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  • Refurbish/Develop

    My latest refurb

    You should get more than one quote. Frankly I would want to see labour separate from materials. If I get three quotes and they are bidding on the same work the materials should be very close to the same (items and costs) while the labour could vary by a fair amount.
    Lowest is not always the best. You also want to avoid people who think they can make significant savings by changing what you are asking for only to raise the amount later after the work has started.
    Where is the project? I might be able to recommend 1 or 2 people you can speak with. Depending on the work that is needed they could provide a quote. One is a project manager who can arrange all the trades while the other is a builder who has his focus rather than doing everything.
    John Corey
    Follow me on Twitter -> https://www.twitter.com/john_corey
    https://www.ChelseaPrivateEquity.com/blog
    Crystal Diamond said:
    Hi Angela
    Fantastic job!
    I'm about to embark on my first refurb project and I wondered if you could give me some tips about how to deal with it professionally so that things go as smoothly as possible. The property flooded and a couple of ceilings came down. I have received one quote so far in the region of £20k but it doesn't have a breakdown of costs - is this the norm for major refurbs? I have been told that it will take about 6 weeks to complete - how do you make payments to your builders? How many quotes do you usually obtain before making a decision about who to use? I do not live close to the property so a local letting agent will be overseeing the works. I don't know every single item that needs to be rectified so I'm reliant on the builder to ensure that everything is included. I just want the property to be ready for tenants to move into when it's complete. Vanessa has suggested that I take up references when I've made a decision about which builder to use but any advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated. This property is a 3b semi and will be rented as a single family home.
    Crystal
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    John Corey 


    I host the London Real Estate Meet on the 2nd Tuesday of every month since 2005. If you have never been before, email me for the 'new visitor' link.

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    Also happy to chat on the phone. Pay It Forward; my way of giving back through sharing. Click on the link: PropertyFortress.com/Ask-John to book a time. I will call you at the time you selected. Nothing to buy. Just be prepared with your questions so we can use the 20 minutes wisely.

    Angela
    I wasn't expecting you to give me advice about the quote I received because that would be impossible for anyone to judge without having seen the damage but the advice you have given has been helpful. I received a good response on mybuilder.com. I didn't know about ratedpeople so I'll check that out. I've since had another quote that was about £5k less and I will arrange to get one more done.
    The flooding was caused by a burst pipe in the loft so I have ensured that the quote includes repair of pipes, lagging and insulation.
    Thank you for your advice.
    Crystal
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    Where did u get the furniture for your property?
    Crystal
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    Thank you to all of you for your advice - much appreciated. The furniture looks good Angela - I'll have to go to Ikea more often!
    John, the house is in Kettering, Northants but I have now had 3 quotes and have found a builder that has been quite thorough with his recommendations. He will be managing the whole project but I will ask my letting agent to visit a couple of times to see how the works are progressing as I am based in London.
    Angela, the builder I want to commission has quoted £16,472 for the works. However, he has asked for £6,472 before he starts; week 2 payment of £2,500, week 3 payment of £3,500 and £4,000 on completion. Would you agree to this payment schedule? Is this reasonable? He has given me one reference to call but I will ask for a couple more. I found him on https://www.ratedpeople.co.uk.
    I am concerned about paying this sort of money into the builder's personal account so any additional advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated. This is totally new to me so I'm trying not to make any costly mistakes.
    Could you please give some guidance as to what specificially should be stated in the contract. Thank you!
    Crystal
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    Crystal,
    I never pay upfront as a rule. For smaller jobs I pay in full once the job is done and I am happy with the work. If it is a bigger job I pay some money every week and a lump sum at the end. That way I can make sure they don't disappear with my money and finish the job off to my satisfaction.
    I hope this helps.
    Angela
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