About Geoff Godfrey

3 Tips For A Smooth Home Remodel

by Erik Evans

Deciding to remodel your home can be exciting, but it can also be nerve-wracking. You're going to be putting a lot of time and money into the project, and it's going to disrupt your life to some degree while the work is in progress. Finding a good general contractor is a great start, but there are other things that you can do while the remodel is in progress to help your contractor and builders along. Here are a few tips that will help your home remodeling project move along as quickly and seamlessly as possible.

Move Out

Believe it or not, your absence might help more than your presence, especially if your remodel is particularly extensive. While you're living in the home, the builders have no choice but to work around you, which can create delays. During the remodel, your home may also be an unsafe place for children or pets, who may not know to avoid things like exposed wires or dropped nails. For that matter, the home may be an unsafe place for you if you're not familiar with construction sites and building safety techniques.

Plan the remodel for a time when you can be out of the house for as long as it takes. That may mean staying with a friend or relative, or working the cost of a hotel into your building budget. Try to stay in town or within a reasonable driving distance from your home, so that you can be on-site quickly in case of an emergency, and so that you can periodically check on the progress being made.

Budget for Contingencies

You already know that a comprehensive budget is a must before beginning any construction project. You'll need to plan to pay not only for labor and materials, but also for permits, plans, and engineering. However, even if you have the project planned and budgeted down to the last nail, that may still not be enough. You also need to include room in your budget for contingencies.

If you're taking out a loan to pay for the costs of your home remodel, you'll probably be required to budget at least five to ten percent of your total costs for a reserve fund. If you're working without a loan, factoring in five to ten percent of your budget for contingency fees is still a good idea. This money will cover the unexpected costs that arise in almost every construction project. You may find that the materials you wanted cost more than you bargained for, or you may change your mind about some aspect of the remodel after work begins, incurring additional fees. You may also run into a problem that you didn't know you had. For example, the remodeling work could expose worn out wiring in your walls that you'll have to replace, even though you weren't planning on it. The contingency fund will help cover those situations.

Make Decisions Ahead of Time

Of course, it's impossible to foresee everything, but it really helps if you can make most of your important decisions before work begins on your home. Whatever time you have to spend weighing the pros and cons of a particular decision is time that work on your remodel is not getting done – but you're still paying for the builders and sub-contractors who are awaiting your decision.

Before you begin work, sit down with your general contractor and ask them to walk you through some of the snags or questions that are likely to come up during the project. That way, you can take your time making the decision, talk it over with the contractor, and let them know what to do when or if that problem arises, all before construction starts on your home. You may still need to make a decision during the remodel if something unexpected comes up, but a good general contractor will be able to fill you in on the most common issues ahead of time.

It's normal to be nervous about a home remodeling job – after all, it's a large and expensive change to something very personal to you: your home. However, with proper planning and budgeting and a great contractor on your side, you'll be pleased with the end results. For more information, contact a local building company, like Superior Buildings & Design Ltd.