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Ten Cost-Effective Ways to Renovate a Home

Are you planning a renovation project? If so, you undoubtedly need tips to make your project more cost-effective, says Jilly of the brand Jilly Plumbing. This article highlights the most cost-effective ways to renovate your home.

Do It Yourself

Perhaps, this is the most cost-effective way to renovate your home. You can save much money on labor costs by doing the work yourself. Of course, this option is not for everyone. It requires time, patience, and some level of expertise.

Focus On the Essentials

When planning a renovation, it is crucial to focus on the essentials. Identify the parts that need the most work and focus your efforts (and budget) on those areas. Don’t waste time and money on unnecessary projects that will not add value to your home.

Shop Around For the Best Deals

Get multiple quotes from different contractors and compare prices before deciding. Also, look for discounts and specials whenever possible. By shopping around, you can save significant money on your renovation project.

Use Recycled Materials

Using recycled materials wherever possible is also a cost-effective way to build a home. Recycled lumber, for example, can build walls, floors, and other structures. Other recycled materials can include countertops and flooring. Recycled materials will save you a significant amount of money.

Do the Work in Stages

If you are working with a limited budget, doing the work in stages may be the best option. You can spread the project’s cost over time by renovating one area at a time. And this can make it more affordable and allow you to complete the project without debt.

Get Creative

When it comes to renovations, get creative and think outside the box. There are many ways to save money on your renovation project without compromising quality or style. Get creative and explore all of your options before making any final decisions.

Hire a Professional

Doing the work yourself may seem like a good idea. However, sometimes it is best to hire a professional. A professional contractor can help you save time and money on your renovation project because they have the knowledge and experience to do the job right and can often get discounts on materials and labor. 

Consider Your Return on Investment

Before starting a home renovation project, it’s crucial to consider your return on investment (ROI). Will the renovations increase the value of your home? If not, you may want to reconsider the project or find ways to make it more cost-effective.

Know Your Limits

When it comes to renovations, it is essential to know your limits. If you are not comfortable doing specific work, hire a professional. Attempting to do too much can cost you more in the long run.

Get Multiple Estimates

Finally, when planning a home renovation project, get multiple estimates. And this will help you compare prices and find the most cost-effective option for your renovation. 

These tips can help you save significant money on your next home renovation project. Nevertheless, don’t ignore working with experts if the renovation involves tasks you can’t handle alone. …

How Building a House Could Save You Money

There are various reasons why most people choose to build homes instead of buying an existing residential property. However, after reading an in depth post from Jimmy over at Techy Ninjas, he goes to explain his experience that most homeowners do this because of the incredible cost-saving benefits. So, how does building a house save money? Here’s how constructing a home could save you money. 

Choice of Building Materials and Features 

Building materials often account for a more significant chunk of the overall construction costs. That means you could significantly reduce the costs if you are allowed to select the building materials. Building a house from scratch offers you the freedom of choosing various low-cost building materials and features to include. 

Several high-quality and affordable construction materials in the market can help you create your dream home with a minor financial strain. Overall, building a house allows you to customize almost every aspect of the construction project. For instance, you decide the materials and the contractor to hire. 

Lower Maintenance and Repairs 

Unlike old buildings, new houses’ designs and constructions meet the current building standards and codes. Newly built homes have unique features, fittings, and appliances for longevity. That will enable you to avoid conducting massive repairs and maintenance works on the building, saving lots of money in the long term.  

Energy-saving Features and Appliances 

Building a house also gives you the freedom to choose and install various energy-saving features and appliances across the living spaces. Energy-efficient home designs integrate unique elements, including energy-saving lighting and innovative HVAC systems. Those features and devices will enable you to cut utility costs such as electricity and water bills, thereby saving money over time. 

Building a house might seem like a very costly endeavor to some people. However, it also offers adequate opportunities for saving money, such as the choice of building materials and features, lower maintenance and repair costs, and energy-efficient home designs. …

Top Contractor Scams to Avoid

A contractor may seem legit to you until they get away with your money without doing anything for you in return. While you can find honest and hardworking contractors, some cons want to get away with your money. That’s why you should know how to identify contractor scams before you start searching for one. Here are the top contractor scams to be wary about during the hiring process.

I Will Need Some Money Upfront

Most potential homeowners report this contractor scam more often. A contractor will claim that they need money to rent some equipment or order some materials to start working on your project. And for this reason, you should give them 30% or even 50% of your project price upfront. After giving them your money, they can disappear or engage in slapdash work because they know you can’t fire them since they have your money. To avoid this, don’t prepay a contractor more than 10% of the project’s total price.

I Give You My Word

Once you meet a contractor for the first time, they can be agreeable with everything you say. That means they agree to do the job according to your unique specifications. Some can even suggest some upgrades or extra touches. Unfortunately, the contract might not include some of these details, but you assume it doesn’t matter since you discussed and agreed about them in person. After a while, you can notice that the contractor is skipping the extras. Upon confronting them, they will tell you that those features are not part of the price. That means you have to pay them to redo the work or live without the extras.

To avoid this scam, make sure that your contract includes everything. Every detail you discuss with the contractor should go into your written agreement to give you legal redress if they skip it.

I Have Cheap Material You Can Use

This hoax is a scam that driveway paving companies run using hot-top concrete and asphalt because they can’t return them to a supplier. Regardless of how reasonable the price is, please don’t accept the material because its quality is probably flawed.

Always be careful when selecting and working with a contractor. That’s the only way you can avoid contractor scams that may end up costing you a lot of money.…

What a House Plan Includes

A house plan includes the information required to construct a building. A building plan is a unique blueprint, and it varies depending on the designer. Here are some of the things included in a house plan.

Foundation Plan

A foundation plan’s look depends on the chosen design, and it shows the general foundation intent. A foundation can be a slab, a full basement, crawlspace, or a walk-out basement. It delineates the bearing walls’ location. These are the walls that support the entire structure. Also, the foundation plan identifies the location of structural elements like steel placement, footings.

Floor Plan

A floor plan shows the blueprints’ layout, an overview of every floor of a completed house. The floor plan shows parallel lines scaling at the width of every wall. A designer draws the floor dimensions between walls to specify the wall lengths and room sizes. Other structural elements that a floor plan can include are water heaters, sinks, and furnaces. It also shows the location of windows and doors.

Roof Plan

The roof plan describes all elements of the roof, such as the schematics of the valleys and peaks and the spacing notation. The roof plan can also include the roof surface slopes, roofing material notations, and chimney locations.

Exterior Elevations

An elevation is a non-perspective view of a house. Exterior elevations are drawn to the scale to make taking measurements of different aspects easy. They specify the final grade positioning, ridge heights, roof pitches, exterior finishes, and other details that create the architectural styling. A plan can include a rear, front, or both elevations’ sides.  

A house plan can also include the building cross sections, electrical layout, interior elevations and details, front perspective, and miscellaneous information. Nevertheless, the information contained in a house plan may vary depending on the designer.…

The Major Principles of Construction Project Management

Nancy Muldoon, a successful San Antonio Real Estate Agent shared with us in a recent interview that commercial construction project management is a complex field. This field extends to different functions. Most of these functions can be summarized as follows: 

  • Specification of the goals of a project and plans that include scope drawing, budgeting, scheduling, deciding on the achievement requisites, and selecting project participants. 
  • Boosting resource effectiveness via the acquisition of the necessary equipment and workforce. 
  • Conducting different operations via legit management and coordination of planning, contracting, design, estimating, and construction during the entire procedure. 
  • Efficient communication between the involved agents and resolution of conflicts. 

Key Principles of Construction Project Management 

For anybody that is entering the construction project management field, they should know the following major principles. 

Open Bid 

An open bid is inextricably connected to a public project. That means it’s like an auction that welcomes a contractor to make their offer. Open bids are promoted openly. 

Closed Bid 

Closed bids are parts of private projects. That means bid invitations are sent by project owners to specific contractors. 

Once the project owner has received buds for their project, they proceed to choose the contractor using any of these methods. 

Low-bid Selection 

This kind of selection focuses on the price. The contractor that presents the lowest bid is likely to be chosen for the project. The owner of the project proceeds with the lowest offer. 

Best Value Selection

With this process, price and qualifications play a significant role in the selection of the contractor. The owner goes for the bid that appeals to them the most in terms of money and quality. 

Qualifications-Based Selection 

This method is based on the qualifications of the contractor. Qualifications request enables the project owner to learn more about the contractor before they decide to hire them. The project owner focuses on the competencies and experience of the contractor.  

These are the most important principles of construction project management that a project owner and anybody that wants to venture into this field should know. …

Tips for Reducing Energy Consumption in a Building

Reducing energy consumption in a building can benefit both the environment and the property owner. As a building owner, you will save money when it comes to energy costs. You will also shrink the carbon footprint of your building when you reduce its energy consumption. But, how do you reduce energy consumption in your building? Here are tips that can help you achieve this. 

Upgrade Equipment and Systems 

If constructing a new home, make sure that it has the most energy-efficient equipment and systems. But, if you are living in a house that you want to make more energy-efficient, invest in modern equipment and systems. These include HVAC and appliances like dishwashers, refrigerators, and washing machines. 

Build with Green Walls 

A green wall is a great option when it comes to enhancing aesthetic value while reducing appliance use. A green wall is also called a living wall. This wall takes vertical gardening to an entirely new level. It comes with plants that breathe fresh air into the living space. This makes a building more eco-friendly. It also enhances the property value. 

Install LED Bulbs 

On average, most people don’t think much about the bulbs they buy and install in their homes. However, bulbs should be a major consideration when you have an entire building that requires new bulbs. LED bulbs consume a quarter of the total energy that is consumed by conventional bulbs. They also last longer. What’s more, LED bulbs radiate minimal heat. This can reduce the money spent on air conditioning further. 

Lower Water Consumption 

Water is among the resources that are taken for granted. However, it can make your building less energy efficient. Therefore, make sure that your building doesn’t have leaks to mitigate water overuse or misuse. Fixing leaks can help in conserving water. Also, fit fixtures like faucets with aerators for restricting flow. You can also use low-flow toilets to minimize water use. 

If looking for ways to reduce energy consumption in your building, talk to your contractor about these tips. Their proper implementation can also increase the value of your property while saving you money on monthly utility bills. …

Ways to Mitigate Against Construction Delays During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Construction may have been classified alongside other essential industries in some states and countries. However, COVID-related issues can still impact your construction project negatively. Such effects can cause delays in the completion of your project. As such, it’s crucial to know how you can mitigate construction delays during this pandemic. Here are some of the best ways to do that. 

Identify Possible Causes of Delay in Your Project 

Issues with the supply chain, government restrictions, and labor shortages are some of the things that can delay your construction project. Labor shortages have always been a growing problem in the industry in most countries and states. As such, the COVID-19 pandemic can easily exacerbate it. 

If you plan to import construction materials, their suppliers might not be classified as essential service providers. Thus, their delivery might be delayed and this can occasion delay in your construction project. Therefore, take time to consider all factors that may delay the completion of your construction project and come up with appropriate mitigation measures. Your contractors and material suppliers can help you come up with a more realistic timeline during COVID-19. 

Understand the Contract 

Don’t rush to sign the contract that the contractor presents without reading it. Instead, take your time to read and understand the details of your contract. Understand the timelines and liability for any delay, as well as, the cost impacts. Essentially, understand your obligations and rights regarding delays before you sign the contract for your construction project. 

Maintain Continuous Communication 

The COVID-19 pandemic is unprecedented. Its impacts have been felt by every sector, including the construction industry. A good way to mitigate the construction delays that may be occasioned by the COVID-19 pandemic is to communicate. For instance, if there will be a delay in material delivery, the supplier should communicate. If the labor shortage at the site will delay the completion of the building, the contractor should communicate. This will prevent unnecessary conflict among the involved parties. 

Understanding contractual rights, communicating effectively, and being proactive can help you mitigate against construction delays during the COVID-19 pandemic. Follow these tips to ensure that your construction project doesn’t come to a standstill due to this pandemic.  …

What Are the 5 Phases of Construction?

All construction projects generally follow a logical progression with a comprehensive schedule highlighting all the activities from the beginning to completion. While the stages may sometimes vary based on the nature of the construction activities, size of the project, and other factors, there are certain essential steps for all kinds of construction. The following are the five main phases of construction. 


This is the first step whereby you should start evaluating the project ahead to determine how to best prepare for it. You should properly examine the proposed solutions against your needs. You should narrow down your objectives and solutions to make sure that they align. Consult with your team to make a final informed decision. Both you and your team should be on the same page regarding the main objectives of the project. 


The planning stage is a critical phase whereby you must clearly outline a comprehensive roadmap for the entire project. You should identify the scope of the job; the resources required for executing those activities then, create a schedule. In the plan, you need to also highlight the goals, timeframes, and resources for each activity for evaluation. Besides, it should also include a proper budget for cost estimates for all the needed materials and labor for the construction. 


Putting the plan into action is where most of the work will be required. Proper communication is critical at this stage to ensure that the execution is as expected. Make sure that all the highlighted resources are allocated and made available to the workers on time. As the project progresses, you should record any diversions from the initial plan. Exercise flexibility as the project may sometimes need modifications along the way. 

Performance and Evaluation 

Performance and evaluation are phases that occur simultaneously as soon as the implementation of the project begins. The main objective is to make sure that the construction is conducted as per the stipulated plan. It also entails tracking costs and specific construction tasks to see if everything is executed as planned.


At the last stage, you should properly review the punch list to make sure that all the areas of weakness are addressed.  Confirm with your team about any other areas that you may have concerns with before handing over. 

Construction projects might seem very demanding but, understanding the basics like the five phases discussed above can make a huge difference and, prepare you to successfully tackle similar projects in the future. 

Feel free to research some great construction contractors and businesses by visiting this site here. https://www.homeadvisor.com/

Top 5 Question to ask a home contractor

When building a house, one of the key factors that guarantee a successful project is hiring the right construction contractor. The right contractor will provide you with quality and timely work while saving you lots of emotional and financial stress. 

To make sure that you hire the best contractor for your project, your contractor should answer the following questions to your satisfaction. In case you doubt the contractor’s answer of view on your project, you should explore other options. 

Here are 5 top questions to ask your potential candidates. 

  1. What’s your experience? 

If the contractor has over five years of experience in the construction industry, it means that they have already established a strong network of subcontractors and suppliers. Such a contractor is far way better to work on your project than a new contractor. 

However, if an inexperienced contractor can prove his abilities, then it’s worth giving them a chance. The key point is to make sure that the constructors have the skills and abilities to work with you. If the contractor is local, the better. 

To find out the contractor’s level of satisfaction, you can view his online client ratings and reviews, or ask to see his current or previous projects. If their reputation is good, then that’s an outstanding candidate to hire. 

  1. Who are your suppliers? 

A good contractor must offer quality work. It’s, therefore, important to find out the suppliers they work with. Once you get the details, dig deeper in those suppliers and find out if they offer quality products – If possible, you can visit them.

If the contractor is not comfortable telling you about their suppliers, it’s possible the suppliers are not legal or don’t offer quality products. You should not hire a contractor with such a network. 

  1. Are you licensed and insured?

If you’re going to work together with your contractor, you must ensure that they are licensed. But don’t trust their words – ask them to show you their licenses or license number. Most states require constructors to register with the state department in to conduct business. Make sure you verify that their license is valid and active. 

A good contractor should also have an insurance policy. Ask to see a copy of the policy and find out how much it covers. A good insurance policy should cover your property as well as a worker’s compensation coverage. In case the contractor is not adequately insured, you’ll be liable for any injuries or accidents that happen to the crew. 

  1. How can I get in touch with you? 

While most people Amy assume this question, it’s equally important. How will you pass information on to the contractor? You should get a physical business office, address, and phone number. If the contractor doesn’t provide these details, they are likely a scam, and you should not consider them at all, even if they promise you heaven. 

  1. What’s your price? 

While the price shouldn’t be the primary factor to determine whether a contractor is right for you, you should still discuss and agree on a certain fee before starting the project. If the contractor’s costs fall in your budget, then you can go ahead and hire them. 

Also, remember to ask them about the payment schedule. A reasonable contractor shouldn’t ask you to pay the full amount upfront. However, it’s important to discuss and agree on the terms before you begin the construction process. Make sure the fees are included in the contract.