Have you ever been to a museum and felt like you were afraid to touch anything? Or you move with extra care because you didn’t want to break anything? It can be a little stressful, especially if you have young kids running around. That’s kind of what it’s like working inside peoples homes. We want to respect your property but sometimes it can be difficult. The following guide is what you can do to help mitigate that added stress for you and us.
You have signed the papers and paid the deposit...now it is time for your remodel to start. But, before the remodel can begin, there are some things that you need to do to prepare your space. I'm going to cover the most important things you can do to help make your remodel start and run smoothly throughout the project. If you were to ask any contractor what happens when a project starts out on the wrong foot, they will tell you that you will have problems with the job the whole way through. Call it Murphy's Law, call it whatever you want, but that's always what seems to happen. It’s extremely important to start the job the right way and when that happens, you typically have a great experience throughout the whole project. Let’s learn how to make that happen for you!
One of the first things you're going to want to do is to get all your personal items out of the area. Depending on what type of project it is, for example, if it’s a bathroom, you're going to want to get all your personal items out of the cabinets, out of the closet and off the counter. Even if you're not replacing the vanity you still want to get all of your personal items out of the cabinet. This is mainly just because of dust getting into those things. You want everything completely out of the room, not just moved to one side of the counter or inside the closet.
Items To Be Saved
The next thing you want to do is remove anything that is being saved or doesn't need to be in there. Anything that's not going to be removed as part of the demolition. This can be trash cans, pictures on the wall, towels, or decorations. The exception to this might be curtains or blinds. If you’re going to keep them, we will remove anything that’s attached to the wall for you. If you have a shelf on the wall that is screwed in, we can do that for you. You can use this form to fill out what's going to be saved so we'll know ahead of time. Items to be saved
This also includes anything that's on the opposite side of the wall of the room that we're going to be working in. You want to remove those pictures or items from the wall. The reason is because whenever we're banging and doing demolition a lot of times those pictures can fall off the wall and can break.
Clear The Path
The next thing to do is make sure you have an easy and clear pathway to the room that we're working on. If we haven’t already discussed potential paths with you, you can ask us ahead of time or we can go over this with you on our pre-job walk through. If you have a hallway that we have to go down no matter what, you do not want to have it cluttered with items that can be knocked over or broken. Your grandma's old vase or that special nick nack from your honeymoon, whatever it might be, you want to remove those items so that they can't be damaged or hinder the progress. Other items can include any type of furniture that may be in the way. If we’re doing a bathroom, in the bedroom you may need to move a nightstand or dresser out of the way just to give more access to get materials in and out of the bathroom. If you’re not able to move anything that’s too heavy, we can always assist you with that.
Make Some Space
We usually cover this during the consultation but if there isn’t enough room inside the project area, we will need a space close to the room we’re working in so that we have an area to put our tools and supplies as needed. Typically a 8x8 area just outside the door or immediate area of work. Depending on the job, we sometimes need an area of the garage or spare room to store materials. We will let you know that ahead of time, but if we are asking for an area like that, we ask that you have that cleared out for us as well.
We always make sure that we're taking care of your house and try our best not to damage anything. Whatever you can do to reduce the potential of damage is greatly appreciated by our staff. The last thing we want to do is knock over your grandmother's 100 year old vase and break it. If we have to walk by that 50 times it just adds a level of stress to the job that could be completely avoided.
Next, you want to make arrangements ahead of time for any kind of pets whether it's dogs or cats or lizards. This can be super stressful for them as well. We do not want them to be in the immediate area where the work is being completed. You want to plan ahead of time so that if you're not going to be home we don’t run into any issues with your animals. We ask that your animals are put in their cages or in other rooms. Sometimes people take their animals to a doggie daycare or the like as well. If you have very well mannered pets and you’re going to leave them out, they need to be restricted to areas of the house where we are not working. If animals are left out to roam, we may accidently let them out why carrying in materials, and we don’t want to do that! The quality of your job depends on our ability to focus on your outcomes and it is tough if we are also stressed about caring for your animals.
You don't know how your animal acts when you're not home. I personally had an experience of doing work for friends and their dog knew me well, but when I showed up to work when no one was home, he wasn't having any part of it. The owner had to come home and lock him up.
It's also a good idea to write down all your contact information. Put down who the first point of contact to call in case of an emergency. List all the phone numbers, emails or addresses of work or anything that may be needed to contact you. If you're not available by cell phone during the day you may want to add your work line and instructions on how to get a hold of you. Use this form to fill out your contact information. Contact Information
If there's anything that is of great importance to you, please be sure to let us know ahead of time so that we can pay extra attention to that whether it be a rug or something of value that you want to make sure does not get damaged. We are happy to accommodate your requests and pay extra attention to those special items.
It’s very important that these items are done prior to us showing up to the job. Whenever we show up to start on the job is not the time for you to start taking your personal items out of the bathroom or taking all your pots and pans out of the kitchen. We want to provide you with the best possible experience you can have with your remodel. Anything you can do to reduce the stress of working in your home is greatly appreciated!
Extra Pro Tip: Home baked goodies is the secret to making sure your contractor is going to give that extra special attention to your project. Think I'm joking? Try it and see for yourself.