We’ve all spent more and more time in our homes over the past few years. As such, the to-do list of projects you’ve wanted to accomplish may have grown just a little bit. Whether you are thinking of tackling a small job or something much more extensive, there are a few questions that you’ll want to ask when choosing a company for your home remodel.
Here, our team outlines the important questions to ask before you get started:
Is the company licensed and insured?
Homeowners often assume that just because a company “looks” official, they must be official—but just because a company has a logo on their truck doesn’t mean they are licensed and insured. When scoping out a contractor or construction company, it is crucial to verify their background. A reputable company will gladly provide the receipts for everything from their business license to the amount of insurance they carry.
Even if you have your own homeowners insurance policy, you’ll want your contractor to carry protection for themselves, their employees, and your home. This will cover any damages or injuries that might take place during the remodel process, as well as keep you from having to file a costly claim against your personal policy.
Can I speak to previous customers (and are they satisfied with the work they received)?
If you stumble upon a contractor or company with no one willing to vouch for their work, take that as a red flag and run far away. Anyone that does quality work leaves behind dozens of satisfied customers who are willing to sing their praises. Ask for references from previous customers who have received similar work or head to Google to look up reviews from former clients. They should be willing to recommend the company to a friend and warn you of anything there may be to worry about.
How long will the project take?
Home remodel projects run the gamut for how obtrusive they can be to your day-to-day and the impact they can have on regular life. Do you need to plan to shower or cook somewhere else while the project is underway? Will the noise of construction keep you from working from home, and if so, how long should you expect to have to modify your remote work setup? While you may not get an entire bathroom renovation completed in a single day, obtaining a reasonable, projected timeline and expectations for how long a project takes to be completed can alleviate some of the impact on your daily life and keep your stress levels down. Ask in advance to avoid any surprises down the road.
What will you do to ensure the project stays under budget?
If there is one thing that is always true in a home remodeling project, it’s that most projects cost much more than you expect. The cost of materials may change over time, but a good construction budget should allot for some wiggle room. While things can come up, it’s important to work with your contractor to choose finishes, materials and even labor costs that can be accommodated with the budget you have in mind. A good rule of thumb is to allot 5 to 10 percent of your expected project budget to construction contingencies.
Are my project goals reasonable?
If you are considering a project you’ve been researching for months, it’s likely that you have lots of design inspiration to take into account. However, if you have champagne taste on a smaller budget, there may be some compromises that need to be made to make sure that everyone is happy with the outcome. For example, if your expectations include high-end finishes or materials, can you go with alternate materials or does the budget need to be adjusted to accommodate those desires? It’s also good to keep in mind that Rome wasn’t built in a day and good work takes time. Speak to your contractor about your expectations and consider their input to your timeline and budget when planning your remodeling project.
Is there a warranty for the work?
The last thing you want to deal with after a project is complete is have to go back and redo the work. Not only can this be expensive, but it’s also time-consuming. However, sometimes products or materials do not hold up as expected. If this happens, you’ll want the company you used to stand by their work. Ask about whether the work is under warranty, whether followup work that may be needed is covered under that warranty, and how long warranty work typically takes to be completed.
Start Your Home Remodel Project with Lynch Design | Build Today
The value you can get out of a home remodel project is truly limitless. At Lynch Design | Build, we’re passionate about working with Maryland homeowners to bring out their home’s potential. To talk to us about building the space of your dreams, contact us today by calling 410-879-5510.