Real Estate Watch: Deciding to love or list your home

Real Estate Watch: Deciding to love or list your home

So you are deciding to either move or renovate your domicile.  You have contemplated and mulled over everything, but are still unsure of the size of the expenditures or budget you should begin with and how to proceed.  

The first item on your agenda, should be a budget with a little bit of cushion, say 5-10 percent or more, built in to it.  One must first compare the additional cost of an upgraded home with the cost of spending the necessary dollars to do a complete renovation on ones kitchen, bathrooms, windows, maybe the roof, electrical, plumbing, etc.  

Are you going to expand and increase the interior square footage? What will the impact be on your real estate taxes with all the planned improvements that you have in mind as apposed to just going out and finding another home with those upgrades already built in?  

Starting with a budget begins with figuring out and deciding first, what exactly you are going to do to make your home more livable, improved and larger.

Then you must search out at least 2-3 (preferably 3) licensed, bonded & insured contractors to provide you with estimates on those planned improvements.  

Make sure the Insurance coverage that the company that you might use, is sufficient enough to cover unexpected tragedies that might occur and also you should ask for a certificate of insurance with your name or corporation name, if your property (residential or commercial) is owned by one, as an additional insured, so you and your home, condo or co-op or commercial property will be covered in case of a claim and not have to worry that you now have to use your insurance to cover any damages that potentially could happen).  

I have seen homeowners and commercial property owners, hire or use individuals with insufficient or no coverage to perform work, to try to save money and cut costs, “Penny Wise and Pound Foolish.”  

The next question, one should ask is, “Show me photos and/or videos of your work that you have done previously, 3-5 maybe even 10 years ago (assuming the contractor has been in business that long) as well as the names and phone numbers, so you can call the customers and see if they were satisfied and are still, to this day happy with the work that was completed.  

That being said, prices will surely vary up and down and so will the workmanship, so don’t pick the cheapest home improvement contractor to try to save a buck!  

Will you be using an architect to redesign any rooms?  

Don’t forget, as I mentioned in last weeks article, either you or your contractor needs to file for the necessary permits and make sure you have copies as well as all the necessary and final C.O.’s (Certificate of

Completion and Occupancy).  

It is a wise decision, for the work, materials and start and completion dates, to be in your contract  If not then what you might find is that what you signed up for could become very detrimental to the completion of the project.  

Have a conversation with your contractor to come up with the needed start date as well as a deadline for completion; even so much as to possibly pay him a bonus if done within the specifications of your contract (your paying rent, so the sooner you are back inside your home, the sooner you will stop paying rent), but possibly, penalize him, if not completed on time based on your contractual agreement. 

Will you be staying in the home or moving out to a temporary rental?  What will that cost be?  

What moving company will I hire and what will that cost be?  Will you even find a place soon enough to begin your renovation?  

Some will find this task beyond what their nerves and mindset can handle and others will have less issues, because they have planned it all out to the “T.”  

Keep the following in mind when deciding when to do your renovation:

1. Consider doing your air conditioning in the colder months, when you will potentially get a lower price, because the busiest time is in the spring and summer months

2. Consider doing your new heating system in the summer, when prices should be lower too and less competition!

3. Price your Outside painting  during the fall and not the spring, when everyone is so busy that your price could and many times will be higher.

4. Price your interior painting during the spring and winter and compare

5. Try to buy your appliances wholesale, since if it is a bulk purchase, everyone will want to make a deal with you.

6. Renovating in the winter can in many instances, save a lot of money, depending on the location, because spring tends to be the busiest time of the year for contractors.

Now you have done your homework, so what’s it going to be,  to stay and renovate or begin searching out a new home.  

Whatever your decision, again from last weeks article, “Proper planning prevents piss poor performance.

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