Price is a critical aspect of any renovation project. What will it cost to do the job you want? Alternatively, how far can you go on a set budget?
Different Sized Projects, Different Sized Price Quotes
Determining the cost of a small project, like replacing your roofing, can be fairly simple. Just make sure all the contractors bidding the job are providing the same services and identical quality materials.
For more complex projects, it often takes a few conversations with contractors to define the project to the point where they can begin determining costs.
For large project projects, it is often necessary to develop the complete design, specifications and plans first as an initial and separate job. Depending on the level of work involved, expect to pay a fee to have this done. Many renovators offer design and plans development services. If you have purchased such design services, you can use the completed material to ask contractors for a formal price quote. Having contractors price the job based on identical design and specification information will make evaluating their quotes much easier, and prevent unwelcome ‘surprises’ when the work begins.
The level of detail required in plans will vary depending on the scope, size and complexity of the project. This can range from simple sketches or diagrams to full construction drawings for projects that involve altering the structure of your home.
Talk to your Renovator
Experienced renovators can sometimes offer an educated opinion or price range on the spot, based on similar jobs they have done in the past – for instance, a per-square-foot estimate for additions or basement recreation rooms, or a rough cost estimate for upgrading your bathroom. This can be helpful upfront to make sure that there is a realistic fit between what you would like to do and the budget your have in mind. However, be aware that the cost of a project can vary greatly, depending on many factors, including the current condition of your home and the types of products you decide to use. A ‘guesstimate’ is not a price quote.
Whenever you plan to hire a contractor, make sure you understand their price quote – and what it covers, before you sign a contract. And never agree to let a contractor work without a contract. The Canadian Home Builder’s Association offers Canada’s best free and unbiased information on how to hire a contractor the smart and safe way. Visit www.getitinwriting.ca