Contract Planning

Ever wonder about the planning of what goes behind the construction project? Ever wonder why it takes so long at times to get special order items? Well this weeks blog hopefully will shed some light on these questions. So lets begin.

Lets say you want to do them small jobs before you have guests coming into town. Or you like to remodel that bathroom finally. So you have decided to call the local contractor but he is busy. Now you are like ugh. So from there you use a search engine and now you see hundreds of contractors and more search websites for contractors. Where to begin.

Look at the contractor’s websites and reviews. Some people will use Facebook. Some will use the Local Chamber of Commerce, or some will go just pick 3 that are local to them. So you call and let the contractor know the type of work you want done. Hopefully the 3 contractors you called will show up for the estimate. And you start by explaining to them the project at hand. For small jobs they could be a few hours to a couple of days. For the bathroom remodel a bit more. Either way you should get an estimate in about 3-4 days. Some take longer if there is special orders involved or multiple trades. But normally, no more then about 10 days.  Keep in mind you may not be the only client the contractor has proposals for.

So for the small jobs the contractor will prioritize of how they will do the work. If there are parts need to me ordered that will affect the start date. If there is outside work as well, weather needs to be considered. Then for the small jobs the work is started once the contractor has the materials. Sometimes the materials are delayed because the manufacture or supplier is out of stock. When this happens the process just took longer. Now the contractor is at will of the supplier, especially if it is a special order. So once the materials have arrived then the contractor will schedule with their client to perform the work.

But lets take the bathroom remodel. Sounds simple but you normally have 2 or 3 trades involved. If you are redoing a shower our client’s select and purchase the tile. And usually fixtures. Now the tile may take 14 days to get to the supplier. (oh boy) Then we have the plumber. The plumber needs to be notified about what they will be doing and want plenty of time. Again about 14 days. Then lets say the lighting needs to be changed, added or moved. The electrician comes to the project and again they probally like 14 day notice as well. So just from here the project may not start atleast 14 days out. But what if. Seriously the what if factor.

Now lets tell you how Pasco Home Remodeling & Repair will perform these tasks. The initial in home estimate is usually scheduled within 3 days from the initial call. Tad longer if near the weekend. Secondly, for small jobs our planning is simple. If there is materials that need special orders once we receive them a start date is then scheduled. This way we are only at your home once. The worst thing anybody wants is to have the contractor keep coming back. Also this will save you money and time too.

Now lets take the Bathroom Remodel. Normally, the clients want an estimate to see if its in their budget. Yes some contractors will be high and some low. Some may not do the job if it is under a certain amount do to their overhead.  So here is what we do that is tad different. We will figure the contract with the needed materials and trades. We work close with outher speciality trades as we have an understanding what their pricing is. (too a point) This will help the process. Once the estimate is approved from the client. We state. Get all the materials you are providing on site and then call us. Hey, this is your project. So pick the projects you are comfortable with, and not just the economical type. If its gonna take an extra week or so then so be it. Once you have all the materials on-site the contractor should make another visit to make sure all the materials will be proper for the job. (worst thing to happen is to be installing tile and not have another box because there is one box broken.)

Once this process is completed, then the contractor should schedule the other trades and begin the work. Now keep in mind unless the contractor has his own employees nothing is perfect. But normally the schedule should go from start to finish.  So as you can see from the day you start the I want to get stuff fixed around my home to completion it could take about 5 weeks of scheduling. But the wait will be worth the perfection of your new project.

For more information about these projects or others visit us at www.pascoremodel.com or call 352-437-5300. We glady perform projects in Land O Lakes, Holiday, Zephyrhills, and Lutz Florida all the time. We will be more then glad to visit your home anywhere to discuss the project you like to have done.

Thank You and Happy Easter to our followers!

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Happy New Year

As we close out 2016 and about to enter 2017. From our family to yours, we wish everyone a Safe and Prosperous Happy New Year. Our office will be closed on Monday 02 January and will resume normal business functions starting Tuesday. And our normal blogs will continue the first Sunday of January which we will be discussing carpentry.

Drafty Windows

Hello everyone. This weeks blog is about drafty windows. No matter if you are up north or here in Florida we are in the season where we are opening our windows more. So I wanted to share some useful tips about windows & how you may save on that heat bill. So, lets begin.

It does not matter if you have double or single hung windows. If the glass is triple pane or the old lead style glass with the wood frames. Some of us still have a jalious style for the sun room. All windows will allow a small draft in and allow heat or air condition to escape out. Its just the nature of the business. Now don’t be alarmed. Its actually good that it does.

There are a lot of window manufactures out there that say they are energy efficient windows. Some even go to the point of saying we will reduce your energy bill or pay the difference. (I wish that guarantee was around when I was kid visiting family in winter in Western MD back in the 70’s) So lets really take a look at this. A lot of your windows today that are installed are vinyl or wood style framed. You see the metal style when its usually a builder with new homes. And yes there are many different styles from a bow to bay window. A single hung to a double hung. Then you have new construction, replacement and my favorite stucco windows. But not to get too in depth with the manufacturing  the windows in a home allow sun and heat in with a breeze and keep the bad elements out. But you still have a draft.

Well lets start that every window and frame is going to allow a small bit of heat or cold in and out. The one reason is because the framing and installation. The insulation in the framing pocket may have holes in them. Also, the window may not be perfectly level and plum in the opening. The window may have shifted just enough over the years because of usage. Vinyl windows will expand and contract slightly to allow this draft. Again this is good. Think about it. If the frame was all rigid and tight there wouldn’t be that small allowance when the sun expands it or the cold makes the vinyl contract. This is really the gap I am referring that is almost impossible to control. But there are other measures. The window hardware and exterior maintenance too.

The hardware in the window is mainly a balance system. Back in the old days it was a lead weight with rope. Now we have gotten away from that system and have a bit more economical approach. The balances work on weight. So for example the balance has to hold the window sash’s weight.  When this part fails, normally the upper sash starts to seep down. Or the lower sash may not close tightly. This will allow a gap in the window where you will feel the temperature difference. The exterior caulking needs to be maintained too. This will allow moisture to enter the framing area and also allow that heat or cold in.

So here is a quick check to see if the windows need a bit of maintenance. On a hot day feel around the drywall area of the window. If it feels overly warm there maybe some insulation that needs attention or the window may need to be realigned. If the window lock does not latch easily then the tracks may need cleaning or the hardware replaced. And if you see any kind of moisture stains (moisture intrusion) then their is a leak on the outside and maybe from the caulk.

Now in closing, yes replacing the old wood style single pane windows with triple pane low e glass will save you money on utilities. Just remember the cost to install too. For more information call us at 352-437-5300 or look us up at: www.pascoremodel.com We service all of Port Richey, Zephyrhills, Hudson and Holiday Florida areas. Thank You.

Code Inspections

The blog is a few days early but wanted to share an experience about code inspections. The purpose of them and what could happen if you don’t get a permit.  So lets jump in.

When you are doing any type of major remodeling you should obtain a permit. A lot of municipalities will allow the home owners to be the general contractor or home owners can obtain a permit for like kitchen remodeling and other small renovations. Some municipalities will not allow home owners and unlicensed professionals to add new service for electrical, plumbing and or HVAC. So before starting the next remodeling project, check to see if you may need one with the local building department.

To start the local municipality will want permits for new fence, new air condition unit, siding, new windows, bathroom and kitchen remodeling. The reason behind this is because you may have multiple trades involved. For example, when Pasco Remodel, is contracted for a kitchen remodel you have us, probably an electrician and plumber. All aspects of this kitchen have to be fully operational for a final inspection. Think about it. Do you want the cabinets to be not level or the receptacles not energized properly when the contract is done.  Alot of people believe that once you obtain a permit, your taxes will go up due to improvements. This aspect isn’t true. Property taxes increase based on the area and improvements of the municipality. However, if you add an addition, yeah you added square footage to the home. So, you may have a slight increase based on the new square footage of the home compared to previous tax year.

Now, lets say you have the permit and are beginning the project. If its a contractor then they will have everything scheduled for this project. The other trades will have permits and additionally everything will be scheduled by the general or main contractor. This process is the easiest and runs smoothly. But, lets say the home owner is doing the work. OK, no biggy. But if the home owner does not schedule the contractors properly then the job can take months, instead of a few weeks. Also if the home owner is able to allow friends to help and they do not do the work properly and the inspections fail it is up to the home owner to correct the deficiencies performed by friends that are in the trades. This can become very expensive and time consuming. One reason is, the counter-top is waiting to template the counter-top then install it. They don’t want to wait manly because of any liabilities and also inventory.

So, now you may say, well we may need a bit of help to guide us. Home owners want to do the work as they take pride in the home. Contractors may be assigned a small part such as trim or tile installation and then they are completed that evolution. So whats the answer. Well this is how #PascoRemodel is different then other companies. First we can be a construction manager for the owner. Additonally, the owner is also a licensed home inspector in Florida and Maryland. Lastly, plans and review will want a blue print drawn. We can do that if we are the manager or consultant.

So in closing, we meet with home owners all the time that like to be part of the project. We will gladly assist in that phase. Or just be happy to install the trim and call it a day. So remember, before your next building project, consult with someone who is willing to work with you. A small fee for a consultant maybe better then having your place condemned if the work is not done properly.

For more information about this service, feel free to call us at 352-437-5300 or look us up on the web at: http://www.pascoremodel.com  We will gladly perform this type of service in Zephyrhills, Holiday, Hudson and Land O Lakes, Florida to name a few areas.

 

 

We are not handyman!

This blog this week is about a clarification of handyman. Few months ago, when we started to blog we stated that we do “handyman repairs”. These jobs are small jobs usually done at an hourly rate or semi-fixed rate. But we need to clarify @Pasco Home Remodeling & Repair of a certain entity. Handyman. So, lets begin with this.

In several states including Florida, a licensed contractor who has employees must have all license and insurance requirements met with local licensing divisions.  At Pasco Home Remodeling & Repair, we have employees, not daily hires.  We are licensed, insured, bonded and have workmen’s compensation insurance. Yes we are expanding and that requires additional licensing and insurance upgrades. When I started my business up north 17 years ago I have always been legal and above legal before terms of government were met. Since the one year anniversary, here in Florida for PHRR, we have had employees and are fully covered by insurance. Clients are covered by liability insurance. The owner, me, is covered with an owners insurance policy. And with that, we offer benefits to employees as well.

A typical “handyman” is one that does a small job that performs normally a verbal contract and is under $500.00 in gross sales with materials. OK, I am not putting these people down. However, as a homeowner hiring a non-licensed contractor the home owner can be fined as well as the handyman. Fines can be up to $10,000.00 or liens against a home. Now onward with what we do that is different to a typical guy in a truck.

Every job we perform, usually has an on-site visit at the home or commercial property to see this entity that the owner or agent wants to have completed. We have specials just as major referral networks but are in house which helps to keep overhead low. For example, a common term is #honeydo list. This is usually some items built into a proposal for a few hours or maybe 3 days. Our proposal is itemized and we do not discuss your budget. We do not use sales tactics. Our new clients normally receive some kind of discount for us to complete the job. Our technicians are fully trained and we go over and beyond the expectations of the client.  And when the contract is completed the owner or representative of the property receive written warranty documentation of 2 years of what is covered under our umbrella.

With this said, there is a difference between a licensed contractor doing small jobs in Zephyrhills or Port Richey and an unlicensed contractor that will go anywhere and does not care. Also a typical handyman will not offer a 2 full year warranty as we do. So when you want your next small job completed, call Pasco Home Remodeling & Repair. We are the “Can Do” Contractor For You! Our office #352-437-5300 or get us on the web at; pascoremodel.com  Thank You.

Trim Moldings

Good Morning. Today’s blog is about trim. Now for a lot of us we usually think that trim is for decorative purposes. For the most part yes. However, trim molding services actually as a lot of other purposes that we may not know. The reason I am writing this, I had a friends son ask me about this in Tampa, Florida and figured wow, good one. So lets begin.

Trim molding for doors, windows, walls, and flooring have two main purposes. The first purpose is to cover the rough framing or gap as needed for that element. For example, If you have a window that has trim around the edge, it normally is covering the 2×4’s and insulation. Then it is sealed to prevent any bugs or drafts entering the home. This will be the same for trim around door frames, interior or exterior doors.  The second purpose of course as we all know is decorative. Especially, the box style ceiling or the picture frames.

Now lets talk about the trim you may see in a room say a dinning room. The trim placed there is strategically placed that dates back into history. Yes when you walk into a dinning room and see the trim it gives a presence of eye candy to make the room more charming and appealing. The crown molding when it was originally placed in homes was installed to cover the cracks that may appear in the upper corners from the old plaster. Also the trim was placed to help with house keeping. When the trim was originally painted they used oil base paint with a gloss sheen. This in turn helped with cleaning.

Now you have the baseboard trim and the floor trim. Yes both are different. The baseboard trim serves as a purpose to cover any gaps from the drywall when installed. Normally drywall is installed about a 1/2″ off the floor for leveling and if water gets on the floor. Also again, the trim is installed to assist cleaning to collect the dust and protect the walls from moving furniture and the good old vacuum cleaner. Then you have the floor trim. Alot of people do not use this term. Floor trim is the  1/4 round or shoe molding that goes on and is nailed to the baseboard. You only see this trim installed with hardwood or engineered flooring products. The purpose of this trim is only for covering the gaps because the floor product needs an expansion gap which the baseboard trim may or may not cover.

And to save the best for last and my favorite is the chair rail trim. Yes it is just for that. The trim is usually installed about 44 inches from the floor. It is not to cover the seam of the drywall at 48 inches.  As I stated early in the blog, your typical dinning room would have trim placed strategically areas for a reason. Chair rail molding is very dectorative and I feel gives any room, espeically the dinning room a sense of formal appeal. And yes, the trim is supposed to take a beating. Moving the chair and it may hit the trim.

Now, that you have a better understanding about trim molding, I hope this helps anyone. We can talk more in another blog about paint and stain coverings for of different wood trim and engineered trim in another blog. We can proudly install trim in your home in the Zephyrhills, Bayonet Point, Holiday, and Tarpon Springs Florida area.  If you have any questions, please call us anytime at 352-322-2700 or visit our website, www.pascoremodel.com

Differences Between Small Jobs & Handyman

I wanted to take this time to share the difference between what a contractor does when performing small jobs and the local handyman. There is a big difference. Now I am not taking anything away from people who perform odd or small jobs. They may have the experience or are retired. However, there are ones out there that are just not informed or trained properly. The blog this week will inform you the difference and what to ask when selecting someone to do a small job. So lets begin.

We get calls all the time to perform small jobs for clients. Just today we completed a variety of tasks for a property owner who is renting a small town home in Land O Lakes, Florida. The jobs were small and we itemized the billing so the owner knew what he was be billed for. At the end of the day, the renter stated that one bedroom door was not closing properly.  On the initial walk thru it was never mentioned about this. So in attempt to fix the door, we found that the door is a 32″ door and not a 30″ door which would had properly fit the frame. This is an example of a person not knowing the proper way to install doors. Also very un-professional for everybody.  We installed the new door and everything was fine. On something like this contract, the jobs were small and were done correctly. We made sure the renter was satisfied and if they had any questions. After our job is complete we warranty that contract for 2 years, not 1 year as required.  And yes  if there is issues, then we make sure its taken care of. Sometimes hardware fails. Sometimes humidity will play factors and we will have to plan the door down from winter to summer. No charge to the client.

Now lets talk about the local guy. Biggest question is to ask is the experience.. Like I said before, some are near retirement and just want some small jobs to keep busy. That is fine. But in the example above, would he had been able to install the door properly? Or would he cut about an inch off each side and try to make it fit. Another thing to ask people is license and insurance. And lastly, the local guy may not have a warranty. Will he come back if the caulk shrinks up on the tub? If the door swells will he plan it down that 1/16″ if need be?

So in closing, there are handyman that do small jobs but may not be properly experienced or reliable for that job. And there is contractors that do small jobs for clients and will stand by their work. So next time you are looking to hire someone, ask them. After all, the in home estimate is like a short interview. Both parties want to be a good fit for each other. We provide these type of services and others in Dade City, Wesley Chapel, Bayonet Point and Holiday Florida all the time. Feel free to call us at 352-437-5300 or look us up on the web; http://www.pascoremodel.com  Thank You.

Framing

I wanted to write this blog today about framing. When you look at structures the back bone of the structure is the framing. Whether its metal or wood. With out it you don’t have interior walls and the drywall is not going up. So lets talk about the good and bad jobs of framing.

When you are framing walls, they are usually 16 or 24 inches on center. Floor joists are normally 16 inches on center but can vary from 12 to 24 inches depending the application. And yes your roof trusses are 24 inches on center. Ok that is the basics that you learn as a carpenter the first day on the job.  But over time you learn more and more. I have been doing framing for over 20 years and I like to say I am still learning. But seriously. When a carpenter is framing out for interior walls, structural membranes or just furring strips for a room that is converted to a family room from the 3 season room. The framing membranes have to be straight, dry, not cracked or warped and also have to hold the weight of the item you are placing on the wall. Which means it has to be self supporting or attached with fasteners.

Alot of people think that they can take wood and put it up and call it framed. Not true. The true carpenter will know what to use and how to use certain hardware and how to use even the bad wood for certain items.  Now there is a difference from the true carpenter to just a novice. The novice may not take in consideration the extra prep work of framing the walls. Additionally, as odd as it may seem, using a level for framing walls is not correct. Plumb bobs and tape measure or laser levels.  Lastly, when a consumer wants something framed, they should asked have you done this type of work before. Framing a deck, stairs, or just a small wall. Also framing a wall with wood will not be perfectly level. Close but not perfect. The reason is because the wood will always be a 1/16″ different from each. Check it. The nominal measurement for a 2×4 is 1 5/8 x 3 5/8 but will vary.

So in closing, when framing out an area or hiring someone the quality control on the project of selecting the best framing members is essential. Installing them correctly is also essential because of one reason. With out them being plumb the drywall will not attach right and you will see imperfections.  And also the framers will take pride in building what you want correctly the first time.

We perform framing of all types throughout Pasco and Pinellas County. From Clearwater to Zephyrhills, from Hudson to Wesley Chapel. For more information, call us at 352-437-5300 or visit our website; www.pascoremodel.com

 

Preserving Exterior Wood

Hello all. Well we are now officially into Summer. In the west central Florida area this means rain almost every day. Also, this means the time to take care of the outside projects as the heat will be upon us. This weeks blog is about preserving the exterior wood on your home and backyard.  As I mentioned earlier, the sun can be horrible this time of the year. So I wanted to discuss some easy low maintenance tips to help you out.

First, if you have any exterior wood on the home that has not been painted in the past 4-5 years, you may wanna start budgeting for this. The heat and the rain can cause many issues especially with wood decay, wood rot, and bring on little pests that destroy the wood.  Using an exterior primer for all wood is the key to long lasting preservation. The primer is a thinner sealant and can get into the pores of the wood to help maintain its life. Also, you may need to consider, sanding any loose paint and caulk from the areas prior to starting. Then your top coat of paint or stain needs to be long lasting. Do not go for the cheap budget paint. It won’t last. For a sharp appearance, I always use a top grade paint and usually gloss finish. The gloss finish helps with the sun and rain over time to keep the nice bright look.

Now lets talk about the wood around the landscape. We usually start repairing or installing new fencing, landscaping timbers, or just maintain what we have. With new wood for decks and fencing its important to let the wood acclimate to the climate before staining. I have found out using a sealer in the fall such as a clear coat works well. Then come back prior to summer and stain.  If you have existing wood, then now is the time to power-wash the area. Keep the grime and slime off. If you like the wood look then apply a clear coat stain. If the wood products are starting to show age, then now is the time to maybe apply a light color stain to start to hide the knots and wood decay. If your deck or fence is old and is really aged. A dark stain is the way to go.  This will definitely hide any defects or try too.

Remember, with wood fencing, railings and decks there is more maintenance but the natural look goes along way. For more information about this blog or if you have any questions, feel free to call us anytime at: 352-322-2700 or email at; pascoremodel@gmail.com

We gladly service the Land O Lakes, Trinity, Holiday and Zephyhills Florida area for estimates the next day at the latest. Thank You.

 

Moisture Intrusion

With the rain storm we are experiencing in Florida this week, I wanted to share about water leaks and what you can do to prevent and/or repair the area.

Water leaks are a mess, this we all know. It cost money, time, aggravation and most of all it can ruin some family heirlooms.  So you may noticed water getting in crevis and cracks that you never thought of.  So if you notice after the rain, the water getting in thru windows, maybe water stains on the drywall, or into the garage. Also, if you have a modular home the crawl space is very important to make sure that that area is dry. So, lets begin about this topic.

If you notice water getting in the windows when they are closed there is likely the window seals have expired or the window is not closing all the way. Some windows with the balances control the window to stay closed and used to keep up. The balances may need replacing, the tracks need cleaning, the caulking on the exterior needs to be re-done. This is just few examples of what is occurring. Now if the that is not the case, there is times where especially on modular/mobile homes the water gets behind the siding and can cause damage to the framing and drywall. If that is the case, then normally there is no flashing around the windows or moisture barrier on the sheathing.

So, with heavy rain, we also get roof leaks. If the shingles are about to expire and heavy rain is occurring  this will be a sign to replace the shingles. Additionally, the vents and the flashing on the roof may need to be re-tarred or replaced. Alot of times, with heavy rains, the drip edge and soffit is not secured to the home.

Lastly, we all will experience some water entering the garage. This can be prevented with either sand bags, a drain in front of the door, or the rubber seal not being dry rotted.  Also, gutters on homes will assist with land erosion around the foundation and diverting the water away from the foundation.  Making sure the gutters are not clogged is essential for this rain season.

So, I hope this helps with any issues. Of course feel free to call my office if you notice any issues with your home. We always provide free estimates and schedule our work in a timely manner. www.pascoremodel.com or 352-437-5300 We service areas from Zephyrhills to New Port Richey. From Holiday to Dade City. We are centrally located in Land O Lakes, Florida.