For homeowners embarking on remodeling projects that involve more than one room, the average cost for this type of project is just under $40,000. For most people, this is a considerable amount of money. If you aren't taking the appropriate steps to protect yourself, your cost could far exceed this amount.

Contact the Permitting Office

Once you have your design plans in hand, it's time to head to your local permitting office. Most municipalities will require that you have a permit for your work and the permit will only be granted when the constructions methods and materials used are in line with the local requirements. Should you try to bypass this step, you may be required to demo your completed renovations, start all over and pay a hefty fine.

If your renovations include changes to the exterior of your home, you may also need to have the designs reviewed by your homeowner's association as they too may have building guidelines.

Choose the Appropriate Surety Bond

Before starting your project, make sure you understand that surety bonds go both ways. Just because the contractor has a surety bond, this does not mean you're protected. In some cases, the contractor's surety bond is primarily meant to protect their assets and sub-contractor pay.

It's best if the homeowner also has their own protection in the form of a performance bond. A performance bond is a type of surety bond that protects from any loss in the event the contractor does not perform based on the guidelines of your contract agreement. This can include not meeting time deadlines, material selections or issues with the design. A company like NFP, P & C, Inc. can make sure you're getting the right bond for your situation. 

Don't Sign a Certificate of Completion in Hast

At the end of the project, contract agreements generally require that you sign a certificate of completion. After this document is signed, the contractor receives final payment and is generally no longer required to complete any additional work as part of the project. Don't sign this document until you are certain that the project has been completed based on the agreement and to your liking.

Even if it's something as small as a countertop that extends a few inches longer than it was intended to. If you don't request that this error is corrected before signing the certificate, you may have to live with it or pay to have it corrected on your own.

Failure to make these accommodations could lead to unnecessary fines, incomplete work, or work that is of low-quality. Use these tips to stay within your budget and save on unnecessary expenses.

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