Monday, October 19, 2009

Hire a Good Remodeling Contractor

Most homeowners do some remodeling. Remodeling projects also vary widely, and can be small (like painting a room), medium (modernize the kitchen cabinets), to very large, like building a new room or prepare the basement that I may dwell.
Remodeling Steps
Set your goals.
Why are you remodeling? Need more space or just want a modern kitchen? Do you expect to increase the value of your home?

Most homeowners remodel because they want to enjoy living in the house remodeled or enlarged and not worry about their impact on resale value. However, if you are remodeling to increase the resale value of your home, be sure to see your neighborhood. A remodeling project that is not compatible with other houses in the neighborhood may not increase the resale value of yours, although you can still enjoy living here more.

Talk to a real estate agent. They can help identify improvements that could facilitate the sale of the house.
Decide who will do the job.
Some homeowners enjoy the projects they can do themselves, while others use contractors. You can save lots of money doing smaller projects yourself, but before making a decision, make sure you know exactly what they need.

An itemized bid creates the least confusion, and also allows you to pick and choose. You and your contractor should also discuss, and have in writing, how the contractor will be paid. When it comes to paying a contractor for a mid-sized job (a kitchen, bathroom or basement remodel, for example), give the contractor one quarter to one third of the total amount. If the job is progressing, follow that up with weekly installments (including materials, which are generally billed separately). Retain at least $500 to $1000 until the job is completely finished. Beware of any contractor who wants to be paid the full amount up front.

Hiring a contractor doesn't have to be scary, as long as you've done a little homework; it's worth your time. Your home is your most important investment. Treat it with the respect it deserves.

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