One of the most significant decisions you’ll make when renovating is choosing who to hire. Here’s some of the lessons I learned when picking your renovation team . . . . Hello, welcome back to the series 7 Renovation Lessons Learned by a Financial Adviser, which is me, Luke Hanson, Director at My Financial Design.
Well, lesson number three, Pick your players. By that I mean making sure you’re selecting the right tradespeople or the right people involved in your renovation who are going to be on your renovating team. This is the part where it requires you to take multiple quotes and talk to multiple people over multiple weeks and can be a bit like you’re going around the mulberry bush.
For me, I had tenants living in the property at this point of my renovation journey. So it was a little bit difficult to, you know, kind of have everyone come in and quote, you have to be very selective because you don’t want to disrupt the tenants too much, but if you’re living in your own principal place of residence, it can be a bit easier.
You can have people come when you’re home and you can have as many as you like, but it’s really important to at least get multiple quotes, at least, you know, at least two quotes on each aspect of the renovation you’re looking for because there can be a vast difference in those costs.
So for example, I had to get some trees removed from the backyard. One quote was $2,000. One quote was $1,000. So, obviously there can be a difference in quality for that price difference, but you know, the lower quote worked for me. They were great people they were insured and really professional. So just because there’s a range of quote differential doesn’t necessarily mean, you know, the most expensive is the best quality or the lowest is the worst quality.
Obviously you get what you pay for, but within that take the time to get multiple quotes. Because it’s so important and you can, your budget can run away from you if you don’t get those multiple quotes and work out what’s going to be the most appropriate for your situation. And when I say get multiple quotes, I say, work with professionals, by the way.
So, by that, I mean, for some jobs inside the house, perhaps a handyman can do those and you’d like to think the handyman’s cheaper. Though not always, per hour, that is on the dollar rate. But if it’s going to be a handyman well think to yourself, what is it that’s not so important to the overall structural components of the renovation, but what’s going to be relevant. What’s going to be appropriate for your handyman to do. And if you can get a lower cost for that sure, but at the same time, well, one of the things that went wrong for me, or I not wrong so much, but I would have done differently perhaps, is that the handyman, while they are a little bit cheaper, they probably took a bit longer to do things and weren’t as experienced in everything.
So while you pay a cheaper, hourly rate, if they spend more hours fluffing around trying to get it right, you may actually come out better if you hire a builder who might be a bit more expensive, but can get it done faster and can get it done right the first time. So by that, I mean, make sure you choose the right people along the way, who are actually going to be skilled at what they do have experience and are going to get the job done properly. I like to pick people on the team, I like to pick the players who I like to work with.
I found that at the end of the day, you’re working with a lot of people, it can be a bit of a high-stress environment sometimes. Particularly if things are going wrong or you’ve got a deadline to get everything done by, and you’ve got two or three trades in and out each day, and you’ve got a lot going on. And particularly if, you don’t, you can’t commit full-time to overseeing the renovation, you’ve got other work to do. You’ve got a job yourself presumably. You want to pick people who you actually get along with. I found that if you can take the stress out of things, by having a bit of a laugh and enjoying each other’s company and understanding and being on the same level, I think that’s a really good way to go.
So if you’ve got the option of a couple of quotes and they are all within the ballpark, I’d pick the person who you actually get along with and you think is going to be good for the journey and understands what you’re trying to do and isn’t going to cause problems and isn’t going to cause problems with other trades.
That’s the next point when you’re picking your players, you want to make sure that if you’re the one oversighting the project and you know, you haven’t handed it off to a builder.