Are you over budget and behind schedule??
Its an awful place to be as a homeowner. The stress of the many design decisions, the amount of money you're spending overall can send any homeowner into a tail spin. And if you're not on schedule you could be wasting money for everyday that you're not complete. Bank notes charge interests on construction loans and most quotes for construction products are only good for 30-60 days. You need to grab the reins on this build fast. Here are my top 5 tips for regaining control over your build NOW!
Photo Credit: Red Door
1) First... schedule a face to face meeting with your contractor.
Bring something to write with folks. Here are the goals for this meeting. Where are we with budget? Overages and underages on the current items selected, both need to be discussed. Where are we with the schedule? Ask for a printed schedule of a chronological list of selections that need to be made based on the remaining time frame of the build. Doing this makes sure that the list will be in the order of the items the builders needs first. Most homeowners don't know the process of the build so this is invaluable info, because as a homeowner you will have time to make the upcoming selections. And if you are over budget on your build or renovation this is the perfect time to evaluate where you could possibly cut back to hit your overall cost goals.
2) Get organized.
Get yourself a basic file folder with multiple pockets. All paper work is to be stored here!... File quotes / change orders/ jobsite schedule/ photos for design reference. At the beginning of the build you think a single file folder will work, but over time you will be quickly overwhelmed with paper work. The goal is to have all your paper work in one place and filed in areas where you can reference it on the fly. Staying organized and informed will help you maintain control of your selections, upcoming needs, and overall budget.
3) Actually schedule time to make selections for your build.
Yep thats right! Upon getting your updated schedule from your builder with the outstanding items needed for the build...sit down with your calendar and actually schedule time to make selections. This sounds like a no brainer but many showrooms aren't open on the weekend and close at 5:30 or 6:00. Thats a problem..... Many homeowners want to visit several locations or comparison shop. It takes time to do that...folks! Many homeowners are stressed and behind schedule because they haven't made selections on time for the builder. For the next few weeks you need to ear mark time to actually make selections and visit showrooms. One note of advice..... for walk ins almost all showrooms are first come first served. Be sure you know the business hours of each showroom and schedule an appointment to save time and energy! And don't jump around. The builder gave you a chronological list of items needed so he or she can keep progressing. Stay in the necessary order to fit those needs.
4) Weekly meetings
I know you're super busy, but I highly recommend scheduling a jobsite walk thru with your builder once a week. Don't miss this opportunity to stay informed and engaged with your build/renovation. Scheduling the same day of week and same time helps establish a pattern into everyone's calendar. During the walk thru here are just a few of the items to focus on: progress made, where the jobsite is with the schedule, any new challenges and an new items installed.
5) Speak up!!!
Thats right.... if you have questions...if you don't understand....if you need visuals for reference, speak up! For example, in construction the terminology can be frustrating for many homeowners. Terms like header, fascia, water table can all be confusing to anyone not in the industry. Ask your builder to show you an image of the item. Many people are visual and understand once they see a photo of the item in place. Another great time to speak up is when items on site aren't correct. Ask your builder to look into it. At the end of the day, it's better to ask questions than to rip out and redo items. Your builder is part of your team be sure you are all working together for the common goal of an amazing renovation or build.