Get Help for Your Kitchen Remodeling
Choosing kitchen remodelers and contractors for your project can be frustrating and confusing. It is hard to know whether the nice guy with the cool truck is really as experienced and dependable as his tee-shirt says he is, or if he is going to take your deposit, knock out a wall and head for a life of leisure in Brazil.
The good news is that most contractors really do want to please you and do a great job. The bad news is that a lot of them lack the experience and skills to do so. Sifting through to find that one golden kitchen remodeler that can bring your dream kitchen to life is time-consuming but the most important step you can make.
How to Find Kitchen Remodeling Contractor
The very best way to find someone to create your new kitchen, install kitchen cabinets, or add new countertops is by getting a referral from a friend who has recently had their kitchen redone and loves the result.
That is great in a perfect world but not always possible in real life. There are other ways to find remodelers that are honest and dependable.
Here are some tips
- Call the salespeople at your local home improvement store. They often know who is really good and who isn’t. This is especially good if you have used the store enough to build some relationships with the employees.
- Talk to local homebuilders. They use contractors all the time.
- Have a chat with local interior decorators. They also use contractors.
- Google “kitchen remodelers (your city)”. This is not going to narrow down the field but it will give you some names to start with. Use other terms like Kitchen Contractor, Home Improvement Contractor, etc.
- Go to local home improvement fairs and talk to the salespeople that have products you plan on purchasing. Often they have contractors that are registered with their company.
- You will find each and every well-known remodeling contractor online. Look for their details, talk to a few of them and select the one who sounds good for your kitchen remodeling project.
- If you already know a remodeling contractor or someone who has taken services of a particular remodeling contractor and is happy for the way things went, then you should prefer hiring that contractor. Besides, you can ask your real estate agent and the people who might know a good remodeling contractor.
- Before selecting a remodeling contractor, try looking at the projects they have done so far. It will give you a brief idea about the aesthetic sense of a particular remodeling contractor.
- Kitchen remodeling projects can be accomplished at different prices by different remodeling contractors. Do not hire a remodeling contractor in a hurry. Discuss your project with different remodeling contractors. Select the one who is not only licensed but is the least expensive as well and gives you the least possible estimated cost.
Don’t hire the first person you talk to. Make an appointment to discuss your needs with him and then make notes on what he says. If he quotes an estimate have him write it down, date it and sign it. An estimate is never exact but it shouldn’t be off by $10,000.00 either. Ask for references and call them. See if you can visit a home or two of recent clients and see the work yourself.
Try to speak to at least five different kitchen remodelers and get estimates on the cost. So, keep and compare your notes from each one, and be sure to jot down any gut feelings or first impressions you have.
- Is this contractor talkative and friendly?
- Do you think he seems like someone you could get along with?
- Is he paying attention to what you say?
- What is his experience?
- Does he have experience working with ay specialty products that you may be planning on installing?
- Will he get all the permits required?
- Is he licensed? Do not work with any remodeling contractor who does not have a contractor’s license. It would be problematic for you to work with an unlicensed remodeling contractor in many ways.
Choosing the Right Kitchen Remodeling Contractor
The final choice of a kitchen contractor should not just be about cost. While cost is an important consideration it means little if the job is not done properly or to your expectations.
Keep everything you know about each contractor in mind when making your choice. Then go over the notes that you made, and the responses you got to your questions. Consider what previous clients said very carefully. While one client can be difficult if a contractor has several clients that all say he is slow or doesn’t listen you should take that seriously.
Consider the finished kitchens that you saw, both in images and in person. Choose your contractor based on what you can afford and which one seemed to be the most compatible with you in most areas.
Once you have hired your kitchen contractor it is time to talk about your vision for your kitchen once again but in greater detail.
Now is also the time to discuss your house and any special considerations or concerns. Do you want the workmen to use only a certain bathroom? That needs to be discussed and made available to them. Would you prefer that they parked on the street rather than the driveway? Will you allow them to keep water and lunch in the garage refrigerator?
What time will they begin the day and what time will they end? Hence, should you keep your dog locked in the garage?
No matter how small an issue it is sure that you discuss and agree on everything involved. As always, get everything in writing.
Micromanaging your kitchen remodeler is the best way to create problems and slow him down. Resist the urge to look over his shoulder while he works. While at the same time, it is important to keep an eye on what they are doing and how how they do it and ask questions about anything that seems off to you. Like most things in life, you will need to find a balance that works.
Keep in mind that you need to make sure the completely remodeled kitchen looks good together. If you choose not to replace your appliances and they are now surrounded by a nice new countertop and new cabinetry, will those appliances look out of place and ruin the whole thing?
Also, you don’t ever need to try to put in the same kitchen you’d find in a million-dollar house – in fact, it could really make the rest of the house look sad and outdated. Not every kitchen needs to have granite countertops – ceramic tiles are perfectly acceptable, look great, and can save you a lot of money.
Finally, be creative with your kitchen renovation. You could add a chalkboard-like surface material to your refrigerator to write notes to the family. You could make your kitchen match a French cafe with a statue of a chef holding the menu for the day. Consider going with a 50’s Diner Retro theme. All the expensive kitchens have the cherry cabinets and granite countertops — be different, be innovative, and have fun!
Our articles on this topic: