Whether you are purchasing your first home or considering some updates to the home you are living in, I strongly recommend spending the time up front with a remodeling consultant. He or she will not only guide you through the process but can help you see the overall picture from start to finish. An expert can guide you in the most cost effective way to add on to your home, what project to start with, how a project can be done the most cost effective way , why it is important to hire licensed trades, why you need to make sure those trades have insurance and what a fair contract should contain. These are just a few reasons to take the planning stage seriously but allow me to give you an example of an issue I encountered on a past sales call.
I visited a client and spoke to her about a long list of projects she wanted for her home. Before I quote a job I to bring my licensed subs over to view the mechanicals, specifically, the electrical panel, and the heating and cooling units if the customer is considering an addition. This also allows us to uncover any hidden surprises. So on my next visit the electrician and I went to the basement to check out the electrical panel and immediatly discovered that the previous owner had wired up the house with lamp wire. Not only is this not to code but we couldn’t go a step further without giving the homeowner the bad news. At that point I sat down with the owner and explained the importance of taking care of the wiring issue first. She then agreed to work with me on a long term plan for all the improvements the house would need in the coming years. I gave her an idea of the cost involved in each of the projects she was considering. I helped her understand what projects were best for a future resale, etc. She was relieved to know that a potential disaster was going to be avoided and and she was happy to have an overall plan for the projects she envisioned as well as what the costs may be.