An article appeared in the Real Estate Journal today which provides a valuable lesson to home owners thinking of remodeling a bathroom or kitchen in the near future.
The author, Jeff Opdyke or the Wallstreet Journal, decided to remodel their bathroom, a project that was to be their first. They knew they wanted an Asian theme with lots of slate. What they forgot to do though was thoroughly research how much their dream bathroom was going to cost them. After all was said and done, the project ran over budget by 75%!
After watching the video Mr. & Mrs. Opdyke made of their experience, a couple things came to light which could be the reasons for their costly expense.
- They failed to research the cost of completing a “themed” project. Themed rooms always cost more. Slate tile is quite expensive, especially if you request the contractor design a pattern on the floor. Also adding unique faucets, bowls, cabinets, etc, will quickly run up the price tag.
- They neglected to take charge of the project. Once the contractors were in completing the work, the owners became doormats. Instead of telling the contractors the way it was going to be, they allowed them to dictate how the work was going to be completed. The contractors obviously didn’t stick to the budget, and if a question was raised about it, the contractors pretty much told the owners they “had” to pay the expense. What the owner’s should have done was put their foot down and held the contractors to their contract.
- It takes two to supervise a remodel. One thing I have learned through rehabbing a couple of homes with my husband, is that it works out better if both spouses are involved. In this home owner’s case, the husband pretty much took over dealing with everything and left the wife out in the cold. This mistake cost them dearly as the husband could have kept on track had he consulted with another party, his wife. My husband and I approached ours by having me in charge of the design, him in charge of the budget, and both of us making final approvals on everything in between…a sort of check and balance if you will.
Probably the number one thing to remember is to research, research, research. Look at the space you have and come up with multiple ideas on how to remodel it. Get quotes from different sources with a time line for completion. And for God’s sake, GET IT IN WRITING!