room addition contractor

Update: We’d like to take this opportunity to reignite the DIY vs. Professional debate: do you enjoy Do It Yourself home remodeling and are your skills to a high enough standard that you can save money but undertaking a project on your own? Or are there elements of the remodel that are simply beyond your capability and will require you to pay for the services of a contractor? There’s also the cost element; most of us can save money by carrying out work ourselves, but if you factor in the added stress of DIY then it may be more worthwhile to pay somebody else and save your sanity!

Most of us like to think we can do whatever we put our minds to doing. Some of us believe that if we have watched someone do something, we can then to the same thing ourselves. Sometimes that works; but sometimes it just does not work. Taking on a big project for which we don’t have the skills can quickly spiral out of control and become an even bigger problem. When it comes to building a home addition or taking on a significant home remodeling project, a home improvement and remodeling contractor can save your sanity.


Major remodeling and home additions are complex projects. These projects involve many steps, many workers, and a lot of management. In many localities, certain types of work (like electrical, plumbing, connecting gas lines, etc.) must be performed by licensed professionals. Then there is the matter of building permits, homeowner’s association stipulations, and required inspections.

A home improvement and remodeling contractor can save your sanity by managing the entire project. Your contractor knows which subcontractors are competent and reliable. Your contractor knows what permits and inspections are required. Your contractor knows what needs to be done to produce the results you want.

If you are an experienced do-it-yourselfer, and you want to be involved in part of the remodel, you can discuss this with your contractor and identify the most logical tasks for you to take on. This kind of conversation early in the hiring process will help the contractor create a truly workable schedule, including time for your contribution to the project, and be able to keep the entire project on schedule. In many cases, you will save time and money by focusing your efforts on pre-construction work (like demolition and site preparation) and finishing work (like painting, hanging wallpaper, etc.).

Hiring a home improvement and remodeling contractor to manage and complete the remodeling or home addition project also offers greater assurance of quality workmanship and the ability to deal with problems immediately when they arise. For example, if the plumber you hired yourself doesn’t show up as scheduled, you will need to handle a phone call from your spouse or some workman who will tell you he or she can’t do anything until the plumber completes that part of the project. Then you must either leave work to go home and make calls to find another plumber who is available immediately, and then at some point, you will pay a worker for waiting while you solve the problem.

A home improvement and remodeling contractor can save your sanity (and your money) by:

  • Hiring subcontractors and work crews known to provide quality work and to be reliable
  • Helping you identify ways to improve your design or save money on the project
  • Handling permit applications, inspections, etc.
  • Ensuring that your design meets all requirements of the locality and your homeowners association RemodelOrMove.com: Contractor Selection Workbook
  • Handling unexpected difficulties or problems with only one phone call to you to notify you of the problem and inform you what is being done to correct it
  • Maintaining quality standards in both materials and workmanship
  • Knowing how to protect your family and your property from damage or theft
  • Keeping the project on track and on schedule
  • Managing the project in a way that has the least impact on your family and your time

All things considered, you might discover it is well worth the cost to hire a reliable and competent home improvement and remodeling contractor to oversee the work of building an addition or remodeling your home.

Just remember these tips about hiring a contractor:

  • Interview as many contractors as possible
  • Organize information about the project and the contractors you interview
  • Choose the right contractor for the job
  • Get a contract based on final price
  • Have a well-written service contract
  • Use change orders as appropriate
  • Check on insurance and licensing

The right home improvement and remodeling contractor can save your sanity when you remodel your home or build an addition.