If there is an industry where the saying “You Get What You Pay For” has ever been true it is the remodeling industry. We all want our homes to be beautiful and inviting but how we get there is a mixture of good stories and absolute nightmares. We all want to get a deal on something, just look at the success of Groupon. However, where remodeling services are concerned the term good deal should come with a major disclaimer.
When you remodel your home it is not like buying furniture pieces or some other accent piece that will you display. The quality of the finished product is solely determined by the experience, knowledge, and skill of the tradesman performing the work and the longevity and strength of the remodeling company. Nobody would like for their doctor, auto mechanic or chiropractor to go out of business and so it should be for your remodeling contractor. You can always get a better deal, but the question is should you when dealing with the remodel of your home. This is not to say that you should pay anything or be gouged by your contractor but you definitely get what you pay for
Homeowners can hire day laborers to complete a lot of project around their home, and yes they will get a deal but the risks are extremely high from a finished product, safety, liability and warranty standpoint. A lot of homeowners don’t truly understand what the real cost of the “deal” they got actually is. If you think it is expensive to remodel your kitchen, think what it would cost to do it twice. Let’s be honest, the construction and remodeling industry does not have a good reputation. There are many fly by night companies that simply print business cards, put a magnet on their truck and call themselves a contractor. These people are quick to offer you a good deal but its the homeowner who is left holding the bag at the end of the day.
These fly by night contractors are here today and gone tomorrow because they truly do not understand what it takes to run a remodeling firm. They do not understand what a successful business model looks like, they don’t properly account for costs and find themselves out of money before the job is done. They also search for and source other fly by night firms to subcontract to in order to fit into their cheap budgets. They begin to rob Peter to pay Paul and the death spiral begins, one-speed bump in this scary business model and their customers are stuck with an unfinished job and mounting costs.
Succesful remodeling contractors take into account construction, direct and indirect costs and have a firm grasp of what their daily overhead requirements are when completing estimates. They write proper construction contracts that detail what is included and what is excluded. They carry the proper amount of general liability insurance. They have sub-contractors that deliver a quality product each and every time. The offer a warranty that is proper and they honor it. They take the time to get to know their clients and educate them on the process. Their pricing models are the same regardless of the customer. Consistency in operations and delivery models is paramount as this streamlines the work and provides a level of predictability.
You can be absolutely sure that a properly run and managed remodeling firm is going to cost more than a day laborer and the provider who is quick to drop his price just to get the job. As a homeowner, you want the project completed properly and to your satisfaction. You also want the remodeling firm to stick around as you may want a future project done. You want the remodeling firm to be around to honor the warranty on the work they did for you and you want the remodeling firm to have quality subcontractors.
When planning a project, take the time to get several bids from reputable contractors and choose one that has a firm understanding what it takes to properly complete the work and honor the warranty. Do not let your quest for a “good deal” blind you to the realities of this industry “You get what you pay for”