Bathroom Upgrade: Get the Most for Your Money »
An expert in home restoration and flips discusses the ins and outs of bathroom upgrades so you can learn what works for your budge…
An expert in home restoration and flips discusses the ins and outs of bathroom upgrades so you can learn what works for your budge…
When you're short on time, squeeze in cleaning tasks that will help minimize your effort, organize your home, and remove the filth…
There are just a few more things to do before this year comes to a close. This checklist will help you stay on track and get ready for the next 12 months.
I had sewer problem which has been going on forever, so as you might guess I had several plumbers who have been charging me this and that, at the end nobody really fixed it.. I read their add in the local church bulletin, that is how I called them. So I called them and this young gentleman appears at my door - Timo was his name, he had a slight accent and yes, I kind of felt better were I got to know that he learned his trade in Germany - is not that sad? Anyhow, he maped the lines with the camera did a smoke test and showed me the bad spot. He also showed me a upcoming problem (shower was leaking into the closet). They fixed everything for a fair rate. I have been doing business myself and it is hard to gain my laurels, but this guy was extraordinary. After I had another issue with a kitchen faucet I called them again, Timo was not around so a guy name Steve showed up - same thing, in time, excellent expertises, nice guys and a fair price.
The company itself sounds very good. I signed papers on 5-20, and work was to be done 6-2 through 6-17. Work was finally completed 7-31, 6 weeks late. Barrus Solar was a sub contractor they sent to do the work. This guy was very difficult to deal with. Simple item like burying electrical conduit 18 inches below ground and this aspect of the project FAILED 3 times. Sloppy work, not supplying metal or plastic conduit in designated areas, showing up once a week to do any work, using my hand tools without my permission, etc. Quality of panels seems find at this point I time, less than a week after final inspection. BUT, please make sure they don't use Barrus Solar to do the install. There is no excuse for failing to dig a trench 18 inches into the dirt and failing 2 inspection. I lived on anxiety medications all the time this project was under contstruction
To whom it may concern, Would you like make a renovation or simply enhance your home for the summer? Well if you thought about it and answered 'Yes' then seek no more because you just came in contact with the best in Southern California “RAM Building & Remodeling Inc.” is all you need. - We are Eco friendly, - We are dependable that means less wait is required. - We are all round flexible to your needs, and Best of All… - We are fast to complete jobs and your satisfaction is guaranteed! Please Call Today for a Free quote We are excited and motivated for choosing us over other companies to enhance your home. You can call me personally, My name is Rene Mejia: (323) 4206412 President - RAM Building & Remodeling Inc. Visit us at: http://www.rambuildingremodeling.com
We heard over the news that Lee’s Glass & Hardware encountered a fire on December 30, 2012. Every time I walk into their store. I’m always greeted with a smile and helped in a professional and efficient manner and If the store does not have certain merchandise you are looking for in hand he will refer you to the nearest neighboring hardware store. I also heard Lee’s Glass & Hardware store in still in business while repairing the fire damage that took place. Our family and friends will keep you, your family and business in prayer and we pray that God not only will double your profit but provide you more customers than ever. Please help support this family owned business by staying a loyal customer and continuing to give them business. By: Loyal Customer(s)
My experience with my new home was wonderful. I would hired Architect & Builder Company and Highly recommend them to all my friends and family, just as Family Ayalas Upholstery recommended them to me and my family, Thank you Ayalas Upholstery for your advice and recommendation to call Architect & Builders, throughout the entire building process they wore very professional and timely on everything. If my husband or I would have a question they would answer it as it should be. They will have my business, and again, I emphasize on also recommending The Family Ayalas Upholstery that refer me to this company they are also such a Great and Honest Family business with excellent service. Sincerely, H & M Goldstein, Calabasas, CA
My grandparents are in love with their new patio cover. I wanted to surprise them both with an anniversary gift they would never forget. Thanks to the wonderful staff at Pacific Home Remodeling I feel like I achieved this. The whole process was a breeze and they were respectful, courteous, and always on time. My grandparents were hesitant about allowing so many people into their home, but they knew it was for a good reason. My grandparents never complained to me or the workers, so I know everything worked out well. The new patio cover is beautiful and the best part is that it will add to the value of my grandparents' home. Thank you guys for helping me surprise my grandparents.
NewVac Elevators made it possible for me to stay in my home. I was injured and couldn’t get up and down the stairs of my home and was going to have to move. I contacted NewVac Elevators and discovered that this type of elevator is different than the traditional elevators. It is the only air driven elevator, it is easily installed, affordable, safe and reliable. I also love how it makes my home look, and has become the focal point of many conversations. If you are having trouble getting around your house, or want to remodel your home, I highly recommend you take a look at their web site - www.NewVac Elevators. com
We used Gold Remodeling for some renovations we did to the apartment we recently bought. and his team expanded a closet, moved a wall, built a half-wall around our staircase, installed new floors, painted, and did the trim work, and did a fantastic job. Gold price was high however, the quality of their work was outstanding--we had neighbors asking who our contractor was for future reference. When a couple of minor unexpected issues came up, Gold went the extra mile to resolve them. We had a great experience with Gold and would use them (or recommend them to others) in the future without hesitation
These guys are great. They came out and conducted a full inspection on my home and explained the annual kWh consumed by the home and the multiple rates we pay in several tiers. What we learned was that we were in tier 4 paying $.35/kWh which was more then double what the standard billing rate is. The good news was I was eligible for a savings programs in which they enrolled me to pay $.15/kWh for all my power with $0 out of pocket. My savings program was recently delivered and set-up hassle free and I am savings hundreds of dollars a year. I am so thankful I had an energy assessment performed.
Mother purchased a fixer upper now she needed her dream focused we contacted several contractors all bids were above 120-we received a call from a pesky telemarketer talked her into taking the bid We had big doubts we meet with shieco he was full of ideas and so helpful to good to be true Hurray we got the job for 95 and it turned out well over our expectations mother is very happy with her New home we are happy they did a kitchen with real wood cabinets and thy transformed her very tiny bathrooms in to show spots I will recommend them and use them on all family projects
There has perhaps never been a better tool for do-it-yourself home handymen than the internet. With detailed instructions and videos explaining how to perform a number of common maintenance and renovation tasks around a house, an untrained homeowner might be surprised at how much he or she can accomplish with a quick search online. But even with all of this information, there are still many jobs that lie far outside the scope of most DIY enthusiasts. General contractors are there to fill in this gap.
A general contractor specializes in seeing a home remodel or repair project through from start to finish. To do this, the contractor works with the client - whether they are a homeowner or business - to nail down the scope of the work. Then he or she will turn to one or more subcontractors for specific tasks, like equipment operation, design, electrical work or whatever else is needed.
In essence, general contractors could be thought of as middlemen between a homeowner or business owner and any number of specialists. To get their money's worth, many assume they should just "cut out the middleman" and hire specialists directly, but this often proves more difficult in practice. General contractors won't be completing an entire project by themselves, but should have a long list of dependable experts who can work together and accomplish any task. They might also serve as the manager on the site of a construction project, overseeing workers and providing guidance and assistance when needed. For larger projects, though, the contractor might only handle administrative matters and employ a foreman or other professional for on-site supervision.
There are many general contractors who also specialize in certain tasks themselves. There is usually at least one general contractor on hand to organize the construction of an entire home, for example. But general contractors could also help a homeowner add an additional bedroom, build an in-ground pool or complete a major landscaping project. They could also work with a business to add or improve office space, whether that means making more room or converting a commercial building from a nail salon to a restaurant. Basically, if it's a job that involves building or repairing, a general contractor probably knows how to get it done.
No matter what the exact job may be, a contractor will probably need to accomplish several other essential tasks in pursuit of the ultimate goal, which may include:
Every general contractor performing any kind of work on a project must be licensed to do so in their state. The guidelines for the specifics on licensing vary from state to state. Some states might only require registration of contractors, which is different from licensing. Registration typically means that there must be a written record of what work is being performed and by whom, but it does not guarantee professional knowledge. Licensing, on the other hand, involves an examination process to assess professional competence.
Whether your state requires licensing or registration of contractors, there should be a record of most professionals willing to complete certain projects in your area. Check your state or county website for more information. In states that require licensing, every licensed contractor's contact information is available online or from another public source.
Not every project needs to be completed by a licensed or registered contractor. If it's just a minor job that won't take more than a day or two, and will cost less than a few hundred dollars, it's likely not necessary to find a licensed or registered contractor. However, anything bigger or more expensive, or a project involving plumbing or electrical work, needs to be completed by a licensed or registered professional.
General contractors also must be covered by an insurance policy. This should include liability coverage for any property damage that could be inflicted in the course of a job. It should also include a worker's compensation policy in case anyone is injured on the job. Before hiring a contractor for anything, ask for written proof of this insurance to see exactly what is covered.
A number of trade associations for contractors in the U.S. exist. Some of the biggest include:
Most trade associations for general contractors will provide references for anyone looking to hire a contractor for a specific project. They may also provide a number of benefits for their members, including assistance with licensing, training, insurance and business development.
No matter what you need accomplished, you want to choose a contractor who can get the job done right at a reasonable price. Obviously, this is easier said than done, but there are a few steps you can take to ensure you find a trustworthy general contractor.
The first, and perhaps most reliable, way to find a general contractor is to ask friends and family members for a recommendation. If you know anyone who has had major work done on their home, particularly if it's a similar job, ask them who they hired and if they were pleased with the result. You could also ask neighbors about who they've hired if you notice work being done on their house. Many remodeling contractors post signs in front of homes to advertise their services. As a general rule, it's rarely a good idea to hire a contractor who solicits work by going door to door.
If you are considering hiring a contractor without a personal recommendation, ask the contractor for references from past clients, and do as much background research on them as possible. Look for any complaints (or compliments) online to get a better idea of their track record. There are a number of websites specializing in connecting contractors with people or businesses who need work done. These sites may also allow past clients to submit their own reviews of the contractor.
Before hiring a contractor, make sure you are both in agreement on the project's budget. It's normal for most contractors to charge clients a premium not only for the labor expenses and zoning expertise, but for acquiring the materials as well. Be as clear and concise as possible regarding what you'll be purchasing yourself and what you will be paying the contractor to complete. Homeowners may be able to find a better deal on raw materials when they purchase these directly, but they first need to be sure they aren't buying the wrong things.
Don't forget to discuss how the project will be finalized and what will be done about cleanup. Plans for how the work site will be cleaned at the end of each day as well as at the conclusion of work need to be put in writing. An experienced general contractor should make every effort to keep the workspace clean and prevent dirtying or damaging any other area. Even so, talk with the contractor about the daily schedule, the logistics of transporting workers and equipment, and how cleanup will be handled.
As previously mentioned, you need to make sure to follow any state and local regulations regarding construction work, which includes hiring a licensed or registered general contractor. Ask the contractor for proof of their certification before signing anything, as well as their proof of insurance. You should also check your homeowners insurance policy to see if they offer coverage for contracted work. You may want to call your insurance provider and ask for more details on what your plan will and won't cover.
Perhaps the best way to feel safe about a contractor and the work being done is to hire a contractor you trust. This is why relying on personal references from friends and family is so important, and will often provide a great deal of peace of mind. If you aren't able to obtain a reference, work to conduct extensive research on the contractor as well as the work you are hiring them to perform. This should bring everyone's expectations into alignment and result in a safe work environment.
Before any money changes hands, there should be a contract to sign. Make sure the specifics of the work to be done and all costs are listed in the contract, right down to the most precise details. If you forget to have something included in the contract after signing it, there's rarely a chance of recourse.
Once the specifics of the job are nailed down, be sure to discuss the payment schedule with the contractor. This is important because paying too much up front offers the homeowner minimal leverage if the quality of work does not meet expectations or contractual specifications. Try to establish a reasonable pay schedule with the contractor, such as paying 10 percent of the total cost for each 10 percent of the work that is completed. It's a good idea to include this payment plan in the contract as well.
Finally, look into getting a lien release signed before work begins. If there is ever a dispute regarding payment over the course of the project, a contractor or subcontractor could place a payment claim, or lien, on your property. This can trigger a long legal process that may be frustrating. To avoid this, ask the contractor to sign a lien release, which is a legal agreement that states that any payment accepted is final. This can come in handy if a contractor has his or her own payment issues with their subcontractors. Signing a lien release form certifies that any payment made by a client to the contractor is enough to pay for any goods or services rendered. A lien dispute could also be prevented by performing due diligence prior to picking a contractor, as any contractor with good credit and a long track record of satisfied clients should have no trouble paying for materials and labor once all contract conditions have been met.
Once work is underway, it's never a bad idea to check up on the progress of the job, either by staying in touch with the contractor over the phone or visiting the site in person. If you work with a trustworthy professional, it's probably best to keep your distance and allow everyone to stay busy. If you want to keep an eye on things, make sure workers wear the right safety gear and that everything looks to be moving along according to schedule. Finally, once work is finished and you are satisfied, be sure to thank your contractor and tell friends or family members about your experience.