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general contractor fort collinsAre you a Northern Colorado homeowner thinking about a home renovation project? Thinking about what your home can be like after a renovation is exciting. The thought of finding a reliable home remodeling contractor to bring your vision to life… not so exciting. A lot of homeowners hesitate to get their renovation project underway because they fear hiring the wrong contractor. They’ve heard stories about contractors who don’t communicate well, worked too slowly, or do a poor job.

When you’re making a big investment you want to know you’re working with the right people. The good news is there are ways you can check to see if you’re hiring the right contractor before you hire them. This guide will give you the tools necessary to ensure you’ve done everything possible to hire a qualified and reliable home remodeling contractor.

Talk to People You Already Trust

 

The foundation of any healthy relationship is TRUST. The first step to finding a remodeling contractor you trust is asking friends and family for recommendations. From there you can move onto the National Association of the Remodeling Industry for a list of members in your area. Talk with local building inspectors; they will know which home renovation contractors consistently meet code requirements.

Social Proof

 

You’ve talked to the people you know directly, now see what past customers are saying. Reading online reviews is a great way to see the experience the community has had working with any business. It’s also a smart move to look into whether the company in question is a BBB member, and whether they have any previous complaints.

Pick up the Phone

 

Once you’ve assembled a list of candidates, make a quick call to each prospect and ask them these questions:

 

  • Can they take on a project like yours?
  • Can they give you a list of previous clients?
  • How many projects do they work on at the same time?
  • If they use subcontractors, how long have they used them?

 

The answers to these questions will reveal their availability, reliability, and how much attention they can give your project.

 

Meet in Person

 

You will have learned a lot and narrowed down your search after your phone interviews.  Choose three or four contractors to meet for estimates.  A contractor should be able to comfortably answer your questions.  When you meet in person, you can get a “feel” for another person. Pay attention to how you feel when communicating. Do they put you at ease with their transparency and ability to clearly communicate? Remember the contractor you choose will be in your home for days or weeks.

 

If you like their personality that’s good, but always check with the state consumer protection agency and your local Better Business Bureau before you hire a contractor to make sure they don’t have a history of disputes with clients or subcontractors.

 

Investigate

 

You’ve narrowed down your list, you’ve met in person, you have your estimates, now double check to see if the facts check out. Call the contractor’s former clients and ask about how the project went and ask if you can see the final result. If possible, go to a current job site and see for yourself how the contractor works. Check to see if the site looks organized and safe. See if the workers are professional and are careful with the homeowner’s property.

 

Plans & Bids

 

You’ve done your homework, and you have the information you need, now it’s time to get your project moving. Choose two or three contractors you that passed the vetting process and get some bids. A good renovation contractor will ask for your goals and what you hope to spend. The best way to compare bids is to ask for the contractors to break down the cost of materials, labor, profit margins and expenses. Usually, materials will account for 40 percent of the total cost, overhead and labor will also account for about 40 percent, which typically leaves a profit margin of about 15-20 percent.

 

Payment Schedule

 

It’s important to work out your payment schedule before you hire a contractor. Payment schedules can reveal a lot about a contractor’s financial security and work ethic. If they ask for a 50% deposit before any work takes place, they may have some financial issues or be worried you won’t pay after you see their workmanship. With Artisan Remodeling & Design, payment starts with an initial deposit for materials, and then weekly or bi-weekly payments ONLY based on work completed.

 

Don’t Let Price Guide You

 

If you take several bids and one bid is way lower than the others, throw it out. Contractors that present below market value bids are usually desperate for work, cutting corners, or both. You want a quality job, with good materials, done right the first time.  The great thing about getting multiple bids is it gives you an idea of what appropriate pricing should be for your project. If you receive a high bid ask the contractor why it’s higher, and they may give a good reason, and you may hire them because of it.

 

Get it in Writing

 

Once you’ve found the right contractor, you’ll want a contract that details every step of the project. It should include:

 

  • Payment schedule
  • Proof of liability insurance
  • Start date
  • Projected completion date
  • Specific materials & products to be used

Any change in the project, whether you change your mind about products or ask for additions, should be written into the contract, dated and signed by you and the contractor.

 

Ready for Your Home Renovation Project?

 

Now you have the knowledge to move forward and finally get started on your project. If you know you want to change your home, but are not sure exactly how, a good home renovation contractor will be able to help you, like US!! We will also be happy to show you different designs, suggest the best materials that will work with your style of home, and give you lots of fun options to choose from. But regardless of who you choose, just be sure to follow these guidelines. You’ll be glad you did.

 

If you have any questions about any step in the process of home renovation, call us today at 970-691-6995and check our work.

The world won’t soon forget the pandemic of 2020, and there’s no telling when the need for social distancing will end. While we all want things to go back to normal, many of us are still feeling a bit weary and prefer to stay at home, where we can remain safe and healthy. In this strange new reality it’s fair to say that at-home exercise and fitness solutions are no longer a luxury for health-minded homeowners. Fort Collins Home gyms have become a necessity.

Fortunately, designing and developing your own home gym is easier than you might think. Here’s how to get started!

1. Choose your Equipment

While you could design the space first and fill it later, working the other way around has its advantages. Different types of equipment may have different structural or electrical requirements, and laying out your equipment ahead of time will give you a good idea of how much space you’ll need.

A few examples of home exercise equipment to choose from include punching bags, stationary bicycles, rowing machines, elliptical trainers, treadmills, weight machines, and free weights/a weight bench, just to name a few.

Make sure to include both strength and endurance-focused equipment that you’ll enjoy using, along with floor space for stretching, in order to balance your workouts.

2. Find Your Space

Depending on your equipment and the amount of space it takes up you may be able to use a spare bedroom or a portion of your basement as-is. Or, you may find that you need to make some changes.

Finishing or remodeling a portion of the basement is probably the most common solution we see. Basements offer a cool, private, and out of the way space with plenty of room. With some drywall, good flooring, lighting, ventilation, and electrical access, basement gyms can be a winning choice. However, some homeowners find that the lack of natural light negatively impacts their motivation.

Spare bedrooms, on the other hand, already have light, power, and ventilation, but often lack the same wide-open open space and lack of distraction that you get in the basement. And when using an upper-level space you need to make sure that the weight of any heavy equipment is safely spread across your floor joists, not placed between them.

homegymfortcollins3. Make It Your Own

A home gym can be a simple as a floor mat and some headphones in the living room, or as complex as a brand new walk-out home addition with professional equipment. It’s up to you to do what you need to do to make your space a space that you’ll enjoy using in the long term, allowing you to cultivate healthy habits without heading out into public.

Some other elements and features you should consider including are:

  • Oversize mirrors for you to watch your form and track your progress
  • Audio/visual solutions so you can follow along with online classes or listen to music
  • Tough, non-slip, easy-to-clean hard flooring
  • Easy-clean rubber or foam floor pads and mats
  • Wall racks, hangers, and other accessible storage options
  • Ventilation, heating, or cooling to keep the air comfortable and remove stale odors
  • Lighting (preferably plenty of natural lighting as well)
  • Personal touches and décor to make you feel comfortable and at-home
Professional Basement and Home Remodeling

Remember, most home gyms pay for themselves surprisingly fast compared to a monthly gym membership. They’re an investment—an investment in your own health and convenience. 

If you’re interested designing and building your own home exercise center, contact Artisan Remodeling & Design at 970-691-6995 today. We’re an expert, local Fort Collins home remodeling company, and we would love to do what we can to help you get healthy and stay healthy right where you are.

Bathroom Remodeling - Artisan Remodeling & Design - Fort Collins

Sometimes it seems that you lose so many of the finer things in life when you lose your mobility. Whether it’s the difficulty in making all the arrangements to go on that dream vacation, or the embarrassment that comes with wheeling yourself into a luxury spa and having to get assistance maneuvering yourself from chair to table to pool for all the treatments, at some point you begin to let go of those things that you used to enjoy, and just say “it’s not worth it anymore.”

It doesn’t have to be that way. For example, you can still enjoy spa-level relaxation in the comfort and safety of your own home, by engaging bathroom remodeling contractors in Fort Collins to make some changes to your existing bathroom.

A professional renovation team can make sure that the bathroom is wide enough to accommodate a wheelchair or walker, and install grab bars in appropriate places to help you maneuver around the room. But most importantly, they can install one of the great new walk-in tubs now available on the market. Hydrotherapy is one of the best ways to help relax tense muscles, and gently flex and massage limbs that can move more freely with the buoyancy of water. Available water and air jets add to the soothing atmosphere and hand-held shower extensions help you get water everywhere you want it.

You can also choose between a traditional, full sized bather tub and a taller tub designed for use while seated. If you find that lying down in a tub as you once did, surrounded by candles and immersed in gently scented bubbles, is now a frightening thought because you might not be able to get up again, the taller tubs will still allow you to immerse yourself in bubbles while you remain securely seated on the built-in bench. Grab bars can be installed to make it easier for you to stand and walk out of your walk-in luxury spa, and there’s still plenty of room on the sides of the tub to safely place a votive candle or two, along with your favorite mp3 player to provide the soothing music you are accustomed to.

So don’t give up on pampering yourself just because you’re losing your mobility. For the cost of a few months’ treatments at the spa you used to patronize, you can bring that luxury, convenience, and enjoyment into your own bathroom. Contact us today to learn more.

General Contractor - Basement Remodeling Services

Have you decided it’s the perfect time to complete that kitchen or bath remodel? Are you looking for reliable Fort Collins General Contractor? If so, narrowing down your search can prove to be a bit challenging. Trusting the wrong contractor can end in disaster. The person may not complete the job to satisfaction, or the project might cost much more than estimated. Fortunately, there are ways to avert these types of situations.

Here are three tips to help you find your Fort Collins General Contractor

1. Get references. Even if a contractor appears trustworthy and professional, ask for a couple of references. Were these customers satisfied with the job? Did they have any complaints? Use this information to help you make a sound decision. We have a long list of happy customers who are always happy to speak to potential clients like yourself.

2. Contact the BBB. If there are unresolved complaints about the contractor, your local Better Business Bureau may have a record. Research the company to make sure you’re working with a reputable contractor. Click here to see our BBB profile: We’re “A” Rated!

3. Verify the contractor’s license. Only work with a licensed Fort Collins contractor. This ensures that he has the skills and credentials to complete your job. Contact your state’s Department of Consumer Affairs to conduct a license search. We happy to say we’re licensed in Fort Collins, Loveland, Windsor, Johnstown, and Larimer County.

The definition of the word “remodel” is fairly simple. It means to improve an existing structure or space. Generally, we associate it with changing the look of a home or office building, also known as residential remodeling and commercial remodeling, respectively. Though the definition is straightforward, the actual practice is quite complicated, and requires multiple steps in order for it to be successful. Working with Fort Collins general contractor, or with a firm devoted to remodeling in Fort Collins and Loveland, is highly recommended if you plan to embark on a Fort Collins remodeling job.

The majority of remodeling jobs, no matter their size, require the following steps.

1. Planning

This includes discussion of the scope of the renovation, and the drafts of the various steps throughout the process.

2. Engineering

It is during this phase that the actual “how” of the remodeling job must be answered. What tools, supplies, and personnel will make the remodeling possible?

3. Repair of the Structure

The actual work begins here, and requires skilled labor. Be careful here. I know of many people who have chosen the lowest priced bid and the results have been HORRENDOUS. I’m talking nightmare city. Always always ALWAYS choose a contractor with a valid, up-to-date license and a good, solid reputation. Please. I cannot stress how important this is. Granted, the cost of labor will likely be a bit more, but believe me, it’s worth every penny. You’d be amazed how much it costs to repair a job-gone-wrong. So in actuality, you’re probably saving yourself a good chunk of change by simply choosing the right contractor from the get-go.

4. Rebuilding

Anything that was torn down, moved, or altered in any way, during the Fort Collins remodeling process, is brought back into working order during this phase.

5. Finishing the Work

Creating coherence between the old and new portions of the space is important for making the remodeling job look polished. This can include everything from the molding, to the paint job, to the type of lacquer used on the wood in a home or office.