HERE ARE A FEW TIPS THAT WILL MAKE YOUR RENOVATION PROJECT RUN SMOOTH . IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS , PLEASE FOLLOW THE LINK TO CONTACT US ON OUR HOME PAGE , AND WE WILL RESPOND .
When considering your contractor , online is a great place to start . You should however , meet them in person . Whether your considering a small project to a complete renovation , you want be be comfortable with the person who will be inside your residence .
These are a must . They protect both the client and the contractor . They outline exactly what is expected of both parties . From materials to be used, to payments . If major changes are to be made , a separate change order should be put in place.
Building permits :
Any renovation which requires structural changes requires a building permit . They will issue a certificate which should be displayed . Depending on the amount of your project can also determine whether it is required . A building permit protects homeowners from faulty workmanship ( it is the minimum requirements by law ) . It is a good suggestion to insist on a building permit when considering a renovation . There typically are 3 inspections from a building inspector - #1 After framing is completed to check the structure and rough-in plumbing - #2 Pre-drywall to inspect the insulation - #3 a finish inspection after all work has been completed . There is also a separate requirement for electrical . This is a permit that can only be obtained by a licensed electrician .
There are many instances where this would apply to your renovation . If you are removing drywall , roof shingles , siding , plumbing or a variety of other circumstances , it would not be uncommon to find issues . Some may include rotten areas , faulty workmanship from a prior renovation or possibly even mold . It is very difficult to see beyond the surface materials and this would be considered " unforeseen " . Before beginning a project you should be aware this could arise and have money in your budget for this .
Responsibilities of the homeowner : Be sure to know what you are responsible for and when . Building permits , sub-trades, fixtures , paint colors, flooring to name a few . Your role is very important to the timing of the project . If your decisions are not made in a timely manner this will certainly restrict the flow of your project . Consider whether your items are in stock or have to be special ordered . You may take the role of the contractor and have to schedule the different sub-trades yourself . If your knowledge of how the renovation process works is limited , I would advise against this . Hiring a general contractor will make the process run smooth . Most general contractors have regular sub-trades they use and can count on them when they need them .
It is typical for a contractor to request a deposit to book your project . This should be written in your contact . A typical deposit would be between 15 - 20 % of the project ( Major renovation ) . Smaller projects such as roofing , siding , decks or a simple bathroom fixture replacement would be 30 to 50 % . If this a custom order , such as kitchen cabinets , 50 % would be a typical deposit. Be sure to know if this is a refundable or non refundable
deposit . It is not uncommon to be non refundable . If you are booked to begin a project , the contractor would have his crew and sub-trades dedicated to your project for a number of days or even months . Most contractors will take into consideration the specific circumstances if you have to cancel for special circumstances .
If you are doing a major renovation be cautious of someone requesting more than 20 % up front .There are many good contractors and individuals who may have good intentions , but may find themselves in financial trouble when it comes time to begin your project for one reason or another . Ex . If an individual receives a 50 % deposit from you . They are scheduled to begin your project in 4 weeks . They would typically be on another project . If something went bad on the other project , and were using your deposit money to finance that job , this could then become your problem . If you had only given them a 20 % deposit this should not affect them being able to begin and complete your project .
Payments : This should be considered the same as your deposits .
For lengthy projects it should be in your contract when draws ( payments ) would occur . This could be at different stages of the project . Ex . 20 % deposit , 10 % after demolition , 15 % after framing , 20 % after rough plumbing and electrical are complete , 20 % after drywall and 15 % upon completion . If you make payments based on completion of a certain amount of work , you are then able to control the money going out and your project will run smooth .
Start date : This also should be included in your contract .
Interior renovations should be started and completed on time . It is exciting when you are about to begin any renovation project . Most people schedule their time around an interior renovation . Be aware of your limitations and what measures you should consider before you begin . You may want to consider staying at a hotel ,friends or family during certain stages of the renovation . Demolition is typically the messiest part of any renovation . You may want to consider whether you will be limited to one bathroom or possible none for a certain period of time . Are you going to be able to cook ? Consult your contractor regarding your specific circumstances .
It is not uncommon for exterior work to be delayed due to weather . A contractor may book 15 roofs for the month of June . If we get 10 working days of rain , they may be bumped up a few days . Most contractors due take the weather into consideration over a period of time so that all booked projects are started and completed in a timely manor .
Expected completion date : This should be in the contract as well . This may change due to a variety of reasons . Some of them include : unforeseen , holdup of materials ( possible special order ) sub-trades unable to come on time . Most contractors work to meet this goal on time . Be aware that this date may be bumped . If you have special circumstances surrounding your completion date ( possibly expecting family to fly in , you may have a vacation planned ) make your contractor aware of this prior to the job beginning , they will meet their goals to the best of their ability .
Housekeeping rules :
It is a good idea to consider some "housekeepings" tips . If these are addressed prior to the beginning of the job , there will be no question to what you expect . Some may include setting a designated smoking area ( an outside deck ) , same for lunch time . Do you want the construction personal in your washroom ? Is there a microwave or fridge available to them . These are in no way the responsibility of the homeowner . If you go over some simple rules prior to work beginning , there should not be any surprises !
Alarm bells : If during your renovation you see days go by with no progress . Insist on a meeting with your contractor . Find out why . There may be a simple explanation .
If you are unable to reach your contractor by phone , leave him / her a message . My phone is on 24 hours a day ( for the most part ) I do however not answer all calls . EX. During a meeting with clients I will not answer my calls . I will however call back asap . Put yourself on the other foot . If you are meeting with your contractor , you would like to have his attention and not be distracted by phone calls .