• Hometalker
  • Saint Louis, MO
Asked on Oct 20, 2017

Whole house renovation? Hire company or subcontractors?

Anne WingateSue2527884527524803


should I become the general contractor or have a Reno company ? Do I save that much $$$

5 answers
  • Hire a contractor. Depending upon what state you live in, it can open a pandoras box of headaches you do not want. You will now be an "employer" and need to cary a bunch of extra construction only insurance policies, be required to carry workers comp, (among others), be responsible for scheduling all inspections and know your building codes inside and out. Unless you have done this before, and know exactly what you are doing, it will take longer to complete and cost you more money in the long term. Talk to your insurance carrier for quotes and do not rely on them completely, contact your local "small business" authorities for information on what you must have in your state as well as your states Contractors License Board. Unless you have 24/7 to devote to your renovation and be on site at all times it is a recipe for problems.

    I know how hard and frustrating it is to interview and find a decent reliable GC for a project such as this, but will be worth the time and effort in the end considering the magnitude of this project.

    Sounds like a great project! Hope you will post photos. Have fun and good luck!
  • Sue25278845
    on Oct 20, 2017

    only become your own general contractor or you have the experience, training, unlimited time, unlimited professional contacts, and do not want to maintain contact with family. friends, job for the duration of the Reno. Also plAn time for therapy😃
  • 27524803
    on Oct 20, 2017

    You can act as your own contractor.... but it can be a complicated, involved process... and the operative word is INVOLVED... and best not done if you don't know what you are doing. Check out or Angie's List to find a contractor in your area. They only refer the best.. and when it comes to home renovations... do it right the first time... and that will save you a lot of headaches and money in the long run.
  • Sue25278845
    on Oct 20, 2017

    Continued from above...Research, research, research general contractors. Ask for 6 references from previous customers, and as many from suppliers, and business he contracts. Get firm timelines in writing as well as who is responsible for getting permits and inspections. Do not pay all up front. Actually go to places that he has worked before and check quality. If he refuses any of this, or tries to put you off or make you feel foolish for requiring this, move on.
  • Anne Wingate
    on Oct 20, 2017

    Whatever you decide to do, check its references carefully before you sign anything. Be sure they don't have a habit of promising and not delivering. In particular, you might want to go with the purchaser to the lumber and hardware stores and pay for the materials yourself using the company's professional discount. That way you know you're not paying the contractor for something you don't get. Trying to hire subcontractors is a headache you don't need. The company is better suited to hire the subcontractors, even if you wind up paying a little more. In our case, we already had an absolute genius of a handyman, and he did all the work, hiring subcontractors when he needed them and doing it himself with a couple of relatives when he didn't need the extra skills of a subcontractor. But I recommend against doing this unless you already have someone you know you can trust.
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