When you become a remodeling client of any builder, you obviously have a vested interest in the successful outcome of the project. You should be treated as an integral member of the team. Your contractor can help you realize your dreams and your vision, and the road is made easier if you set guidelines at the outset on how you will work together. Here are just a few tips:
- Be responsive to builder inquiries. Don’t let his questions go into a black hole. Decide at the outset of the project how you will handle communication with each other – text, e-mail, telephone, or in-person. Some builders don’t text clients, others prefer phone conversations. Select the method that works best for both of you.
- Acknowledge receipt of questions or communication. Both you and the builder should let each other know when things are received. If you need more time to get answers, say so. If there is a deadline, say so.
- Meet deadlines. If the builder tells you he needs your selections in five business days, have your selections to him in that time frame.Your response time will help to keep the job on schedule.
- Be decisive and confident in your choices. When you decide on something, put it in writing in a separate correspondence, not buried in a long e-mail with lots of other items.
- Ask questions. If you don’t know the answer, it’s not a dumb question. Builders expect homeowners to have a lot of questions, and he should be prepared to answer them.
- Set up a weekly or monthly status meeting or call. This can be a great way to get your questions answered and keep on top of progress.
- Acknowledge and even talk to the people who come to your house every day. Be friendly, but not to the detriment of the job.
- If you like what the builder is doing, tell him. Don’t just tell him when something is wrong. More importantly, if you like his work, tell your friends.