Make a Budget
Making a budget can be tricky, but it helps you prioritize what you want out of your project. What are the most important aspects and features of your building? Is it your kitchen? Family room? Waiting area? Garage? Office space?
When starting to look at a new project, it's always helpful to check out retail stores and websites to see prices or estimates for countertops, cabinets, flooring, hardware, appliances, windows, doors, and other necessary items. Don't forget to factor in prices for professional fees such as engineering fees, plans, and permits.
Please keep in mind that while contractors do their best to work within a budget, there are a number of factors that can change the final price. These factors include increases in prices for materials (2020/2021 brought dramatic price increases to lumber), upgrades (switching from laminate countertops to granite for example), or unexpected hiccups such as asbestos abatement and necessary plumbing/electrical upgrades/changes.
Have a Plan
It's extremely hard to get an accurate estimate without a proper plan. A qualified draftsperson and engineer can help design your project. Permits and rezoning may be needed, so it's important to bear this in mind when looking into plans.
Choose a Company You Trust
Find a company that will work with you and provide a quality product in a timely and safe manner. New construction and renovations have a big impact on your family or business and your wallet, so reach out to family, friends, and business colleagues to get recommendations to help take away some of the guesswork of finding a great company. Some important factors to consider: is the construction company insured? Are they safe? Customers are able to visit the CSAM and WCB sites to find companies in good standing with safety compliance. A safe work site means an efficient work site.
Plan for the Interim
It's important to figure out how a project will affect you and your residence or business during completion. If a new build took longer than expected, would you have a place to stay before you move? If your kitchen was being renovated, will you be able to cook outside or is there a space to set up a temporary cooking area? If your business is under renovation, do you have a safe area for employees to work and for customers to come in?
While most projects follow their intended timeline, delays can occur. Changes to the project, bad weather, supply shortages, and unexpected problems in existing structures can delay the start of a project or interrupt it.
Remember You are the Boss
Contractors are working for you! Feel free to ask questions before, during, and after a project. A good contractor will answer questions about methods, processes, and timelines. We want you to be satisfied with your project and want your feedback.