Regardless of whether we’re looking for a house extension, or have a more challenging project on the horizon, the meeting of deadlines and assurance of quality means we need to make sure that we’re choosing the right builder for our needs.
We’ve probably all heard the horror stories associated with hiring the services of an incapable builder, and the stress it can cause when an inexperienced contractor has promised you one thing, only for you to be met with another.
Fortunately, the majority of builders operate in a moral and ethical way, but this doesn’t mean we should choose the first builder that comes along. A little research ensures that you’re not going to be let down when it comes to your building project.
Experience is Vital
It stands to reason that the longer a company has been operating, the more experience it will have, and this is especially true for the construction industry.
They are many facets associated with the world of construction, and while there may be some contractors who are experienced in one field, they may not be as experienced in another. This means that the costs associated with ay building work can pile up, as we’re having to use more than one professional for the work that needs to be undertaken.
Using a construction company that has experience will ensure that you’re not only being given access to true professionals, but you will often find that the quotes are more cost-effective, as the work is being carried out by one company as opposed to several.
Communication is Key
When dancing which construction company is the best fit for you, you will often be able to determine a lot of by the initial contact.
Is the company answering your questions? Have they had experience with type of work before? Are they able to complete the work in the allocated time?
Although not every construction company will be able to meet your deadlines in every instance, a professional company will ensure that you’re made aware of this, and when you can realistically expect the job to be completed.
If a construction company can’t give you the answers you need, then it be ay worthwhile looking elsewhere.
Don’t Assume the Cheapest Quote is The Best
It’s understandable that we don’t want to spend a small fortune when it comes to building work, but we need to be careful we’re not swayed by the price alone.
Although some companies may offer a cheaper price than a more experienced company, you may find that there are some limitations with the service you use.
For example, it could mean that inferior products are being used, which means you could end up paying for repairs in the future, or even having to hire the services of another professional to rectify the issue.
Check for Reviews and Testimonials
A company that has completed successful projects in the past should have little issue in providing you with reviews and testimonials. How these are presented can depend on the company.
For example, some may have their testimonials on their website, whereas others may have reviews on Google My Business or Yelp.
If a construction company seems a little coy about providing you with past testimonial, it’s advisable to search elsewhere for a professional.
Check the Company Is Insured
Nobody likes to think about the things that could go wrong when using the services of a construction company, but you need to ensure that you’re checking the credentials of the company you’re planning to use.
Although many construction companies can offer customers a reliable service, there can be instances where something could go wrong.
If the construction company is insured, then there’s little to worry about. However, if you’ve chosen a contractor who isn’t insured, then anything that goes wrong could be left for you to deal with, and often your own home insurance will not be able to cover such an occurrence.
As you can imagine, this can be very costly, as not only will you need to pay to have any damages rectified, but also for the initial work to be carried out again.
Ensure a Contract is In Place for Substantial Work
There will be times when the work of a builder must go over budget, but a professional will keep you in the loop at all times and let you know what options are available.
If you’re looking to have a lot of work carried out, then it can be useful to build up a contract with the construction company so both parties are fully aware of any obligations and costs.
If a company is pushing you to hand over money with no clear quotation insight, then you need to refuse until clarity and confirmation have been offered.
A professional construction company will have little issue in coming up with a contract that outlines the work that needs to be carried out as well as the cost agreed.
Ensure Payment Dates are Agreed
Following on from the creation of the contract, there may be phases during the work where payments need to be made. Agreeing with what phase of completed work payment should be made ensures that there are no misunderstandings later on.
Although a construction company must understand a customer needs to ensure the capital is available, customers also need to understand that a majority of the money will be spent on materials, so regular payments may be vital for the project to move forward.
Although buying a house can be an exciting endeavour, it can take time to make it a home. However, this isn’t to say that there aren’t some shortcuts that can be taken to ensure that there is a warm atmosphere in the home.
The following are some tips that can keep you warm during the winter months, as well as giving the home some much-needed ambience during the darker nights.
Lag Your Piping
The art of pip lagging may be one that is somewhat aged when compared to other approaches, but it’s one that works, and it’s cheap to do.
Lagging is essentially putting foam around your water pipe to ensure that there is no loss of heart, and what’s more, no tools are required.
Although there may be other things you need to do to ensure heat isn’t lost, lagging the hot water pipes can be the ideal starting point.
Consider Wall insulation
Although its common knowledge that wall insulation can help save on fuel bills and retain heat, there are still many people who haven’t enjoyed the benefits.
Although wall insulation comes at a cost, the money will often be recouped in what you save on fuel moving forward. What’s more, wall insulation ensures that your home retains as much as heat as possible, which is vital for the colder seasons.
Use Your Curtains Properly
It’s not unusual for the weather to be sporadic, so it’s a good idea to make use of the sun when it's available. Opening the curtains when the suns out ensure you’re making using of natural heat in the day, allowing you to conserve energy for nightfall.
The sun will often heat the home substantially in the day if the curtains are open, and eve
Not only is this more cost-effective, but you can ensure that you don’t have to ration your energy as much.
Draught Excluders Are Still Useful
Given all the technology that is put our way, it’s to dismiss simple and cost-effective ways of keeping the home warm. Although basic in their approach, draught excluders do a sterling job of keeping heat in the room.
Even if all the rooms need some form of draught exclusion, the process is generally quite cheap.
Bleed Your Radiators (If Necessary)
For the most part, radiators carry out the duties without a hitch, but there can be times when we need to intervene to ensure that they’re working at the best. Air bubbles present in the radiator could mean that the radiator isn’t creating as much heat as it could.
[caption id="attachment_447" align="alignnone" width="500"] Happy young family using a tablet pc at home by a fireplace in warm and cozy living room on winter day[/caption]
Arrange a Boiler Service
It’s not only problematic radiators that can restrict hear in the home, as boilers play their part too. Although we can take them for granted, it’s a good idea to get your boiler serviced before the cold month's strike. If you’re unfortunate enough to have your boiler break down at the wrong time, then there could be some discomfort until a repair can be arranged.
Fortunately, the method to rectify this is simple and merely requires you to bleed the radiators. You will need to use a radiator key, which can be purchased from any DIY store, and simply twist the valve until the hissing stops and water appear. Once this happens simply close the valve.
More information on arranging boiler service check out - https://www.britishgas.co.uk/home-services/guides/annual-boiler-service-article.html
Invest in Some Rugs
Wooden floors can look great around the home, but they can also leave rooms feeling cold. Although there are alternatives, such as heated flooring, those looking for a cheaper solution can simply invest in some rugs.
Whether you decide to use one large rug or a series of smaller rugs will depend on the layout of the home, but either approach can be more cost-effective than modern alternatives, while still adding character to the home.
Find the Right Temperature for You
It’s understandable that some people are concerned about having the heating on too high, as they will waste money. However, having it too cold can cause some discomfort.
Finding the perfect temperature for you ensures that you can time your boiler accordingly, meaning that you’re not wasting energy when not at home.
Those looking for something they can control when out and about may want to invest in a smart option, which allows you to amend settings from an app.
Soft Lighting Creates Ambiance
As well as ensuring your home has heat flowing through it without escaping, you can also create a warm abidance that contributes towards the cosiness of your home.
Harsh bright lighting can make it hard to relax, regardless of how much heat you’re conserving. Swapping your bright lighting for something a little softer doesn’t have to be expensive, as a few lamps can be just as effective as opposed to spending hundreds on electrical work
What’s more, this can be done throughout the house, and you can even combine with modern technology to streamline the operation. For example, those who can’t afford smart lighting may find a Bluetooth-enable light bulb just as effective.
Display Your Proud Moments
Given the advancements of technology, you’re more likely to see photographs on someone’s social network as opposed to their wall, but this doesn’t mean that memories and achievements don’t look amazing and create a homelier feel overall.
The frames you use can be tailored to your décor. For example, those with a modern abode may decide to use clip frames, whereas those with more rustic surroundings may decide a wooden frame is best.
The possibilities are endless and framing photographs, certificates and diplomas are a great way of adding warmth and charm to the home.
Some of us can struggle when it comes to making a house feel more comfortable, especially if you’ve only just moved in. However, some simple approaches can ensure that your home is prepared for the winter and inviting to friends and family.
When you are planning to engage in any construction project that is geared towards home or office space improvement, there are a number of factors you must first consider before bringing in a professional. This is meant to ensure that as you bring in a contractor to run the project, you have covered all your bases and you have a clear picture of the deliverables you expect from them.
In this article, we will look at the 5 things you must consider before bringing in a professional to handle your construction projects.
1 You have to do the math
What we mean by doing the math is that before you engage in any construction work aimed at making improvements to your home or office space, it must make financial sense. You don’t want to be making financial investments that will not give you any returns.
2 Set a scope for the work
One of the challenges many people face when they engage in construction work meant to make improvement on a space is that once they start, stopping becomes a problem because they keep noticing things that can be improved. It’s therefore important for you to be able to have some personal discipline by setting a scope for the job and sticking to it.
3 Have a realistic budget in place
Whether you are working on improvement of your home or office space, it’s very important for your budget to be realistic. It won’t make sense spending money on construction work, when the cost of this construction is higher than the value of the property. It’s your budget that will help guide you on whether you will be able to recoup your investment.
4 Ensure that you have an end goal
Anytime you are engaging in an improvement project whether it’s for your home or office space, you must always know what your end goal is. This is because any financial investments you make must have a return therefore any end goal you have must demonstrate how you will recoup your finances from such a project.
5 Be ready for the disruption to your life
If you bring in a contractor to do some construction work in your home or office, you must realize that for the duration of the project, you will not be able to make use of certain spaces in your office or home. This can be a very frustrating period therefore you must be prepared for such disruptions to your life.
Once you have thought really hard and done the math and it makes sense, then you can go ahead and bring in a contractor.