A dream of many is a destination travel event with friends, family, or soul mate. Would you just grab a credit card, go to an airport, look at all the options, and pick a flight? A few might make it work and have fun, but chances are you would return with frustrations and a big balance on your credit card.
Remodeling with a clear “Destination” in mind can reward you with improved quality of life, while staying within your budget. It starts with a realistic plan. IF you stray away from that plan, it will cost you. Staying with the plan will make your journey to the end of your Destination project an enjoyable one.
Sounds simple, right? Wrong. The basic “sticks” or lumber in your project don’t cost much more than they did 30 or more years ago…so why does a remodeling project get so expensive? Size and options. 30 years ago houses were about 1400 – 2000 square feet in size, with a simple roof, and a select few amenities. Just as all drinks are now super-sized and marketed, so are building projects. The typical home size has tripled. The larger space often is filled with website or television inspired ideas of which most are expensive. 20 years ago consumers did not have a lot of product options which helped to control costs. Now the options are endless, and vary greatly in price point.
- Start with a plan
- Make your changes on paper
- Choose your options carefully
- Review the plan
- Make your changes on paper
Your travel guide on this remodeling journey is your contractor. Look for a goal-oriented contractor that encourages open communication. Plan and price your goal, continue to make all changes on paper. All projects may have unforeseen setbacks…that is the nature of remodeling. However, once you sign on the dotted line, you either work with, or against, your contractor.
How do you work against someone you just hired? Walls are framed, and the scheduled trades such as heating, electrical, insulation, and drywall show up per the planned schedule. Maybe that door and window would look better on the other wall? Some demolition is done on the new work (with extra labor, material, and disposal cost) then all the trades need to come back when their schedule allows (with trip charges). You have just put yourself over budget, and behind schedule. The contractor and all the trades are now behind schedule, and will have to start their next project as promised, and come back to yours, part-time, to finish up…putting you even farther behind. Not a happy ending.
Make your plan. Make changes on paper. Work with your contractor, and have a happy “Destination” remodeling project!
– Jim Hughes
About Jim Hughes
Jim brings 35+ years of experience in the construction industry. He graduated from UW-Platteville with a Bachelor of Science in Construction Management and has since worked in a variety of disciplines including masonry, building, drafting, estimating, and project management. In his off-time he works on his own house and visits his home farm to help his brother.