The Adventure Begins

Tomorrow morning I am meeting with a general contractor. The time has come to make some changes to my home that are beyond my abilities.

I am nervous, but excited. Within the next month or so I hope to determine which contractor is going to get the job and specific details as to what we are actually going to do to the house.

Part of me feels quite old. This is something that my parents should be doing. When did I get to be in a place where I could discuss remodeling. It is surreal, but it should be interesting.

I am sure that I'll keep the blogosphere posted about the highs and lows of it.


cruisin-mom said...

Jack: good luck, really, hopefully you will be reporting more highs, than lows.

StepIma said...

wow... good luck!

Let me introduce you to the F/C/G pyramid. It will prevent a lot of headaches for you down the road.

Picture a triangle with the words Fast / Cheap / Good written on each side.

You get to pick any two. Three is an impossibility.

At least, that's been my hard-earned experience.

Hope it goes well - will you be posting before and after pics?

Stacey said...

Can't wait to hear all about it. Good luck w/the meeting this a.m. Tell him you have a budget and you are very serious about needing to stick to it. There is no room for scope-creep.

Richmond said...

Oh sounds like fun! And good blog fodder.... Take pictures!

Eshet Chayil said...

wonder if it's an amazing kitchen. I've come across in people's houses these dream kosher kitchens. details!

MUST Gum Addict said...

Hey Jack -- Best of luck of course with this. A few short years ago, we did some major revisions in the house and I can pass on the following advice:

When getting prices from contractors, the lowest prices don't always mean the worst work, and the highest prices certainly don't mean that their work is the best either.

Make a budget and STICK to it. That's a mistake that we made. When looking at the costs of materials and picking out tiles, fixtures, etc. We would always note that "the better one is just $500 more," etc. But when we added all of those little extras up afterwards, we were thousands of dollars over budget.

My wife cared more about this than I originally did, but try to find someone who will be clean. We have had contractors who left the house at the end of the day by sweeping up and putting everything away, and others who tracked dirt all over the house and left tools all over.

You're a guy, so I assume you have tools. Keep them someplace safe. Not that contractors are thieves, but it's all too easy to mistake one of your tools for theirs and when they pack up their vans each day, you never know. I ended up losing a good ladder, a power drill, my vise-grips and several other tools. I certainly didn't budget to replace those.

I'm certainly interested to hear how things go for you -- feel free to ask if you need advice.

Topwomen said...

Jack, we JUST finished a 10 month addition/renovation that was supposed to take only three months. We spent two years inverviewing architects and General Constractors, so if you're just interviewing now, you're probably still a year away, but I'm from New York and that could create delay for that reason alone.

There are so many things that I could advise and warn you about, but I won't tire you. I WILL, however, tell you this. Be prepared to be stressed! Be prepared for your marriage (if you're married) to be stressed. Be prepared for your children to be stressed.

We lived in our home while the entire house was in mass confusion, noise, and plaster dust for almost a year and even though my GC said we were the most easy going customer he ever had (mind you that's "NY easy going" which is NOT easy going), I can tell you it affected every aspect of our family's emotional well-being.

Good luck! :)

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

I just hope your contractor's name isn't Shola Rhoads

Topwomen said...

Oh one final piece of advice. If you have a cat, keep it locked away in a room that NO ONE will be going in. :)

wanderer said...

I agree with everything that's been said. I would add that you should definitely go ahead and make a strict budget, but keep in mind that you will in the end spend 25% more...

Looking forward to hearing about the progress.

Jack Steiner said...


Thanks, I hope so.


The F/C/G pyramid. I like that. It makes sense.


I am going to try real hard.


Plenty of blog fodder, that is for certain.

Eshet Chayil,

The kitchen we discussed today was incredible.


Thanks, that is good advice.


I am prepared for the roller coaster, or so I think.


The Bishop of Bullfrog is prepared for all events.


I despise cats, so there are no worries there. ;)


25%, that would be good. We shall see.

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