Some words of wisdom about fixed prices from a contractor abroad for work order changes. I was recently asked to quote for and subsequently do a fairly small job – cosmetically tidying up a basement – building a wall across one part to create a new room, lay some flooring […]
Post Tagged with: "contractors"
Interior painters are not on most peoples speed dial as the process of painting a room is one of the most basic do-it-yourself jobs a homeowner can tackle and often times the most rewarding. From selecting the paint colors and finish to completing the paint job, you can make a […]
The new lead paint rule instituted by the EPA that requires special handling when remodeling all pre-1978 homes has now been slightly altered. Beginning today, all contractors performing renovation, repair or painting work in homes built before 1978 must follow lead-safe work practice requirements. A new EPA rule removes a […]
We just returned from Black & Decker University in Towson, MD where we were invited to attend the official launch of the DeWALT 12V* MAX Lithium-Ion Cordless power tool system. There were presentations from the design build team and representatives from engineering, industrial design and marketing all on hand to […]
This week our editor Timothy Dahl is in Dalton, GA (the unofficial carpet capital of the world) visiting with Shaw Floors. We thought this was the perfect time to breakdown the process of getting carpet bids for installation. Here’s our process. It’s nearly here. You’ve worked hard on a renovation […]
We’ve been following this great home renovation series from the Wall Street Journal as a tech editor, Julia Angwin, continues to renovate her Harlem Brownstone. This week she shares a humbling experience regarding the chain of command when it comes to a renovation. It’s a lesson learned and fortunately Julia’s […]
The only pure internet play we saw at the 2010 Builders’ Show was BidForMaterials.com. One of their programmers was on sight and he took us through the process of listing supplies as well as how contractors bid on materials on their website. Once you sign up you have access to […]
Nothing ruins a fantastic remodel more quickly than exceeding the project budget. Why is this phenomenon so common in residential remodeling? Simple: Many homeowners struggle to establish a detailed budget at the appropriate time in the course of the project. Why is establishing remodel cost one of your most important […]
The final reference you always check is your contractors’ license and insurance status. This step could fall anywhere in the sequence, but I save it for last since it is the least likely of the four steps to rule out a contractor. A simple online search through your state’s contractor […]
Ask your potential contractor for references from their last five project owners, in chronological order. This list may or may not include names on the reference list in Step 1. Call the project owners on this list if they were not on the first list. Ask them the same series […]
I find significant humor and a dash of irony in traditional reference checking, whether it be for a job application, credit application or a contractor. What is so funny, you ask? Well, 99% of the time the person (or company) providing the references stacks the list with only their favorite […]
According to the Wall Street Journal “About 600 Amish contractors or subcontractors work in at least a dozen states, a rapid increase over the past decade”. Homeowners are citing their craftsmanship and techniques used such as timber-frame building (which doesn’t use nails) as well as their timeliness and lower cost.
Pardon our Dust raises a good question about contractor markup costs. The homeowner feels 22% is way overboard but from the comments and through a bit of research it looks like 22% is actually quite reasonable. Despite what people think or talk about there is no industry standard for pricing […]
The New York Times wrote an interesting article on The Allure of the Tool Belt. We’re not so sure we agree with everything that’s been said. If a relationship is in trouble, the contractor isn’t more likely to be involved in an affair anymore than a co-worker or anyone else. […]