Remodeling your home is a hefty financial and emotional investment. It’s also an investment in your time. So, being informed and working closely with your contractor are very important. Following are 10 questions you should ask your contractor before work begins.
1. What is the schedule of the remodeling project?
The schedule gives you a linear progress plan of the tasks and details involved with your remodeling project. More than just a start date and end date, you’ll have a clear understanding of the steps and timing involved — the “big picture”. A well organized schedule gives you benchmarks so that you know if the project is on time or is falling behind.
2. Who will be in your home every day?
Ideally, you want to hire a company that completes all of their projects with in-house employees. Who is the project manager? In other words, who will be opening and locking up, if that’s the case, on a daily basis. If the company does use subcontractors, make sure they are subs that your company works with often.
3. What steps do you take to protect my property?
This is an important question to ask before work gets started and you suddenly have workers in your home and dust all over the place. Do you need to pack items away, such as with a kitchen remodel? Are walls being knocked down?
Don’t forget about your HVAC system. If project is going to produce a significant amount of dust, you don’t want it pulled into your ductwork and circulated through your home.
4. Who is my point of contact?
Your daily contact person could be the lead carpenter, project manager or even office manager. It’s important to know who you can talk to on a daily basis if needed. You’ll also want to decide on the best communication channels, whether by email updates, phone conversations or a combination.
5. Is there any part of the project that concerns you?
Your contractor should prepare you for the “what ifs” of your project — the unknowns, which could trigger a change order such as discovering hidden mold. An experienced contractor will have a good idea of what and where problem areas are. Ask so that you are prepared.
6. What will happen if there is a change order?
Your project contract should address change orders. This includes language outlining possible changes in the scope of work, materials, labor and schedule.
7. What are the primary decision points of the project?
Depending on your project, your contractor will want your approval on certain steps and installations before moving forward. These points should also drive the scheduling of your project. Ask for a list of deadlines that will help you and your contractor stay on the same page.
8. How often will we need to meet?
This depends on the type of remodeling project you are doing. For example, if you’re installing intricate tile work, you certainly want to meet prior to installation to make sure you are happy with your choices to prevent a change order.
9. Who do I call after hours?
An experienced contractor knows that your schedule may change, too. Or, you may need to contact your contractor after hours for any number of reasons. Keep your point-of-contact person’s number(s) available in your cell and other convenient locations.
10. What kind of documentation will I receive when the project is done?
You should receive a project packet will all pertinent documentation, including end-of-project paperwork, inspection reports, before-and-after photos and operating manuals and warranty information for appliances, when applicable. Documentation should be noted in the contract to ensure you have all the information you need when the project is finished.
If you are started a home remodeling project, ask the right questions to the right company. Contact Welter Construction today for the best results!