Archive for June, 2009

Finding a Contractor

June 26, 2009


Your choice of contractor is the single most important decision you will make during the course of your home restoration or remodel. You will essentially be recruiting the person who will enter into your private living space and serve as your right hand for several months. 


At worst, a contractor will take your deposit and never begin work on your job. At best, a good contractor will at least perform the work according to the direction you give him and finish the project. Unfortunately, the majority of contractors will err on the side of low follow-through. It may take several months to find a contractor who shares the same sense of urgency that you do.



Preventing Household Accidents

June 19, 2009

If you have you ever left your home with the dishwasher or washing machine running, you might want to think twice before doing it next time. According to the Insurance Information Institute, billions of dollars in insurance claims are filed each year due to household water damage. Water hoses break; appliances malfunction. It happens all the time. I never used to shut my water supply off during extended travel, but I sure do now. And I also discovered the “water sensor.” For a couple hundred dollars, I’ve had water sensors installed on the floors of my bathroom and kitchen. If water should trip one of the sensors, it will activate my security system with a call into the central office. It’s not perfect, but after what I’ve been through, the peace of mind is worth every penny.

The Contractor Interview

June 12, 2009

A reader commented that the recently-posted reference screening questions were helpful to her. So I thought I’d follow up with a recommended list of questions for the actual contractor interview! As mentioned in earlier postings, you should treat the contractor hiring process as seriously as you would if you were recruiting to fill a position at work.