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Are you building a new home or making renovations to your existing home? You are probably realizing that there is a lot of planning and preparation that goes into these things. Here are 5 basic questions that you should ask your contractors before getting started in order to prevent feeling unprepared:

  1. What Will the Schedule Look Like? You will want to discuss more than just an end date, too. When will certain tasks be happening and when can you expect big sequences and deadlines to occur, like tiling or countertop installation? If you have an estimated schedule, you will know immediately if things are starting to slip by a day or more and can address it accordingly. Some projects rely quite heavily on proper scheduling, like kitchens and bathrooms, as different elements will need to be properly in place before the next step can occur. Along with knowing the schedule, you should ask who will be on site every day, so that you know who to contact in the case of an issue or question.
  1. What Can You Do To Protect My Home? Ask this question right away to prevent any unpleasant surprises concerning large messes or irreversible damage. Will the construction area be sectioned off, for example? Will plastic be used to protect furniture and appliances from dust and damage? What about more delicate items like books, linens, decorative wall art, and so on? Make sure you have a detailed explanation for protective measures before any work begins.
  1. What Happens if an Order Changes? Be sure that any contractor has a process for noting and confirming any order changes. Often times, changes (new or differing supplies, different time frame or scope) can be simply documented in writing and signed by both the contractors and the client. This conforms that there is no miscommunication. How will the contractors inform you of any potential changes? It’s important to ask what the best method of communication is: Who you should contact with any issues? Email or phone? Day or evening? Can I reach you after hours?
  1. How and When Will You Reach Me If A Decision Needs to Be Made? And how will you track and confer on these important decisions? A list, spreadsheet, or jot-notes on a calendar can be great ways to keep track of decisions that need to be made – and when they need to be made by. No matter what method you use, the important part is that the contractor gives you clear and direct instructions about important decisions that you will need to make as the project advances. It’s also important that the contractor lets you know when and where you should be available to meet them, which you can then make room for in your own schedule to prevent any mix-ups or delays.
  1. What Documents Are Provided Once the Job is Done? Contracts will generally specify what type of documents you can expect to receive: inspection reports, marked-up plans that take into account as-builts on utilities like plumbing, lien releases, and so on. Is there anything else that you would like for your own records? If so, be sure to specify what. Operating manuals for installed appliances and equipment, all contractor and subcontractor contact information in case an issues arises, and other items might make your “must have” list. Be clear about what you need and follow up immediately if you don’t receive it in a timely manner.

RJS Stone Tops is Vancouver’s premier home renovation specialist when it comes to your kitchen and bathroom countertops.  Our crews are professional, clean, and reliable – just read what our customers have to say! We have been helping home owners build their dream kitchens/bathrooms for over 30 years – you can trust us to get the job done right!