Home Remodeling Contractors
When it’s time to renovate any part of your house, an experienced remodeler is the pro to hire. Home remodeling contractors range from independent craftspeople to large, full-service firms, and many specialize in particular areas of the home or types of projects.
Some contractors work more as managers, while some get their hands dirty.
Many home remodeling contractors operate as general contractors (or GCs), meaning they manage the entire project from start to finish and hire subcontractors for most or all aspects of the construction. Experienced general contractors know how to coordinate the work of the many tradespeople involved in a large project, and they understand the complexities (and common pitfalls) of remodeling.
Hands-On RemodelersIndividuals and small crews of home remodelers are often well-rounded carpenters or builders who specialize in remodeling and do much of the day-to-day work themselves. If you like the work of a particular tradesperson and your project is suitable for a small crew, this type of home remodeling contractor can be a good way to get personal service and a custom look. Small crews also tend to be less expensive than larger remodeling operations.
Design/build firms or companies employ both design professionals and general contractors to offer clients the ultimate in turnkey service. One of the best things about design/build setups is the synergistic (or, at the very least, efficient) relationship between your project’s designer and the contractor managing the construction. Many specialty remodelers, such as kitchen and bath and basement remodelers, operate as design/build firms.
Some firms have both designers and contractors on staff.
Kitchen & Bath Remodelers
As the most commonly remodeled rooms in the house, kitchens and baths have inspired numerous home remodeling contractors to specialize in one room or the other — or both. Due to the complexity and expense of kitchens and bathrooms, it’s highly recommended to use a specialist for these renovations.
Another common area of specialty among home remodeling contractors, basements can be tricky to design and finish properly. Moisture and drainage issues, space constraints and special building code requirements are among the challenges that make the basement an area of specific expertise. If you don’t use a design/build basement remodeler to handle your basement, be sure to choose an experienced contractor and designer (if applicable) who have plenty of below-grade projects under their belts.
Choosing a Home Remodeling Contractor
Whether you’re making over your bathroom or adding on a master suite, narrow your pool of prospective contractors to those with the most experience with your type and scope of project. Also keep in mind that professional designers can be helpful for any remodel, not just major renovations. Architects, interior designers and kitchen and bath design specialists are expert problem solvers who can set you on the right path during the most important phase of the project: the planning phase.
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Philip Schmidt is a home improvement author and editor based in Colorado. He enjoys honey-do lists and boring his family with random facts about houses.