A kitchen or bathroom remodel is an exciting experience. You're chomping at the bit to revitalize your fatigued and frumpy cabinets and fixtures. But don't get so carried away with enthusiasm that you make these rookie homeowner mistakes.
1. Guessing How Much to Spend Before Hiring Your Contractor
Not planning your expenditures for a trip to Disney World would be bad enough, but failing to set the financial limits on a remodel could leave you with a half-finished job. Because the costs can range anywhere from developer-grade basic to billionaire lavish, you need to budget according to your means. Decide your maximum budget, cut by 20 percent then use that figure as your top amount for the contract. With any remodeling project, surprises will pop up, and seldom do they erase costs off your bill. The 20 percent decrease should cover any reasonable unforeseen changes.
2. Assuming the Tradesmen are Perfect
When was the last time you created something complex from scratch and achieved utter perfection? Right. It didn't happen. Remodels comprise a lot of moving parts, fitted carefully together by humans using human-made tools. Of course, you will choose a highly-skilled contractor with years of experience who will work to the most exacting standards. However, construction, and particularly remodels, always end with some minor flaws, no matter what. It's best to realize this in advance since nit-picking tiny, unavoidable flaws usually result in hard feelings and no deductions from your final bill.
3. Trusting the Contractor to Choose Your Designs
If the process of choosing your, cabinets, countertops, flooring, appliances and lighting overwhelms you, know that you must still make the choices. You never want to leave these important details for your contractor (or the contractor's spouse) to decide for you. What if their idea of a perfect color scheme turns you avocado green? They don't want that responsibility anyway. Only you can find the colors, textures and features that please you the most. Rather, ask for suggestions from the remodeler, but you must always make the final decision.
4. Choosing Slick Rick, the Low Bidder
You should always get at least three bids for your job based on the same plan. If one estimate comes in at an eye-popping low price, pry your jaw up off the floor and consider why that is. If you've done your duty in vetting your contractors with the BBB and other reliable sources and have chosen reputable businesses, it's possible that the low bid was due to an honest calculation error. Be sure to question the contractor about it. If you hire the business without granting the opportunity to correct a mistake, once the contractor discovers it, many complications in the contract will arise, and lawyers may come into play.
But worse, if the contractor initially stands by the price, you better figure it to be a bait and switch offer. If you even see a workman after paying your materials deposit, whatever work ensues will likely be without a permit and substandard. Or else, the contractor will "find" all types of problems that must be corrected first, at extra expense, before the job can continue. The bottom line — honest remodeling bids are going to come close to each other in price when comparing apples to apples. If you think you'll save several thousands of dollars by taking the low bid, you're likely to end up paying more.
The final result of a remodeling project should leave you sighing with joy, not slapping your forehead. We know you want the most for your money, so start with a free in-home consultation with Kitchen Tune-Up. Click or call us today!