When you watch home improvement shows, you see how often that poor planning leads to a bigger problem. Good planning, on the other hand, pays off in faster results. It’s the same way if you are planning a big home improvement project. The changes should improve your home values, but first you’ve got to get through the process.
Even if your plan is to sell your home after renovations, there are some key things that deserve your focus. These are the subjects you should discuss with your contractor. If you do that up front, and get clear answers, then you should avoid a lot of trouble down the line.
Protection Costs vs Restoration Expenses
When choosing contractors, ask them what they do to protect your living space and your yard. Every aspect of your home may be affected by dust. This creeps into the ductwork. It makes a home in carpets and soft surfaces in the rest of the house. What will be done to discourage this? Cleaning up will be much more difficult than prevention. This could add the cost of ductwork cleaning, carpet cleaning, and general cleaning to your costs.
Likewise, if your contractor will be driving on your lawn, you can protect it. Your contractor can use composite construction mats to protect the grass. The goal is to stop big machines and trucks from leaving ruts. You want to protect your sod and turf from being stripped away. It only takes a few dozen composite mats to do the job. Restoration expenses, on the other hand, can be enormous when it comes to lawn damage. You don’t want to be paying for new dirt, new sod, and other efforts to make your lawn look good again.
If you are worried about how much the construction will harm your valuable furniture and other belongings, you can rent a storage unit. These days you can get a unit for a short period of time, one or two months. Some companies will even lend you a truck. The goal would be to put away everything that could be damaged by dust, dirt, and weather. For instance, you may want to put away your good curtains, favorite rugs, and other soft surface items. Anything that is difficult to clean, difficult to replace, or extremely meaningful is worth putting into storage until the renovations are finished.
Product Cost vs Installation Worries
Each flooring product you choose, whether it’s hardwood, tile, laminate or carpet, must be examined in advance. If you leave the final decision to your contractor, you may get a subgrade product. The problem is that all flooring looks alike to those who don’t install it daily. Your research on the subject should drive your decision.
For instance, there are many laminate tiles offered in discount stores and warehouses. The problem is that those are often thin versions of the good stuff. Why pay big money to install something substandard? It’s the same installation cost if you choose something well made.
Furthermore, you need to make sure that the product you choose stays under warranty. This means discussing with the contractor whether or not their work is guaranteed. In the end, you may decide that, while your contractor can do the bigger work, you want a specifically licensed contractor to add the flooring. Yes, this can drive up your costs, but it may save you if you there’s a problem and you need your warranty coverage.
Another installation worry is the off-gassing made by many manmade products. You are adding many new surfaces at once. How will all of that off-gassing affect you? What’s coming from the carpet, new countertops, or laminate flooring? It’s a fair question and one you deserve answers to before you let a contractor start work.
Before you sign with a contractor, make sure you know exactly what you are getting and exactly how the contractor will avoid creating new problems that will need to be solved. This is your investment, your home, and your life. Make it clear that your expectations are high.