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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

How does it work?

How much does it cost to hire ReNew Homes?

Why can’t I just serve as my own project manager?

What is the time frame for a typical large scale renovation?

Why do things change or go wrong during a project?

What about insurance and liability?

If we engage ReNew Homes, what are the next steps?

How does it work?

 

Essentially, when ReNew bids on a renovation job, we prepare a cost estimate including all material, professional fees, permits and costs. We also add a project management fee up front as a separate line item so you have a clear understanding of what the costs of our management and support will be.

 

Once the contract is successfully awarded, we hold a kick off meeting with the homeowner to finalize the schedule, project scope and establish the homeowners preferred project update and progress reporting. Some homeowners prefer weekly meetings, while some like continual/daily updates. Some like face to face interaction and on site visits and some prefer to get their updates on their iPhones and Blackberries. We work with you to figure out the best option.

 

We prepare multiple cost estimates for all major elements of the project to ensure homeowners get the best possible pricing. We can also source, research and recommend suppliers from our lists of reputable and proven suppliers.

 

Once the project begins, we are onsite daily to ensure progress is made, events run smoothly, and the project stays on time, on budget as expected. We also provide our homeowners with regular progress reports and deal with any issues that may arise (and they do!) This can include scheduling difficulties, issues that arise with neighbours, permit and worksite problems and dealing with significant changes and deviations that can sometimes occur. We will work with you to find good solutions, and to address any issues.

 

We will oversee all material and labour invoices – their arrival, double checking them for accuracy and presenting them to you for payment. We can also help you budget and plan a helpful payment schedule that works for you.

 

At the project’s conclusion, we will ensure building inspectors have signed off on all that is required.

How much does it cost to hire ReNew Homes?

 

Each project varies, according to time, complexity and requirements, but generally we tell potential clients that the cost for project management is approximately 5 – 20% of their total renovation budget, depending on duration, complexity, proximity/location, and on the level of service and detailed management required. For a fixed price general contractor, these fees would be similar, but hidden in the pricing and product and service mark-ups. Currently, the industry standard in Ottawa for fixed price contractors is around 20% of total cost. This tends to be on the high end especially when contractors are pricing a renovation on an older home; given the high degree of unknown and complex elements.

 

Project management isn’t always less expensive, but it often can be because the fees are set in advance. It is always more transparent. Typically, the rule of thumb for establishing a home renovation budget is to allow $150 – $250/ square foot, but this can range depending on the complexity, quality and level of finishing that is in place.

Why can’t I just serve as my own project manager?

 

You can. If you have experience with building and construction, working with designers, good contacts with reputable trades, a solid understanding of the local building code, a good idea of construction scheduling, material and time costs estimating, the required health and safety regulations, knowledge about permits and legislation, and negotiation and problem solving expertise.

 

Oh yes, you also will need to be on-site for the larger part of each day. Large-scale renovation projects require a high degree of day to day and on-site supervision. Projects are ever evolving, frequently changing dynamic environments; if you want to do it yourself, expect it to be a full time job.

What is the time frame for a typical large scale renovation?

 

Again, this varies considerably according to project. Generally, most large scale renovations involving some demolition, building and finishing can take from 3 – 6 months at a minimum, from the time you apply for your building permit to the paint touch ups and final building inspection.

 

A brand new home build is generally built in a time frame of between 6 and 9 months if managed well, or longer, depending on complexity.

 

On top of the building time, you must allow ample time to do any required research, develop your design, create your drawings (plus all the tweaks), and find your builder. We think this process needs at least 3 months to complete.

 

Generally speaking, when you are starting from scratch; work ahead 6-9 months when planning a major renovation or home build.

 

ReNew is also happy to help at the earliest stages, to provide some advice and things to think about when planning your design. There are so many wonderful designers and architects to work with, but they can do their jobs so much better (and more quickly!) if you come to them with a clear vision. We can help you get there.