With warmer weather approaching, many of you may be looking at plans for spring renovations. New decks, updated bathrooms, and bedroom additions are all common renovations that can add functionality and value to your Kamloops home. A recent article from Michael Sanibel identified several renovation scams that you should consider as you make your plans:
1. The One-Time Deal. This is one of the oldest scams in the book. Often, you will receive a "special" mailing or phone call that says the contractor can do your work for a great price if you'll sign the contract today. While sales and specials are common in business, a reputable company will stand by the sale price tomorrow, once you've had a chance to look at the facts. Just remember, the cheap does not always mean best value.
2. I was working down the street .... While you're enjoying your favorite hockey team on television, a guy knocks on the door..."I was just doing some decking work down the street and noticed that you may need some work on your deck, too. I have some leftover supplies and my tools in the car...would you like me to take care of the work for you today?" Sounds great, doesn't it? Almost too good to be true...well, it probably is. Would you let an unknown person into your home to make you dinner if he said he was a chef, just made his own family's meal and had enough leftovers to make yours? Me neither. The same should hold true for anyone who comes into your home.
3. I left my license and company car at home. Any contractor that comes to you Kamloops home should have their licensing information, necessary tools for the job, and will probably have some type of company vehicle. If anyone like this comes to your home DO NOT let them in. At the very least, this is someone looking to make a quick dollar. At its worst, it is someone attempting to gain access to your home for criminal purposes.
4. I can arrange financing. It's better to leave the financing to the professionals. If your contractor refers you to a "friend: will finance cheaply, be very way. In cases like these, the contractor is likely getting some type of kick back or other favor from the lender. In ANY financing, use a lender you trust and always triple check the paperwork to ensure you understand and agree to all the terms. Also, be sure that all work is specifically spelled out in the contract
5. Pay me now. For many small contractors, taking a partial payment before work starts allows them to purchase the materials for the However, you should NEVER pay more than ½ of the total cost up front. If this is a large renovation, , you may consider paying installments as certain completion milestones are met. This can be a great motivator to a contractor to finish the work quickly....just be sure these milestones are listed in the contract and understood by all parties involved.
6. While I was working, I noticed this problem.... It is inevitable that a renovation will uncover some type of additional work that needs to be done. Many pipes, ducts, and wires are hidden inside walls, and we only realize they are damaged when we renovate rooms. Just be sure to check out any new work recommended by a contractor-if it's not something you're familiar with, ask a friend to take a look. If you still arent' comfortable, get a second contractor to make a bid. Remember, you signed a contract for specific work only-anything additional can be negotiated.
Renovating your Kamloops can be a stressful experience. Researching and hiring a reputable contractor can take time, but it is time well spent. Organizations such as Ministry of Consumer Services and Better Business Bureau have great information on ways to protect yourself and find reputable contractors to complete your renovations. Whether you are adding a new room, replacing a deck, or updating your kitchen and bath, do your homework so that you end up with a space that you can enjoy.
When you are ready to sell your Kamlooops home or relocate to the area, call me, Eric Putoto!
Eric Putoto is the ONLY Canadian Realtor and Brokerage owner to have been granted an exclusive license for the most advance home selling system ever developed: The "Maximum Value Home Selling Systems."TM