• Data gathering
  • Zoning review
  • Site plan review
  • Calculations and analysis
  • Measured drawings of the existing premises
  • Space planning and design development
  • Budgeting
  • Tender and scope of work packages
  • Bid assessment
  • Contract review
  • Financing strategies and options
  • Building permit process

 

Over the past couple of years, we have seen a significant increase in the number of clients who have accepted the fact that they need assistance in the early stages of their contemplated projects.  Admitting this is often the most difficult step for an Owner.  This can be both a daunting and fairly labour intensive step for anyone, especially for those who have never attempted either a renovation or construction project before: it’s foreign territory, and they don’t speak the language.

Proper guidance from a specialized professional can effectively move a project from a mass of generalized, conceptual ideas into one clear, sharp, focussed and substantive vision with “firmer edges”.

In real terms, this can prove to be a most beneficial process when it comes to making proper long term project decisions and in the establishment a workable, affordable project budget that includes not only the cost of construction, but a healthy contingency, all design and consulting fees, land taxes, application fees, all legal, moving costs etc.

At House Calls Project Management, our main focus in this phase is to help our clients by developing a detailed overall project budget that lays out options, strategies and recommendations about the best choices on how to proceed.  For example, what is the best strategy when you are faced with the choice of selling an existing home because it is too small, especially when you don’t want to leave your beloved neighbourhood and its amenities?  Is it a good idea to improve or expand an existing home, and if so, how much is appropriate to match one’s financial circumstances?  How important is the market context of their property?  Thus, long before we at House Calls Project Management even think about the physical design, we spend valuable time determining appropriate outcomes that suit your requirements.

We help our clients avoid taking on a project that clearly is financially out-sized or over-built for their purposes.   Once a meaningful “all in” budget has agreed to, we start to consider what can be accomplished within the bounds of that budget.  Choices need to be made. Options need to be explored.  It’s a fact that it is a lot less expensive to do all this on paper, than to have to deal with an under-qualified contractor or an over-budget project. That’s usually when the reno nightmares begin.

There are many steps to be taken before construction on the site can actually begin. Establishing an acceptable, workable contract with a reliable constructor is obviously a key component of a successful project.  We help our clients avoid the many pitfalls of the contractor selection process.  We help our clients by reviewing, and where required, to negotiate contracts, both in terms of deliverables, quality control mechanisms, and schedule.

  • Proper start up protocols
  • Site safety
  • Project monitoring for quality and schedule
  • Site reviews
  • Control of contractor
  • Invoice accuracy
  • Expenses
For those clients who have already moved through the Pre-construction phase, often the biggest challenge is to maintain a high level of trust in the contractor, and then stay out of his way.  For larger projects, you have turned over your home to a third party, and essentially the site belongs to the contractor until the work is completed.  Ideally, if all the project documentation was properly established during the pre-construction phase and incorporated into a valid contract, you should have nothing to worry about. Unfortunately, as we know from the many stories we hear, this is rarely the case.

As such, our range of services for this phase includes regular and periodic site visits, site reports, quality control review, invoice review for evaluation regarding the level of completion, and review of a variety of other construction related issues.

  • Deficiencies
  • Site turnover
  • Warranty items
  • Final payments
It’s been said that the last 5% of a project is the most difficult.  Everyone is anxious to see the finished result, move back in, and start enjoying the new space.  Deficiencies will crop up on every project.  How willing and able is your contractor in dealing with these on a timely basis?  Sometimes, especially if a contractor has been overpaid, it is simply not worth his while to return, thereby leaving the owner with a frustrating problem.

The turn over of the project from contractor to owner, (whether this is on a small, but especially on a large project),  needs to be done with care and precision.  This is one area where a professional can really help.

For example, mechanical and electrical equipment, or other systems that are covered by a warranty should be tested before occupancy.  The results should verify that warrantied items and systems meet all the manufacturer’s specifications.  If not, an owner should not take possession of those items.

Having a professional on your side can really make a difference: please feel free to call us anytime.