to just go with the first reasonably-priced bid that comes your way. It’s usually much easier that way, just like it is when checking out online reviews. But you’d be in a better position if you could get at least three bids. What’s important is that you’re able to look past the prices and focus on what the contractor can offer. You may discover that higher estimates cover for issues that may be of concern, such as insurance for dented walls, post-project clean up, and flexible working hours to accommodate your schedule. Choosing a higher-priced bid that offers such amenities can spare you some headaches.
Staying on schedule is key to staying stress free during the remodeling project. Before the project kicks off, make sure the contractor has created benchmarks to go by. Demolition, electrical work, and inspections are just a few examples of common benchmarks. Whether or not they stick to them depends on their level of professionalism, but you may want to keep them on their toes with reminders. An effective way to do this is to share a digital calendar (such as Google Calendar) with your contractor and have a look in when the benchmarks are approaching.
If you want your contractors to stay motivated and do a good job to the end, you must control the purse strings well. Avoid paying them in installments, as their motivation to finish quickly while maintaining high standards may go down. Ideally, you should pay them 50% of the fee upfront, and agree that the rest will be paid once the job is done. This kind of arrangement ensures that they’ll be motivated to finish the work as early as possible so they can collect the remaining half of the payment.