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WORDS OF WISDOM

Before you start your home improvement project, let's compare
apples with apples
.

A) Make sure that if you comparison-shop, the list of materials and specifications, the labor done, and the service level from the Contractor is the same for all the estimates.

B) Be aware that the much lower estimates that may dazzle you into signing on the dotted line will usually necessitate several add-ons to get you what you want and will end up costing more to complete.

C) Another shortcut to a lower estimate is the fly-by-night, illegal operator that either just picked up a hammer during the latest high-unemployment period and called himself a carpenter, or the one who is experienced but does not follow the law or provide you with a written contract. If your Contractor is not registered with the State and insured, you might enjoy a lower price now, but you are foregoing protection and recourse.

During your home improvement project, be aware that this too shall pass.

Yes, home improvement work is a disturbance to your routine; it leaves daily dust and debris; it's noisy and it's inconvenient. But there will be a final clean-up; you will get used to the new layout; and soon you will wonder why you waited so long. For now, you can picture yourself six months after completion and for now tell yourself "this too shall pass".

"Is this really the bottom line price?"

During negotiation on an upcoming project, a customer asked the above question. She just could not believe that the price given would remain the same; everyone she asked told her they were charged more than anticipated. Were they right? As far as we're concerned, the answer is yes and no. Our price remains as quoted for the items quoted and the work quoted.

What will often happen, is that while work is in progress, the homeowner will talk with friends and relatives about other options, or will think of something else that would need to be done at the same time, and then will request those extras that were not in the original quote, and thus add to the final price. As this happens frequently, this is probably what started the rumor.

 

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Paul A. Michaud, Contractor.