Are you planning a kitchen renovation? You may be surprised to hear than, on average, a decent remodel could cost over 5 percent of your home’s value. Many homeowners spend a far higher percentage. Given the large investment involved, you need to be sure that the renovation will add more than it cost to your home’s value. Choosing the right firm is essential so here are five tough questions that should help you pick the perfect one.
#1. How Many Years Have You Been In Business?
It’s hard to tell from a firm’s website just how established they are. Some firms exaggerate the amount of experience they have. For example, a firm might say ‘20 years experience in the industry’ but they were only founded three years ago – how is this possible? Well, they might simply be listing the combined experience of their employees, or they might be counting experience in other trades such as plumbing as renovation experience. Always check to clear up confusion and find out how long the firm has been trading for under the current name.
#2. Can I View Your Portfolio?
A good way to cherry pick the best firm is to ask to see their portfolio. Established firms will have a long list of satisfied customers willing to give them a decent referral. Some firms will even let you visit another one of their projects under construction so you can get a sense of how efficiently they operate.
#3. What Insurance Do You Have?
Professional renovation firms should be fully insured to oversee projects. The firm should have a general worker’s insurance policy to cover the health and safety of all staff on site and a general liability insurance policy. You should check the following two things. Firstly, when carrying out work they should add your homes to their liability policy as an additional insured. This ensures that accidents are covered by their policy, not your home insurance policy. Secondly, firms that outsource work to contractors try to get away with just having the contractor’s insurance. Make sure the renovation firm keeps your home properly insured while carrying out work.
#4. How Do You Manage Your Renovation Projects?
This varies between companies but there are some key positions in good management structures that are common. You can get a sense from a company’s answer to this question whether they run well-managed projects. Typically, firms should have an onsite senior project manager to give site supervision and daily communication with customers. This position will be responsible for ensuring that all building codes are adhered to and permits cover the work done by the contractors. There should also be management of the trades and supplier relationship and work schedule as a successful renovation depends on multiple contractors and suppliers working together seamlessly.
#5. What Guarantee Do You Provide?
All renovation projects run into difficulties, the key is how the company deals with them. Check that the firm you hire offers appropriate guarantees for the work they carry out. Custom renovation firms specializing in home design in Calgary should fully guarantee the quality of their work.