Monday, April 27, 2015

No Decision Yet

It’s always good to not make a decision too quickly.
We really reflected on the cost of this project over the weekend.  Is it really worth using a general contractor or would it be better to manage it ourselves?  In general, GC’s do provide a valuable survive in moving projects along, and it is certainly easier to deal with just one person.  But that comes at a price.
I think we've ruled out the second firm we met with.  They were just two expensive for what we need.  They're bedrooms, not intensive care units, for crying out loud.
I exchanged emails Sara, the first contractor we met with.  They are still pricey, but much more in line with what we’re thinking.  Our next step will be for them to walk through with subcontractors to get a firm estimate.
That’s assuming we decide not to coordinate the project ourselves.

This indecision has stretched out our timeline..  We’re eager to get it done, but there is no urgency.  If it’s done by September I’ll be happy.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Initial Meetings

We met with two contractors (independently) this week to discuss the Bedroom Project.
The process was the same with both.  We discussed the scope of the project, then showed them the downstairs areas we had already remodeled so that they could get a sense of what we like.
We went through each bedroom and discussed what are envisioning, asking for their thoughts throughout.  In addition to the things already listed, we are considering:
  • Master bedroom -- most work here.  Closet makeover, built in drawers enhanced
  • Dressing room – closet remodel, remove carpet & finish hardwood
  • Guest room – closet remodel, cabinet rework
  • Heather’s room – complete redo, maybe including a balcony.
  • Hall & Stairs – remove/replace carpet, refinish as needed.

Both of the designers were nice and seemed thoughtful, with pretty good ideas.  They both indicated hat my proposed budget was not adequate.  Both figured that they could start work at the end of June.  That timeline works for us.
The first personsaid that she would start working on the plan and if it got way beyond what I was proposing, she give me a call to revise the scope. Hopefully I’ll hear something from her in the next couple of days.
The second guy said outright that I was way off.  We discuss the project in more specific detail and discussed trimming the scope to just the Master and Guest bedrooms.  He gave us a number that he figured would be good within 10% either way.
He had a pretty good grasp of the process, but he also was higher pressure.  He wanted us to sign a contract and put some skin in the game ($2,500) right away.
I suppose we should talk with a third contractor.  You know what they say about a man with two watches.

We will discuss the whole thing tonight over dinner, and answer the big question:  Are we in?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Getting Started

2015 looks like the year to begin our long-delayed 2nd floor remodeling project.  We already did the bathroom up there in 2008 (I think), so it will only be the four bedrooms.

The project will include:
  • Refinish the hardwood floors
  • Replace doors as needed
  • Replace windows
  • Upgrade electrical
  • Replace fixtures
  • Add ceiling fans to two rooms
  • Replace carpet where appropriate
  • Paint
  • Enhance closets
  • Convert Heather's room into something to be determined, maybe a solarium.
We will do this in two phases, starting with the two southern bedrooms and finishing with the two on the north side of the house.

This is everything on that floor, so I don't think that there is a lot of potential for project-creep, but you know how that goes.

We'll meet with a few different contractors.  The first one is scheduled to stop over next week and I'm waiting for a call back from a second one.  Unfortunately the people who did our kitchen, den, and powder room are no longer in business.  That's too bad - we liked them.

This is going to be more expensive than I think, as these things always are.  But, we plan on living in the house for another ten years at least, so if not now, when?