Major home remodeling projects can get pretty expensive. To those who dream up the “perfect remodeling” project and know precisely what they want from a vendor, it can be incredibly easy to commoditize the industry. Eventually, the difference between one vendor and another becomes about the price rather than the value they bring. The unfortunate truth is that the differences between the great and not-so-great remodeling companies out there are not based on price. In other words, if you have been using a price tag to justify who you can trust, as well as who is a more experienced vendor, you may be in danger of making a grave mistake. Here’s what we’re getting at:
The Correlation (Or Lack Thereof) Between Price vs. Value
People frequently use price as an indicator of experience and trustworthiness. If a price is too high, the vendor is charging more than they’re worth, and if the price is too low, they’re most likely not a reliable partner. While there’s some truth to the statement, here are the facts:
Most remodeling companies are dealing with the same underlying costs – labor, materials, transportation, etc. The variance between those factors is incredibly miniscule, even between big and small, experienced and inexperienced companies. So how do you justify what’s “worth the price”?
You can’t pull the trigger on any major home renovations without first determining what value you’re looking for. Major home renovations aren’t as simple as a cabinet replacement. You’re talking about a company coming in for several weeks (or months) to work on your home, putting you in a position to work with or around scheduling, dust control, key renovation decisions (like selecting tile designs or other materials), and a slew of other things. So, what does – or should – “value” look like in your search? Here are a few major indicators of a valuable partner:
You need to feel some type of mutual connection and understanding of each other. If you’re working with a remodeling company on a major home remodel, the project may extend multiple weeks or months. That means everything from basic communication to key details regarding your preference for the remodel are all important. If you don’t feel like you have some level of established chemistry with a remodeling vendor up front, you can expect the rest of your communication through the duration of the project to feel the same.
2) Solutions & Unique Insights
You know what you want, but a good remodeling company should have their own opinion and insights to offer for any project.
Major home remodels are not a product – they are a strategy. And a valuable partner will have insights and solutions regarding what that strategy should look like.
Based on the level of engagement in your initial conversations and beginning phases of detailing out the project, you should be able to discern an experienced and insightful vendor apart from someone who’s just going to regurgitate your own preferences back to you.
We can’t stress how crucially important having an established process is. Home remodels can be intense and strenuous, and if you don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, they can be downright frustrating.
Whatever vendor you work with should have a process established. Knowing when they’ll be working, when sections will be done, when they need information from you, and other details along those lines are very valuable factors when it comes to selecting a remodeling company to work with. Without a process, you can expect that all to be a major mess.
It’s Not About Price
The above are just a few of many factors that determine the underlying value of a partner. A vendor that doesn’t have an established process may be massively underestimating the scope of work for a project, so an initial price tag on an RFQ might not be indicative of a final price.
Every vendor has the same underlying costs, so major home remodeling projects should never be made on the sole basis of price. They should be made on your confidence in a vendor’s ability to deliver, your trust in their communication procedures, and certainty that their process will make the impacts of living during a home remodeling project manageable. If you find a vendor who meshes well and understands your needs, work with them on the price – chances are, you’ll end up spending far less in the long-run.