A bathroom renovation is a massive project that can be equal parts exciting and stressful. While the end result of a well-executed bathroom renovation can be incredibly satisfying, there is often an element of anxiety about issues that may come up over the course of the renovation project. Everybody has either heard (or experienced firsthand) a horror story about contractors who left the job half-finished for months, were impossible to get in contact with or left a huge mess. In order to avoid any nasty surprises once the renovation is already underway, here are six questions you should always ask your contractor before your bathroom renovation begins. Any reputable, honest and trustworthy contractor will be more than happy to answer these questions and any attempts to avoid answering should set off alarm bells.
Can I see your insurance, contractor license number and examples of your past work?
You should only ever employ contractors who have all the appropriate insurance and licensing to undertake a bathroom renovation. This protects you and your home if something goes wrong during the renovation and ensure your contractor has the necessary expertise to carry out the renovation. Reputable contractors will also be happy to provide references so that you can see examples of their past work and even speak to previous clients about whether or not they were happy with the quality of the work, the timeframe for completion of the renovation, the level of communication and the costs.
What are the costs?
The contractor should include all anticipated costs in a comprehensive quote and should also outline which costs may be subject to change and under what circumstances changes would occur. If a change in cost is required, a variation notice must be issued which includes all details of the required changes, the revised completion date (if applicable), the reason for the increase in cost and the new total payable. This notice must be signed by both the client and contractor.
It is normal for your contractor to ask you for a deposit, but the maximum you can be asked to pay is 10% of the total price of the bathroom renovation.
How will we communicate?
One of the most important qualities of a good contractor is how well they communicate with your throughout the bathroom renovation process. You will need to keep up a consistent, reliable stream of communication during the renovation and your contractor should have a clear idea of how this communication will take place. If you do not like the mode or frequency of the suggested communication, you can suggest an alternative communication plan that suits the both of you. Having good communication with your contractor will also ensure you have plenty of advance notice about when you will be required on-site so that you can plan your schedule accordingly. You should also ensure you always have one another’s phone numbers for emergency after-hours calls.
What is the schedule for the renovation?
A well organised contractor will have a very clear idea of how long each stage of the bathroom renovation will take and will be able to provide you with an estimated schedule. You will need access to this schedule in order to track how the renovation is progressing and to be aware of when various workers will be on-site. With a bathroom renovation, a clear schedule is especially important, as it will indicate when bathroom fixtures such as the toilet and shower will be usable.
Who will be supervising the renovation?
Bathroom renovations usually require a range of sub-contractors, meaning that there will be various people working in your home at different times. There should be one person who is clearly tasked with supervising the work of the sub-contractors and ensuring your property is protected, respected and secured at the end of the day. The project supervisor will also be your direct point of contact for communication about the progress of the job and to address any queries or concerns.
How will you keep my house safe and clean?
The renovation process can be messy and demolition can create a lot of dust and debris which, if left uncontained, can spread throughout your house. Many contractors leave renovation sites with debris and dust still present and they may take weeks to remove the skip from your property. It is important to establish how mess will be minimised and when the skip will be removed from the site to ensure you aren’t left with a massive clean-up job after the renovation is complete.
Rennievate is more than happy to answer all these questions and any others you may have. We believe in establishing an open, honest and completely transparent relationship with all our clients, to ensure you feel at ease throughout the entire bathroom renovation process. With Rennievate, you will never have to worry about the progress of the job or feel nervous about asking questions; we love chatting with our clients and making sure the process as stress free as possible.