www.remodelormove.com’s A SMART remodel approach to remodeling allows homeowners to embark on a remodeling project and achieve results that are not only less expensive, but that are of much higher quality than many people typically find at the conclusion of a renovation project. A SMART approach to remodeling always puts Safety first.

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Putting safety first in your remodeling project involves several things:

The first and most obvious safety consideration when remodeling is the safety of your family. Be absolutely certain you are comfortable having the contractor you decide to hire in your home and around your family. Also consider your level of trust that your family will be safe with the subcontractors and workers this person will hire. Think about who will be home with your children when workers are on the premises. Also think about how the construction area will be sealed off from the rest of the home to prevent children or pets from wandering into the construction area and possibly being injured. Pets should also be kept out of the construction area at all times to prevent injury. Also consider that pets can be frightened or experience stress with strangers in the home and unfamiliar noises and odors.

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The second safety consideration when remodeling is the safety of the workers. Be sure your pets cannot access the construction area and that there is a defined area for storing materials and clear pathways from the storage area to the construction site. Talk with your contractor about how to make the site as safe as possible for everyone. Make sure that your contractor is carrying appropriate levels of liability, worker’s compensation and other insurance to protect him/her and you during the remodeling or addition project.

The third safety consideration in a remodel is protecting your home and your family by obtaining all necessary permits and inspections. Insist that all work be completed to code or above. Permits and inspections protect your family and property from dangerous shortcuts and shoddy work. Permits and inspections might be required (depending on your locality) for foundation, framing, electrical, plumbing and gas line work. These elements of the project are important and could, if not properly done, result in damage to the property or risk injury to your family.

Fourth, check with your insurance agent and be certain that you have adequate liability insurance and damage insurance on the property. Your coverage needs will probably change as a result of your remodel or addition. You might be wise to consider an umbrella policy while the work is being done to protect you from liability claims and workman’s compensation claims. You also might want to check the fine print in your contract to be certain of the contractor’s obligations if work is not completed as specified in the contract. If this is not covered you might want (particularly on a large project) to look into a bond to cover the cost of completing the job. Getting a warranty from the contractor on the materials and the workmanship should also be part of your agreement. A one-year warranty is the industry norm.

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Fifth, putting safety first in your remodel includes taking steps to protect personal property during a remodel. Take necessary steps to protect your landscaping and yard, as well as other parts of your home. Put fragile items in safe places and remove valuables from the home while work is being done.

A SMART remodel has six basic elements: A complete plan, putting Safety first, carefully considering whether you should Move or remodel, having A contractor interview plan, ensuring that your project is Right sized for your needs, and keeping your eye on the Total cost. As you plan your remodeling project, be sure you are putting safety first.

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