Protecting Homeowners Through Renovation Education

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“Do you want to avoid a home remodeling nightmare and the dreaded encounter with the contractor from hell?”


Welcome to Contractors From Hell.com

and the

“Home [Pre]modeling Bootcamp For Women”
(and the men who love them!)


A site dedicated to providing information and resources on the do’s and don’t’s of home remodeling, hiring contractors, homeowners rights and more importantly, understanding that it is the homeowners responsibility to ensure that their rights are protected and not violated by unethical contractors. Read More…


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It’s an unfortunate fact, that – according to the Consumer Federation of America and The National Association of Consumer Agency Administrators – home improvement has consistently ranked as one of the top 2 industries noted for consumer fraud and customer dissatisfaction in the last decade.

It’s also a fact that for as many sites as there are on the web that provide information and remodeling advice for homeowners – mine included – folks continue to have terrible experiences and choose their contractor poorly. State and local regulatory agencies also offer advice for folks when they’re researching a contractors’ license but it seems that little attention is given to their suggestions.

And there are plenty of books out there on the subject of how to have a positive remodeling experience yet its not on people’s priority list to purchase. No, instead they immediately start researching on line, begin searching for an architect or designer and move right into looking for contractors. They talk to folks, perhaps in their neighborhoods, who have done some remodeling, peruse magazines for ideas and determine their budget.

Yes, these are helpful but its not being conducted in the right order of things and more importantly, key steps in pre-renovation planning are missing. Moreover, depending on the size of your project we’re talking 4-6 months to a year of “pre-planning” before you even get to hiring a contractor. This is what I believe to be the missing ingredient people overlook and have no clear idea about that gives rise to having a home remodeling nightmare or frustration and disappointment with a contractor.

So I’m on a Mission to change that thinking. I realize it’s a lofty notion, but I’m just sick of getting those emails from people who are upset because of shoddy work, their contractor is missing in action, they’re getting hit up for more money not stipulated in the contract, no change orders and get threatened with fraudulent liens slapped on their property. They need help and they’re angry and frustrated (oh yeah, been there done that) and at this point all I can offer them are steps they can take to document the problems and time to call a construction law attorney. And they never saw it coming because they didn’t plan properly or took the time to educate themselves about the process.

Homeowners need to take responsibility to educate themselves on the realities and risks in renovating a home. Don’t rely solely on the architect or contractor to do this because if you’ve chosen poorly you run the risk of getting burned.

Take the time to learn about the pre-renovation process or the [Pre]modeling process as I like to call it, that is critical to undertake BEFORE the hunt for a designer, architect and contractor begins. It’s about getting educated on every legal requirement for both the consumer and contractor and choosing an architect or designer. Get to know your contractor’s state laws and your local building permit requirements. Find out what clauses you must consider including as part of your contract and how to understand what a thoroughly written spec sheet requires. Conduct a thorough interview with the professionals you’re looking to hire. Ask the right questions. Conduct your background checks. Research everything and ask questions when you’re not sure.

All of this and more I cover in my “Home [Pre]modeling Bootcamp For Women and teh Men Who Love Them” and you can learn more about what’s in it for you here.
I created it with the input from construction consultants and had I gone through it 10 years ago, well this site would never had been born. But I also wanted to connect with those going through the Bootcamp so that I could be sure they had clarity and if questions came up later, they could contact me.

All of this for a fraction of what a consultation with an attorney would cost and you’re given everything to put together to present to an attorney in the end for contract review.

You’ll be saving potentially thousands to tens of thousands of dollars with construction problems and loss of control over your project and money. And that is huge.

So check it out, sign up and get started on your “PhD” course in remodeling, as in “Preventing Home Disasters” and be ready to have a more positive remodeling experience!

© 2000-2009 ContractorsFromHell.com LLC

 

Jody Costello

Americas’ Home Renovation Planning Expert

Home Improvement Expert

eLocal.com

Home Improvement Expert

eHow.com

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