Learning Center Article

Article: Home Improvement Remodeling, Projects That Pay Off

So you may be planning on fixing up your home or even adding an additional room. The home remodeling process offers you the opportunity to upgrade the appearance and long-term value of your home. Remodeling is a great way increase your home's value and help make it the dream house you have always wanted. This is especially rewarding when you are able to get a good return on your remodeling investment (return on investment) and ultimately recoup your investment when you sell.

Prescreening the Contractor

Now you are ready and you need some help. The first step to a successful and satisfying home improvement project is finding a competent and reliable contractor. It is important to find a professional that you can trust, is experienced, and will meet your expectations for price and reliability.

If you need help, we have found a great place to Find a Contractor through www.ReliableRemodeler.com. Their free service is as easy as 1.2.3, and results in up to 4 local contractors providing you with free estimates. They handle all of the prescreening and contractor validation.

real estate tip You simply fill out a simple form explaining your project.
real estate tip A representative will contact you within 24 business hours to verify receipt of your project request and clarify any details about your project.
real estate tip They prescreen contractors who specialize in your specific service need in your geographical area, and only setup estimates with contractors who can best meet your needs in terms of price, value, and quality. Even small jobs need careful planning and attention to detail.

Projects Pay Back Factors

There are many influential factors that ultimately determine how a particular project will pay back value, including the type of homes and market forces in your local area. For example, say homes in your local area normally have two bathrooms and sell much quicker and for more value than your one bathroom home, it may be advisable to go ahead and add a second bathroom. In this situation, the ROI (return on investment) would likely be greater than spending those funds to add on a third bathroom to a home with two.

Be sure to consider is the cost of the improvements and labor. If you have the skills and can do the work yourself (done correctly up to building codes), you can save significantly on the overall cost of the project and greatly improve the chances of getting a good return on the investment. Also, home remodeling builds equity, with the capital gains being deferred till the property is sold.

Types of Remodeling Professionals

Trade Contractor: Trade contractors are experienced trade specialists that perform a core type of construction service. Know as sub-contractors and exampled as: heating and ventilation, plumbers, electricians, carpenters, etc.
General Contractor: Manage and coordinates the project and trade contractors to build a property according to the specs or provided. General contractors are usually the right choice if your project was designed by an architect or designer and requires multiple trade contractors.
Architect: Architects plan, design, & supervise the construction of buildings and real estate projects. Designs detailed floor plans and blueprints that contractors use to build a project.
Interior Designer: Plans and designs interiors of spaces ranging from residences and commercial buildings. Selects fixtures, furnishings, floor plans, and handles furniture placement plans.
Landscape Architect: Landscape architects design exterior spaces and select plants and tree, including placement of such.

Know the Red Flags

Be sure you know the types of red flags to look for. Good prescreening will weed out the less than reputable contractors. Below are some key items to be wary of:

written quote is not provided or unprofessionally prepared
says cash job only
skips building permits
asks for any money up front
has no references or the ones provided don't check out
knows cheap places for materials
is not listed in yellow pages
pressures for a quick decision, and says they will be too busy otherwise
if they solicit from door-to-door

Get Quotes

Of course, you cannot rely on just one estimate for any job. Get a few, or whatever it takes, to get comfortable with what is involved. The higher the complexity and cost, the more bids you should get. Be sure you understand what is included in each bid so that you can accurately compare (apples to apples!). You need several detailed written quotes and not just off-the-cuff estimates. A good builder would prefer detail anyway, as it provides them time to really think and plan the job, detail materials, and workflow steps.

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