Choosing Construction Companies: General Contractor or Builder?

When it comes to building a home of your own, there is no time better than now. In more ways than one, your home is one of the most important investments you can make. Not only is it bound to exponentially increase in value in the coming years, but it also gives you piece of mind knowing that you have something to call your own.

As you go along with the process, there are actually a number of things that you need to consider. In particular, you have to understand the difference between making use of a custom home builder and a general contractor. After all, like with any other investments, you have to be smart in the way you spend money.

What’s the Difference between a General Contractor and a Builder?

First of all, prospective clients need to have a full grasp of the difference between these two types. While they are both in the same industry, there are subtle differences between them. That being said let us put the matter in more concrete terms. Presented below is a quick guide to understanding how these companies work.

  • General Contractor – The way General Contractors work is that they organize the logistics behind the different aspects of the project. They oversee the whole construction yet they are not doing the work themselves. Instead, they bring in experts and subcontractors specializing in a particular trade. So, for example, let’s say you’re building a house in Charlotte, NC. A general contractor might bring in a local roofer, a Charlotte window replacement company, a deck builder, a plumber, and a whole host of other people to collaborate on a project. They do this throughout the different stages until the job is completed. They get profit from adding an additional charge for every finished subcontract.
  • Builders – This is the type of Construction Company that builds the project from the ground up, they do the whole housing project by themselves. They have their own crew who are more than capable of doing all jobs required in any home construction project.

There are also instances wherein subcontractors are brought in for parts of the job requiring special licenses such as plumbing and electrical works. However, unlike with General Contractors, they will not levy a separate charge for that. Additionally, since they will be in charge of the project all throughout, you will only have to deal with the one firm for the entire duration of the project.

Level of Involvement

When comparing these two types of construction companies, you also need to understand their level of involvement. While some of it has already been mentioned, it should be noted that the General Contractors are generally more detached from the project whereas the builders will be deeply involved the whole time.

For instance, during the earlier stages of planning, the builders will be there with you planning out the specifics. You will not get this from a General Contractor and you will most likely have to hire a separate architect before anything else.

Knowing the difference between these two types is crucial. Whichever option you decide to go with, keep in mind that client-contractor relationship is vital. This goes both ways, communication is vital to the success of your project.


Practical Home Maintenance: Basement Waterproofing

Homeowners need to understand that basement flooding is not to be taken lightly. It is actually a very serious problem. This is true not just for the basement itself, but for your entire home. This is because flooding can ultimately compromise the structural integrity of your house.

This article presents the importance of doing practical renovation work on your home. In particular, it focuses on the importance of waterproofing your basement.

The Problem with Basements

If you are like most people, your basement is probably one of the most neglected areas of your home. Most of the time, it is used solely for storage purposes, as a place to put in junk and other stuff that don’t really belong anywhere else. This is a shame, really, since most of the time the basement becomes just a waste of perfectly good space.

If renovated, the basement can actually have a multitude of uses. However, this cannot be done without commissioning a bit of home renovation. This is because most basements are so neglected that they develop problems like flooding.

The Importance of Basement Waterproofing

You have to act quickly. Before waterproofing, you have to make it your priority to find the water’s source. Remember, water does not just magically appear. It seeps in from the ground into the basement and the very foundations of your house. So, look closely as it can be caused by any number of things including cracks in the wall or weak structures.

Flooding not only presents a headache for homeowners, it always brings with it real dangers. Not to sound ominous but this simply means that the flooding in your basement is just a symptom of a much larger problem.

Hiring Professional Help

We highly recommend that you hire a construction company when dealing with a problem like this. This is because the whole process is not only time-consuming but it is also labor intensive. This is why you need professionals who know what they are doing.

For instance, finding the source of the flooding is easier said than done. Most of the time these cracks start out small and they cause very minimal leakage to the point that homeowners barely even notice them. However, as time goes by, you may be dealing with multiple cracks which are all equally hard to find.

As if this were not enough, even the application of waterproofing, demands a lot of work.  Once the contractors have found the source of the flooding, they have to fill it on both sides. Applying the substance inside would be easy enough but they will also have to do it on the wall’s exterior. That is why the contractors will have to dig no less than six feet right next to your wall just to apply the waterproofing directly. It is also vital that they fill in all the cracks to stop the flooding completely.

It is of vital importance that homeowners deal with their flooding problem immediately. We recommend that you find the right construction company who is up to the challenge.


Home Construction: Kitchen Redesign

Home improvement projects are vital. Not only do they increase your home’s resale value, but they also give you something fun to do. After all, you will be in charge of planning out the changes and adjustments you want to make.

However, another important aspect of this is finding a good contractor to help you make your vision a reality. You will need to find the right company to do this for you. This is of paramount importance. The right contractor is often the line that separates a dream kitchen from a redesign disaster.

Redesigning Your Kitchen

If you haven’t done a home improvement project before, then the kitchen is always a good place to start. Redesigning that particular section of the house is not only enjoyable, it is also very practical. After all, it is one of the most used areas in any home.

Kitchen redesign offers a vast ocean of opportunity. There are so many things you could do, that it might overwhelm beginners. That is why we have broken down a couple of the basic things you need to remember.

  • Remember Your Home’s Architecture – One of the most common mistakes people do when redesigning their kitchens is that they tend to overdo it. Sometimes, they completely overhaul the design even if it does not fit with the rest of the house’s architectural design. Make sure that you stick to your home’s roots as you give it a new look.
  • Color schemes – You need to make sure that you give ample time looking over the kitchen’s new color scheme. After all, that will be one of its most defining features. If we were to make a suggestion, choose the color combination that helps you feel at ease. With all the activity going on in the kitchen, the last thing you would want is a color scheme that makes you feel even more anxious.
  • Functionality – As much as you want the kitchen to reflect your personality, it is vital that you do not forget its main function. For instance, you need to ensure that the placing of cupboards and cabinets are practical and easy to reach.

Hiring a Construction Company

Of course, doing this entire renovation project on your own is still an option, but we cannot recommend it in good faith. Not only is it impractical, it is also wholly inefficient. In the end, you will be wasting your own time and money on something that could certainly have been done better.  This is why it is of vital importance that you hire a construction company that is up to the task.

There are a number of ways to find reputable construction firms nearby. You can either go online to do a ‘near me search’ or you can ask your friends and family for recommendations. Either way, you need to ask the companies for a meeting and a sample review, so that you can have a mutual understanding of what needs to happen on this project.

This article presents a couple of things you need to remember if you are considering having reconstruction work done in your kitchen.


Finding a Contractor near You

In order for a construction project to succeed, you need to make sure that you are on the same page with the contractor regarding matters of logistics, timeframe, and budget. However, before anything else, you need to find a construction company near you.

That is the simple part. Just go online and do a near me search. The search engine should be able to give you a few recommendations right off the bat. Make sure that you message the companies and get their contact details so that you can set a face-to-face meeting. Of course, you also have the option to ask your friends and family for recommendations.

Whichever method you use, you need to ensure that you take enough time and Interview the firms. You need to compare the company profiles in order to find the best candidate. We also recommend doing additional background checks on the contractors you find. If possible, ask them to provide a sample review.

It is important that you make a shortlist of the companies you find. While this may take a lot of time, it is a necessary part of the process.