Living With Your Contractor

by John Lorang, Lorang Custom Builders Inc.

Do you vacation in hotels, go tent camping, or do you land somewhere in between?  Should you live-in or move-out during a major renovation in your home?

It is important that you review the following factors with your contractor:
1)       Identify the total impact zone.  Maybe you are having an upper level renovation or addition.  There may be significant impacts to other areas of your home for access to electrical, plumbing, heating, and/or to do structural modifications that are necessary for the project.  The contractor may need to open walls or ceilings in areas that you are unaware of.  They will also need space for vehicles, staging tools, lumber, supplies, and debris.
2)      What is your contractor’s plan for containment of dust?  It is very important to install filters on the heat return air grills to keep dust from entering the furnace and further blowing through the supply air ducts into the rest of your home.  Areas of work should be confined with dust barriers.
3)      Will you need to move or protect furniture, rugs, artwork, or other items to allow for activities within the impact zone?
4)      There may be significant inconveniences during the work from excavations, water being shut off, painting, & hardwood floors being finished.  You may have prolonged exposure to cold during winter months.
5)      If your kitchen is being renovated will you have the ability to set up a small dining area with access to a refrigerator, microwave,  water, hot plate, and a place to store food basics.

It is important to think about how your family will do with the disruptions and new faces on a regular basis.

Of course there are financial impacts to evaluate.  From the contractor’s perspective, the project may take longer and be more expensive if you stay in the home, although, if you move out there will be costs and inconveniences related to that as well.

Every project has a unique set of circumstances that need to be considered when weighing the costs vs. benefits of living-in or moving-out during your home renovation.  It is important to review all the impacts prior to making your decision.

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