by Don Vandervort, © HomeTips
Most remodeling projects—even those that come off without a hitch and on time—are stress-producing. And when things don’t go smoothly, it can be a living nightmare. You can’t control unforeseen calamities, but you can take steps to reduce the day-to-day upheaval:
• Plan ahead. There’s no excuse for living with a hole in the wall because you didn’t order the window in time. Failure to make important decisions far enough in advance is the number one progress killer during a remodel.
• Schedule your project around extreme weather. You don't want to have the roof torn off in November. And do not get your heart set on hosting Christmas dinner if, say, you started a major kitchen remodeling project in October.
• Don't go out of town. You do not want anyone else making decisions for you, and work can stall if you are not watchful over your project’s progress.
• Go easy on your nerves and plan to be elsewhere when work is exceptionally noisy or fumes are noxious. Keep children away from areas that are under construction—hazards are everywhere when work is ongoing.
• Make sure you have the phone numbers and contact information for all the major players on your project, and make sure those people have all of your phone numbers, including home, work, and cell. Impress upon them that you are only a phone call away and would rather be called if there is the slightest doubt about anything than for them to guess at the answer.
• Draw up and put in writing house rules regarding the use of bathrooms, phones, the refrigerator, whether or not pets are allowed outdoors, and other issues of this type.
• Be sure all work areas are sealed off from the rest of the house with plastic sheeting and, if necessary, protect floors from construction foot traffic.
• Regardless of how much you trust your contractor and subcontractors, store all valuables off of the premises for the duration of your project—a variety of workers will be coming and going from the project. If you must give out keys and alarm codes, consider having your locks and combination changed after your project is finished.
To get free recommendations for top-rated local contractors, call the most reliable and comprehensive referral service, HomeAdvisor, at 866-350-2983 (toll free).
© 1997-2011, Don Vandervort, HomeTips.com