Happy Halloween, everyone! I hope you’ve celebrated this petrifying holiday by diving into horror films, braving haunted houses, and decorating your porches accordingly for tonight’s festivities. Today, I’d like to look at a few home remodeling nightmares that I’ve researched and heard about over the years and how best to avoid them. It’s been said before, but home remodeling can be a (excuse the pun beforehand) tricky process. Much can go wrong if you don’t plan ahead, and if you don’t, well, beware — the night is dark and full of terrors. Let’s make like a pumpkin and cut right into it, shall we?

What Horrors Lurk Around the Corner…

Here’s the thing, folks, everything might look good-and-dandy on the surface, but the more you dig, the more you reveal. That’s as much of a life lesson as it is a remodeling one, and in this case, in a home remodel, things can get ugly. And quickly. During the remodeling phase, there’s what I like to call “the demolition stage,” that all-too-happy moment where one gets to destroy in order to rebuild. It is during this initial stage that things can, quite literally, come crawling from the depths.   home remodeling   I’m of course talking about insect infestations — termites, ants, wasps — and then, of course, there’s the ever-so-lovely mold outbreak that can spread like wildfire and completely deteriorate your home. Finding the unexpected can be an absolute nightmare. My father and I once were once at a job site, it was “demo” day, and we were replacing linoleum with tile in a bathroom. After ripping all of it up, we noticed dry rot surrounding the plywood along the toilet, getting moldy and downright disgusting. This put a hold on the entire job and we had to make sure that we weren’t laying the new floors over moldy plywood. Essentially, we had to replace the entire subfloor, which took time, more money, and ibuprofen. home remodeling   In essence, you really never know what can be hiding underneath your pre-existing materials. Stranger Things have happened during home remodeling. Solution: It may sound like an exaggerated measure, but getting an inspection before beginning your remodel will probably be best. Logically speaking, it will cost less in the long run than having to completely stop your renovation and figure out the situation while your home is in mass disarray, your contractor is on the clock, and deadline is quickly approaching.  

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Beware of Who You Hire…

It’s true, finding good work these days is incredibly hard to find. It seems like most people just don’t want to put the hard work and dedication into a job or focus on the attention to detail to assure a gorgeous, lasting, awe-inspiring product like you should have in your home remodel. I’ve heard an abundance of horror stories in this respect, and the outcome is never a good one. In the slightest.   home remodeling   Before a client calls on a true craftsman, they’ll hire a beat-down, raggedy company that looks decent on paper (usually a lower price), invite them into their home, and literal hell breaks loose. Either they never show up on time, if at all, take 17 breaks during an 8-hour day (if you’re lucky), and when they do finish (usually well past deadline) the “finished” product looks like five toddlers picked up nail-and-hammer and played house as a playdate. What’s more, you ask? When you confront them on their sub-par work and express your concerns, they’ll begrudgingly nod their head in agreement. Then they’ll proceed to assure you “they’ll be back tomorrow to fix everything” and then completely disappear, making themselves unreachable by simply ignoring your phone calls. This, my friends, is a realistic approach to the term “ghost.”   home remodeling   Don’t be a victim to such trickery, and then have to call Ghostbusters after. Save yourselves the stress…although I’m sure Bill Murray would give you a few laughs. Solution: Before you hire a contractor, do your research. Ask your friends & family for recommendations, go on Better Business Bureau, analyze reviews, look at statistics, price comparisons, and examples of their work before you dive head first into near irreversible turmoil. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention our name, either. At Builders Surplus, we offer a free design consultation to help you gather your ideas, thoughts, and put everything on paper using pretty impressive programs. PLUS we offer installation services, as well. It’s a win-win for everyone, all around.   Contact-Designer-Shop-Ad  

The Madness of Measurements

I’ve talked a little about this before, but it’s something that needs to be stressed for convenient’s sake. In home remodeling, your numbers need to be as precise as humanly possible. An eighth of an inch may not seem like a lot initially, but in retrospect after forcibly trying to fit a wall cabinet in, destroying your drywall along in the process and adding a few pennies to the swear jar, you’re going to wish you gave that eighth of an inch some thought. Hindsight is more like 20/15 in that regard. Trust me. home remodeling Before you do anything, y’all, you need to make sure you have the proper measurements. There are few things more frustrating than having all of your brand-new, lavishly stunning cabinets sitting in the kitchen, but they won’t fit because tweedle-dee and tweedle-dum were off by more than an inch. The same goes for your countertops, sinks, backsplashes, listen, the list is endless. It’s Halloween, but I promise I’m really not trying to scare you. Stephen King does enough of that for everyone, but I am trying to paint a picture to make you understand that these horrors are very, very real.   home remodeling   Solution: Have a professional come out to your house and take your measurements. This way, everything is accurate, which is exactly what one hopes to have in home remodeling. Accuracy, above all, is key.  

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Troubled Minds Bring Tragedy & Turmoil

Alright, so that heading may or not be the most exaggerated statement in terms of this context, but you’ll see where I’m getting at in a minute. We all know a few people that are just way too indecisive, and usually that’s okay. It just means a person wants to take a second before they make the final call, but in home remodeling, this can be a heck of a conundrum.   home remodeling   Imagine, if you will, that you’re a contractor. Yes, here I go again, picking up the brush and the paint. I know this from experience, so buckle up. So, you’re a contractor, one that does excellent work, brilliant really, and the job is finished, complete, finite. You sit back and fold your arms, gazing at the details, the overall picture, mulling over in your head, task by task, piece by piece, and you’re finally able to witness the final product. Then your client sees it and begins to nitpick, but not about your work, no, the work is fine, but it’s the color of paint they personally picked out that they suddenly can no longer stand, or the type of fixtures or — and God forbid — “the tile just doesn’t look right with these cabinets.”   home remodeling   You’d be set in your own personal hell, in a never-ending loop, trying to completely satisfy a seemingly insatiable person. There have been quite a few jobs where my father and I have given each other the “oh, here we go” look because customers are indecisive and don’t know what they want before a job. This just causes more stress and work on the contractor, a huge hiccup in the entire process. Solution: Have a general, but strong idea about what you’re looking for. It’s okay to be on the fence during the beginning phases in home remodeling, but it’s another thing entirely when a full kitchen remodel is nearly complete and the customer decides they want different countertops, six days after they’ve been installed. If I sound bitter it’s because I am (lol). Just kidding. But really.   Alright, everyone, I hope yours truly provided you with an interestingly-enough, entertaining piece about how to avoid these unspeakable acts in home remodeling. All based on a true story, straight from the mind as meddlesome as the majority. But listen, be safe out there tonight, and steal all of your children’s Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. My father was notorious for that. Another true story. Happy Halloween, everyone, stay blessed!
Builders Surplus is a full service renovation company with locations in Louisville, Kentucky, and Newport, Kentucky, which also serves Cincinnati, Ohio. We are one of the leading providers of kitchen remodeling, bathroom remodeling, flooring and tile installations, windows and doors in Louisville, Newport, and Cincinnati. We specialize in interior design, kitchen design, quartz countertops, granite countertops, marble countertops, bathroom vanity tops, building materials, and home improvement. Interior Design and measurements come as a free service to our clients. We sell building materials ranging in every price point, from unfinished kitchen cabinets to top of the line Wellborn cabinets. In addition to interior design, we also offer installation services. If you have any questions or would like to set up a free design consultation with one of our interior designers, we would encourage you to do so. We love sharing our knowledge with clients & potential home renovators. We write about interior design, home decor, decorating ideas, and home improvement. We hope you’ll check back in for our next article! Happy Renovation! Written by: Chris Chamberlain    

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