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Planning process decoded...part3

Posted on 21 November, 2014 at 0:55 Comments comments (199)

Hiring the right Pro’s

Plan your Renovation!



Finding the right Pro’s to do your renovation is half the battle won!

We have decoded what the key responsibilities of the pro’s you are contemplating on hiring are so you know what to expect



An architect will develop a design, refer you to contractors, help you select a contractor, and oversee the construction to make sure the plans are followed. On large jobs, the architect's fee usually is a percentage of the construction cost. On smaller jobs, the architect may charge an hourly fee. Some architects will work on a consulting basis -- creating finished plans from your sketches or shepherding plans through the engineering and approval process.


Once you have an architectural plan, the contractor makes it happen. The contractor reviews the drawings and specifications, providing a cost estimate to you and your architect. Then, the contractor's crews -- or subcontractors he or she selects and supervises -- tear out old components, move and upgrade the plumbing and electrical systems as necessary, and complete the new construction.

On most jobs, contractors charge a fixed price; changes are estimated and billed along the way. If you want more flexibility to design as you go, time-and-materials payment (a running tab of labor and materials charges) is an option.


Design-Build Company

These one-stop companies provide both design and construction services. Some have staff architects, and others supervise consulting architects they've handpicked. Most design-build firms have their own carpentry crews, but schedule subcontractors for the plumbing and electrical work. A benefit of design-build firms is that they keep communication simple: From design through completion, you're dealing with just one company and one team of individuals who are used to working together. Most designer-builders charge a design fee up front, but then credit it to the price of the job if you hire them to proceed. Often, the design-build approach costs less than the architect-contractor arrangement.


Interior Designer

Don't make the mistake of hiring an interior designer only at the end of the project to select finishes and furnishings. The designer's role varies, from making product recommendations to drafting layout plans and helping you make smart decisions about allocating your remodeling dollars.

The designer may also help choose a contractor and oversee construction. Consulting designers charge an hourly fee. Those who have bigger roles may charge a flat fee and/or a percentage of the cost of products purchased.


So how do you go about choosing the right people for the job? Here’s a simple six point questionnaire that you can use to narrow down you search


• They are experienced in renovating the rooms in your plan. How long have they been in business? How long have they been doing the type of work you want?

• Their references are good. Call references and ask questions about communication, workmanship, reliability, and responsiveness.

• They have the required credentials. In most areas, contractors must be licensed.

• You like their work. Look at pictures. Visit recent jobs comparable to your planned project to assess design and craftsmanship. Visit not-so-recent projects to see how they've held up.

• You trust them. It's essential to have a contract specifying exactly what will be done, the payment schedule, starting date, target completion date, warranties, dispute resolution procedures, and so on. But you should also feel as though you could trust the person with just a handshake.

• They "click" with you on a gut level. Don't underestimate your gut feeling. You have to have open, comfortable communication with the people remaking your house.


Always ask for references, and to avoid the why didn’t I ask before remorse and guilt, arm yourself with these questions to get the necessary confirmation from the references:

• Were there any surprise costs?

• Was the professional flexible?

• Was he or she willing to make changes as the project went along?

• Were subcontractors or crew members pleasant to do business with?

• Were your needs and wants taken into consideration, or were they simply glossed over because the pro considered him- or herself the expert?

• Was the paperwork in order?

• Are records complete?

• Did you have any problems after your renovation project was complete? Was the person quick to fix them?

Now you are fully equipped to hire the right pro’s once you have hired them don’t be intimidated voice questions and concerns, although your professional team brings valuable expertise to the job, the final decisions should always be yours.






Planning process decoded...part2

Posted on 21 November, 2014 at 0:55 Comments comments (1)

With home renovation, the secret of success lies in careful planning based on a solid understanding of what you want to achieve. This includes having a clear focus on what must be included in your project, as well as any other features you would like to include, if your budget allows.


In many cases, the final design and specifications for the project will be worked out with the help of a renovation contractor, designer or architect. However, the more information you can give them, the better they are able to provide you with good advice and accurate cost estimates.


What does this information consist of? Here's the list that most renovation contractors recommend:

• A clear description of what you want to change in your home and why-in order words, what's the purpose of your renovation?

• Specific goals for your renovation project.

• A list of future changes you anticipate in your life that could affect what you need in your home.

• A definition of priorities - which renovation items are must-haves, and which ones would be nice to have, but are not essential?

Once you have completed this pre-planning, you'll be in a much better position to ask a professional renovator, designer or architect to develop specific plans for your project. The time and energy you invest in this renovation homework can make a real difference in terms of the success of your project and your ability to keep within your budget. Remember that most renovation problems are a direct result of poor planning. So to put things in a nut shell:

• Planning is the Key

• Budgeting

• Intelligent Buying

• Don’t Over Do

• Strategic Spacing

• Little Things for Big Result

• Prior Permissions

• Bit by Bit


Planning process decoded...part 1

Posted on 21 November, 2014 at 0:50 Comments comments (1)


So you have a dream, a vision of how you want your castle to look like… that’s a picture perfect start for your renovation project, for a story book ending make sure you have your planning down pat!

Let’s walk you through step by step.

The two things you need before you begin your new construction/renovation are:

Time! Don’t rush things planning is probably the most important stage so take your time to avoid pitfalls later.

A plan. We list down a few pointers on coming up with the plan that fits your needs to a T.


1. Talk with your family. Discuss what each of you want

2. Look at how you live and where you spend most of your time.

3. Reflect on the homes you have visited and list down the features that appealed to you.

4. Consider floor plans that allow for maximum ventilation and light, while blocking out direct harsh sun light, going green saves you considerable money on utility bills.

5. Build for the future, envision growing into your house, make allowances for the house to adapt to your changing needs.

6. Hire US to personalize your building plan and come up with a custom design!

And there begins a journey to a happily ever after in your dream castle…..