I hope you are having a great day.
If not let me guess what is upsetting you.
You are a step away from a very final effort to start the home refurbishment you planned … God knows how long ago.
And perhaps you are like other clients I met, who don’t want to design and refurbish from scratch? Perhaps you prefer to update some of the finishes and add a few new furniture items to your property.
You have just planned your Easter break away and now think it’s the perfect time to hire builders to come and paint the walls, replace the tile in the bathroom and install a new engineered floor in the living room.
It looks like a simple task, but it is not in fact.
Refurbishing an existing home is much more complicated than refurbishing an empty space. Both for you as an owner and for the building company or contractors you hired.
Because the task is not only to improve some finishes but also to preserve the ones you decided to keep.
Let’s assume the home refurbishment finishes are chosen, the furniture is picked. You’ve moved past any hesitation and approved the building quote. You are now ready for your partial home refurbishment.
Now, follow my handy 7-step guide for a worry-free project. Here’s how:
- Make sure you or someone you trust, like a relative, friend or interior designer are visiting the site weekly to inspect the progress of the work. Be sure to create a schedule for these visits long in advance as it’s tricky to find people that are available.
- If you hire a building company, be sure to ask the director how many employees he has. Be cautious of companies that hire independent contractors for your project. Their quote may be slightly cheaper, but the level of their commitment and professionalism is likely to be lower too. Also, someone will need to manage the contractors, so they deliver the project to your exacting standards. Will the director or the project manager of the building company be overseeing them?
- If you have decided not to hire a building company and are hiring independent contractors yourself, and you (or someone you trust) plan to visit the site weekly to check the home refurbishment progress – create weekly work schedules to help you stay on track and organised. If you have hired a building company and are checking the site yourself, then be sure to ask the director for a weekly outline including the following:
- Number of workers expected on site daily,
- Type of work expected to be completed daily.
By the end of each week, you will see if these expectations have been met. If not, then you can find out why and decide whether the next payment instalment should be paid.
- Make a detailed inventory of your property; what you left behind and photograph all finishes and items, so you have proof of their condition. This is very important, as builders will be moving items around, they will be installing new finishes right next to the existing ones and there is a risk of damage. You must make sure they are financially responsible for any damaged items and you will have your inventory to prove it.
- Don’t leave anything valuable at the property. If you have no place to store large, expensive furniture items then wrap them carefully yourself. Don’t trust wrapping to builders!
- Carefully read the terms and conditions before deciding to work with any company or contractor (most people only read the T&C when something bad happens). Pay special attention to the clauses explaining both your and the builder’s rights and responsibilities. If you feel you need to add something, try to negotiate and include that as an additional agreement.
- Leave at least 30% unpaid until the job is fully completed and the property has been inspected.
Are you considering a home refurbishment? Take a look at the affordable packages we offer.