Taking on an extension or renovation project is a major undertaking and can be massively overwhelming.
Some homeowners may like the challenge of personally overseeing the whole process while others are hesitant because it is such an intimidating task.
Many of those who choose to project manage an extension or renovation often find that it ends up costing more due to their lack of expertise and experience.
The aim of this article is to give you a greater understanding of what’s involved in the entire process and why you should consider outsourcing the task to a professional.
The cost of hiring a professional builder may seem on the high side, however, they are worth their weight in gold as they can get the work done faster and with fewer mistakes and delays.
Let’s take a look now at what’s involved when it comes to project managing an extension or a renovation.
Design And Drafting
Having a clear design concept is the first step. Consulting a designer or architect to help you design and plan the renovation or extension will help you to come up with a design that is functional, practical and cost-effective.
When you have finalised the design, make sure you stick to it. Avoid adding or changing things along the way. A lot of homeowners tend to make changes and additions to the original design as they go along.
This is mostly because people tend to browse around or continue researching for designs even after the build has commenced. Avoid changes to the plans as these constant changes will add more time and cost to the project.
Plan! Plan! Plan!
Turning a dream space into a reality is not as easy as taking a clip from a magazine and breathing life into it. It takes a lot of planning and consultation with experts. The following items are a good starting point:
- Write down all your must-have design ideas.
- Make a list of the items you absolutely require.
- Set a calendar of activities and tasks.
- Use a planner so you don’t miss your schedule.
- Research local suppliers and vendors.
- Get quotes. Do not be afraid to negotiate.
Set A Budget
Controlling your budget is the most important aspect of any extension such as ground floor extensions or second storey extensions or any renovation projects. Dedicate a certain amount of money towards the project and stick to it.
It is also practical to set a contingency budget just in case but stick to the original budget as much as you can. You can do this by:
- Sign a fixed-price contract with your builder. This way, you are making them accountable for the budget too.
- If you choose to go ahead as an owner-builder:
- Choose materials, furniture, fixtures, and accessories in advance.
- Order materials in advance. Delays are mostly caused by hold-ups with material deliveries, and damage to materials like cracked or broken tiles and benchtops.
- Make sure all your materials and everything else you need are on hand when you start the build.
Choose A Reliable Builder And Tradespeople
When you choose to do it yourself, you will find that a major cause of delays can be the trades that work for you and material suppliers. Research and take your time in choosing the right tradespeople.
Hiring the wrong people can lead to increased costs, delays and other problems.
Set A Schedule
Make sure that everyone is aware of the schedule.
- Work to a job time schedule.
- Discuss progress regularly. You can set daily, weekly, and monthly progress meetings with your tradespeople.
- Make sure that you are all on the same page when it comes to the design, budget, and schedule.
Stay on top of everything by knowing and understanding all the specifications, the full scope of work, the plans and documents involved, etc.
A good project manager should know every single aspect of the project, as well as being able to delegate, monitor, and perform quality control among other things.
Aside from all of the above and taking responsibility for the build, it is also the project manager’s job to:
- To oversee the work of the contractors and subcontractors, tradespeople, etc.
- Deal with the local authorities like permits, planning, health and safety.
- Contract administration.
Coordinating with the design team and other professional consultants like:
- Structural Engineers
- Historical Building Specialists
- Landscapers and other professionals.
Tools And Equipment You Also Need To Purchase:
- Printed Plans (Pinned on the wall)
- Tape Measure (for checking dimensions)
- Scale Ruler
- Camera (to record progress)
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – hard hat, boots, work gloves, etc.
- Cleaning materials.
- Portable toilet for workers.
As we can see from the above, project managing an extension or renovation is a big responsibility and will take up a majority of your time and can be very stressful.
You will have to sacrifice a significant portion of your own time and overall, it can be a very overwhelming experience.
Why take on a major task when you can entrust the job to experienced professionals who can get the job done right, within budget and within schedule?
Period Extensions & Designs is an award-winning home extension and renovation specialist based in Melbourne. We can design, build and project manage your dream space without going over budget or over time.
Whether you need help with the design or the actual extension and renovation itself, please call us today at Period Extensions & Designs on (03) 8658 1340 or contact us through our contact form.