Sunday, September 11, 2011

going over budget on remodel project, what is a good reason

I finally put together a spreadsheet with the dollars spent so far. GASP. I am disgusted with myself. Others in the household are not as surprised/horrified.

We are over budget on the architect. I can attribute this to some false starts in direction and narrowing the scope of the project as we went along. He charges hourly and bills monthly so it kind of snuck away from me. The architect has also served as a designer so that is part of the extra cost. And as the project progresses, he will stop by and offer some contractor supervision. The architect is my secret weapon to ensuring this project does not go off the rails. We had city plan approval on July-11-2011 and Home Owner's Association Approval on July-26-2011 (within a month of submittal). It has taken us about two more months (with vacations, school starting, etc.) to select and document every single detail in the plans. This includes toilets, paint colors, finishes, windows, tile, sinks, cabinet pulls, faucets,and the like.

The goal is to have NO change orders and no cost surprises during the project. Basically, the idea is to hand the contractor the plans and say bid this, then build it exactly as specified. This approach, in turn, contributed to high architect costs. Many people pick out finishing items as they go along. I am attempting to apply the lessons from my job in project management (ounce of prevention, blah blah blah). We are trying to weight the front end with planning -- to avoid high costs on the back end from changing our minds or not thinking things through. I told Contractor #3 this was our goal, and he laughed and said,"We'll see."

Acknowledging the 10th anniversary of 9/11. May they rest in peace. And long may it wave.

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