This is a guest blog post done by Kathi Fleck. She is the co-owner of LoneStar Property Solutions. You can read an interview that Design Build Planners did with her here.
“Hire a contractor who listens to you.” – Kathi Fleck, Renovate, Remodel…Relax!
When entering a remodeling contract, it’s important to hire a contractor that listens to you. This is your home and the end result should be something you’re happy with. There are other things you can do to smooth the process, as well. Use the following tips for a more successful remodel.
Communication is Vital
The number one key to being successful with any major project is communication. If you establish good communication from the beginning, this will minimize issues later down the road. As mentioned above, a contractor who listens will be more effective at getting the job done. However, communication does go both ways. Make sure that you listen to their perspective to ensure you’re getting what you requested.
Comfort Levels Matter
Be comfortable with the contractor you choose to work with. It’s great if you can use a contractor on recommendation. However, be sure that you are as comfortable with that contractor as the person who recommended them to you. Get to know your contractor and be sure you’re both on the same page for a smoother, more successful remodel.
Pay Attention to Paperwork and Agreements
Paperwork and agreements may sound boring to some. However, they are vital for a successful remodel. Review the contract closely to be sure everyone is on the same page. It’s important to agree on start date, schedule, budget, and desired end date. A good contractor will be as concerned about these aspects as you are. Be sure to request written correspondence for any agreements or changes.
Change Order Requests
If you have to make any changes, get those change order requests in as soon as possible. This will help prevent work from being done more than once and cuts down on costs. The sooner your contractor knows about any new ideas, the better. If you wait too long, it may no longer be possible to incorporate them into the plan without spending more money to start over.
View Your Contractor As a Professional
Remember that your contractor is an expert at remodeling homes. That’s why you chose that specific person to do the job. When you trust the professional to do what they know (with your concerns in mind), you’re more likely to have a successful remodeling experience. Respect should go both ways, of course. Things should be discussed among all involved parties and handled with a mutual respect for the best results.
Remember that changes can and do happen during the course of a remodeling project. Certain ideas may not work within the planned design, due to price, size, etc. Remaining flexible can help you get the look you want in a more timely and less stressful manner. The final result should be one you love. However, being overly choosy can cost you both time and money. Besides, once it’s finished, you may discover you like an alternate option better than the original one you had in mind.
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