Saturday, May 28, 2016

Don't Wait To Call Your Contractor This Summer

Now that the warmer weather has finally arrived people are starting to think about all the projects that they wanted to complete at their homes and cottages.

Those renovation, additions and new builds will require you to hire a contractor.

What you need to realize is that your not the only one looking for a contractor now that the weather has warmed up, everyone is looking for the same thing. The longer you wait to start looking the longer you are going to have to wait for your chosen contractor to be available.

One of the worst things you can do is hire a contractor just because their schedule is open for you to hire them. Your choice for contractor should be about someone you trust, someone you can work with and someone that you believe can do the work to your standard.

Start your search early, get a proper quote and find someone you can work with, you can always schedule your contractor for later in the summer when you are ready for the work to be done. If you wait too long to start the process of finding that contractor then you could end up in the position of having to wait for the per-ford contractor to become available. This can end up pushing your project into the fall.

Since June is almost here then you should be looking for that contractor now or you could end up settling for someone that you don't really want or waiting until the fall for that contractor that you really want to fit you in.

Start making those calls and emails now before you are forced to wait.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Don't Forget The Rod When Buying A Ceiling Fan

One of the simplest things to forget when you want to either replace a ceiling fan or install a new ceiling fan is to forget the rod that keeps the fan off the ceiling.

Most fans will come with a small rod that is no more then 4 inches long, this works well in flat ceilings that are only 8 feet high. It doesn't help you out when there is any kind of slope to the ceiling.
Fans are usually installed in sloping or high ceilings to help move the air around so that the hot moist air doesn't just collect at the top of the room. This lowers your heating and cooling bills and can help make a room feel more comfortable.

Depending on were you are placing your ceiling fan will determine the length of rod that you will require for it to operate properly. For example if you are placing your ceiling fan at the peak of the roof then the sloping ceiling will restrict how high the fan can be placed as the blades will come in contact with the ceiling. The steeper the ceiling the less room your fan will have and the longer the rod you will require for it to have proper clearance to operate.

Some people will require longer rods not just because of the ceiling angle but also because they want their fans to hang lower so that they can be seen easier as a decorating feature. Other people want to feel the air being moved by the fan so they want the fan to be hung lower for that desired affect.

Whatever the length of rod that you require that rod is more then likely not going to be included with the fan that you purchase. You will have to buy it separately and depending on were you are buying your fan they may not even mention to you that you will need a rod.

The worst case scenario is that you have electricians come into your home, get all set up to change the fan and then inform you that the new fan doesn't fit because the rod isn't long enough. At that point you have several choices;

  1. You can leave and run around town and hopefully find a rod that fits, while the electricians wait for you as they bill you for their time.
  2. You can get the electricians to go out and buy you the appropriate rod that you require, you are not only paying them for their time but also the mark up on the rod that they buy.
  3. You can ask them to come back another day when you are able to find the appropriate rod. This also adds more cost as there is usually a fee for coming back a second time to set up.
When you purchase that fan make sure that before you leave the store you inquire about the appropriate length of rod that you require. If you are not total sure of the length of rod that you need then buy several different lengths, you can always return the ones you don't use.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Don't Let That Home Inspectors Report Scare You

A sad trend in today's real estate environment is the rise of the home inspector. Home inspectors have been built up into the real estate buying and selling process so much that home insurance companies are now asking for a copy of their reports when you apply for home insurance.

Now I'm not saying that there isn't a role for the home inspector in real estate, they fit in for what they are, a completely unregulated group of people that I would have a hard time calling "professionals".

As a custom home builder that also renovated dozens of homes a year I am constantly shaking my head at home inspector reports that my clients hand me. The report is usually 50% incorrect in it's findings and the rest of the report is things that are of such little cost to repair that we find it not worth the paper it was written on.

As a custom home builder I know infinitely more then a home inspector on how a home is put together,what can and does go wrong in a home overtime and the cost to fix it. But even with all the experience I still find myself learning new things every day about new homes and how they are affected by time. Because of this we rely on our sub-contractors to know more then us and to educate us on all the sophisticated systems in a home. For example if I think that there is a problem with the heating system in a home I don't diagnose the problem myself I will bring in a mechanical contractor to do that and to give me a price for the repair.

Home inspectors on the other hand will look at a problem with the heating system and tell the home owner what they believe the problem is and how it needs to be repaired. 50% of the time the diagnoses of what the problem is is completely wrong. 90% of the time what the home inspector then recommends as a repair is completely wrong.

What this does is create an expectation with the homeowner that they know what is wrong and they know how to fix it. This creates a problem for the contractor that comes in to do the actual repair, the seller of the home wants the contractor to fix it like the home inspector said and the buyer of the home is expecting the same. The problem arises when the contractor informs the seller that the problem isn't what the home inspector has stated and the repair isn't either right or even needed.

This whole scenario eats up a lot of time and money on both sides just because an unqualified  home inspector wrote something down on paper that they weren't trained to identify in the first place.

Th moral of the story is if you are going to hire a home inspector to write a report about the home that you wish to purchase take the report with a grain of salt. Do not be surprised if their report turns out to be incorrect and unreliable.

I you are really worried about something in a house ask your renovation contractor to come take a look, for a small fee or if they have already been retained to renovate the home when you buy it (then there won't be a fee) they will come out and take a look and diagnose the problem and the cost to properly correct it.

Remember that you want someone that knows how to fix the home not someone who is just trying to justify their fee.

Call your contractor.

Rob Abbott
Village Builders Inc.