An excerpt from and article appearing in Remodeling Today
Choosing the right professionals is more than just finding the remodeler or decorator with the lowest price. It is even more important that the company you choose to work with is the right company for you.
There have been a number of articles written and various publications that tell you how to choose a remodeler. In this article the focus will be on choosing the remodeler who is right for you so that you, your family and your home will have a positive experience. Yes, I said “your home”. Depending on the project you plan, the life, health and safety of your home may be one of the most important considerations in choosing a professional remodeler.
The following discussion is not meant to replace the basics in choosing a remodeler, but to help you go beyond the basics in your selection process.
It is important that you are fully aware of the differences between contractors. Unfortunately there are still those who ignore the rules because it is easier and cheaper to do so. People tend to think that nothing can happen so why worry. But the big question is what if something does go wrong. The other question to ask yourself is if the contractor is ignoring the law what else might they be ignoring. It is important that you realize you have very little protection if you do hire an unlicensed or uninsured contractor.
Keep in mind that a professional remodeler will also use professional subcontractors for electrical and plumbing work. Obviously, you want a safe electrical installation. You also don’t want a plumbing mess to handle, especially water damage to your newly renovated home.
A key aspect in choosing your contractor is communication. Depending on the size of your project you could be dealing with your contractor for an extended period of time. Therefore it is critical that he is willing to listen and communicate… Both you and your contractor must realize that this is your home and your project.
Rather than focusing on price negotiations, I suggest that you and your contractor focus on creating your dream for your home. Keep in mind that this renovation, whether small or large is something that you may be living with for years to come. You certainly don’t want to have any regrets or wish that you had done it differently. The small amount that you save now may not be worth it in the long run. By communicating with your prospective remodeler, together you will be able to make your dream a reality.
Lorraine Hart is the president of Ideal Consulting Services, a consulting firm with offices in NY and Texas. Lorraine is a past president of the NYC, Long Island Chapter of NARI.