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CONTROL THE SPENDING ON YOUR HOME BUILDING PROJECT



CONTROL THE SPENDING ON YOUR HOME BUILDING PROJECT

How to Control How Much You Spend

There are four key remodeling cost drivers that impact how much you need to spend when undertaking any remodeling project: The design of the remodel, the materials you use, who manages the project, and how you pay for it. This article focuses on where you can save on project management, and three different options you should consider.

When it comes to project management of your remodel, you can:

Hire a general contractor
Manage the project yourself
Hire a fee-based project manager

General Contractors.
General contractors will do the project management for you and usually do some of the work themselves. Often, the general contractor will do the framing, install the doors and windows, do the finish work, install fixtures and then subcontract with others to do the rest of the work.

General contractors typically will provide a fixed bid for your project based on their management of the job and subcontractors, and may charge you additionally for time and materials for the actual work they perform. They will include in their fixed bid a fee for their management time, and possibly will mark up the subcontractors fees to cover their own time to manage the varie163Dty of subcontractors activities. They will also take care of paying all the subcontractors, so instead of writing twenty checks, you only have to write one, to the general contractor. To better understand the costs of employing a general contractor, try the Manage it Myself option in the Remodel-or-Move Calculator at www.remodelormove.com. You can also gather information on your remodel at www.remodelestimates.com.


Manage the project yourself.
Just like a general contractor, whose primary duties are to coordinate the activities of the remodel and make decisions on your behalf, you can manage the project yourself. Even if you hire a general contractor, you will be required to make most of the decisions, so doing the task coordination is a natural offshoot of decision making. Even if you dont have construction experience, there are resources available to help along the way.

The more important question to ask yourself is do you have the time and interest to take on and complete this project? It can take an hour or two each day to keep on top of things, make timely decisions, and follow up on the phone. If you have other things you would rather do, then you should probably hire a general contractor. If you dont enjoy learning new things or the stress that comes along with hiring and working with subcontractors, then you should definitely hire general contractor. However, if you have good people skills, strong organizational abilities, and most importantly, the time — then being your own project manager can be a fun and rewarding adventure.

A critical component of managing any remodeling project yourself is finding and hiring good, reliable subcontractors. With a big project, this may take more time than you can budget. If you consider that you may need six or more different skilled subcontractors (electrical, plumbing, drywall and texture, etc.), you will have to interview quite a few people before picking the right person or company for each task, and evaluate at least two estimates from each one. This is where networking helps.

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