Tips from the Builder
Excerpted from Crow Point Living Magazine
With over 42 years of experience, Rob has some insight into how homeowners can avoid mistakes and get to the results they want in any home building or renovation project.
Start with the single biggest mistake people make when considering a home renovation: going for the lowest price.
Rob's suggestions to consider before signing a building or renovation contract:
(1) Qualify your bidders. Someone you know may have had a good experience with a contractor, and then you may not….so interview, interview, interview! Everyone has a budget and a good builder can get you where you want to be. A good builder will work with you, because even with a great set of plans, all the bids you receive may not be equal. If you have qualified all of your bidders, sit down with them again to review their proposals.
(2) Don’t interview the bottom line – interview the builder. Have a discussion about the process. There are so many factors that go into a project whether it is a $20,000 job or $2 Million.
(3) Does your personality match the builders?
(4) Can you reach the builder? Does he return your phone calls? What about the builder’s supervisor/job foreman – an introduction would be good (you may be living with him every day throughout the project).
(5) Visit the builder’s other work sites. Are the sites clean, well-organized and safe? This could be a very important factor if you and your family are living in the home during the renovation process.
(6) Are the builder’s tradesmen respectful to you, your family and your property? Do they show up for work every day and on time? Do they stay on schedule?
(7) Does the builder or his representatives require you to sign any change orders before they begin working on them? Are the documents clear and values stated? Is the payment scheduled tied to the work that is completed?
(8) Is the contractor’s Builders License up to date? Is their workman’s compensation and liability insurance in place and up to date?
Rob states that all of the above are part of the “insured value” of a project that almost never shows up in the “lowest” price. You don’t want your money going to pay for the last project a builder completed. Always ask questions, stay engaged in the process and communicate with your builder. A good contractor will be open to any and all communication from you. In the end, you will have a great project and strong relationship with your builder and maybe even some new friends.
Thompson Builders focuses primarily on residential renovations, antiques restorations and new builds. They also provide construction services for fire and water damaged properties and project management / consulting services for homeowners and industry professionals.