Hire a PROfessional for National Remodeling Month

PROfessional Remodelers

Find a PRO-fessional to get your project started for Oregon and National Remodeling Month!

May is Oregon & National Remodeling Month

Home owners reap many benefits when hiring a professional remodeler for their home renovation. According to the Professional Remodelers Organization of the HBA of Metro Portland (PRO), experienced remodelers bring a multitude of skills and qualities to successfully execute a home remodeling project.

“Professionals just do home remodeling better,” said Steve Stolze, 2013 PRO Chairman. “They not only bring advanced construction skills, trained remodelers better manage customer service and business management to improve the remodeling experience for home owners.”

What qualities do professional remodelers provide to a home renovation?

Bring home the benefits of hiring a professional home remodeler for your renovation. Harness their skills and knowledge to create a more comfortable home.

1. Customer Service

Knowledgeable home remodelers understand that they are providing a service, not a one-size-fits-all product. Just as every home owner is an individual, each home is also unique. A professional remodeler knows how to create customized solutions for the residents and provide continuing customer support.

2. Business Management and Integrity

Running a business well is part of the responsibilities of a professional remodeler. This includes having systems for the business, writing clear contracts, having insurance, providing warranties, and more. Better business management means better service for home owners because they can rely on the remodeler to perform with integrity.

3. Experience

Do you know what to expect when you take that wall out? A professional remodeler understands the structure of a home and is prepared for surprises behind walls. They’ve developed expertise from performing home remodels, attending trainings, and are familiar with laws and regulation pertaining to home construction.

4. Longevity

Anyone may be able to purchase a truck and some tools, but only professional remodelers have the skills to remain in business for the long haul. By understanding the practice and business of home remodeling, these professionals can manage changes in the market and return to service your home for years to come. Use the remodelers you can trust to fix problems and keep a home in good health for the long term.

5. Creativity

Home remodeling frequently involves problem solving, such as maximizing existing space, strategically building additions, or navigating limited budgets. Professional remodelers can help home owners manage challenges and meet their needs while staying within the budget. Experience and skills help remodelers propose choices and solutions to satisfy their customers.

Professional Remodelers Organization

Work with a PRO!

For  a searchable directory of professional remodelers, builders, designers and other industry professionals visit http://hbapdx.org/member-directory/ and look for the PRO logo!  Please feel free to contact the Professional Remodelers Organization of Metro Portland at 503-684-1880.

Your Home, Our “PRO”fessionals

Your Resource for  Remodeling Professionals

Everything you want to see...<br />Everyone you need to meet.As we look forward to spring and early summer and the remodeling “season” kicks into high gear, homeowners all over the Portland Metro area are searching for a resource for professional contractors and service providers.  At the PRO, we are that resource.

The  Professional Remodelers Organization of the Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Portland (PRO) consists of the area’s top remodelers, subcontractors, and suppliers who work together to promote

quality and professionalism in the home remodeling industry. In the past 13 years, the organization has grown to 220 members and currently is the third largest in the United States.

PROLOGO_color“Our members take pride in their craft, have years of experience in the field and are knowledgeable about the newest and most innovative products on the market,” said Mitch Stanley, former Professional Remodelers Organization chairman. “One of the big reasons our group continues growing fast is that we are committed to ethical business conduct and we encourage our membership to invest in training and education.”

The National Home Builders Association estimates that Americans will spend $145 billion in home remodeling in 2013. Remodeling accounts for 2 percent of the US economy and 40 percent of all residential construction.

Each spring, the Professional Remodelers Organization produces the Tour of Remodeled Homes, which showcases the top remodeling projects in the area. They also are active participants in the Home Builder Association’s Spring and Fall Home and Garden Shows, and PRO members are involved in several fundraising events throughout the year to support local charities. In the last several years years, the group has raised thousands of dollars for the Home Builders Foundation, which creates shelter opportunities for the disadvantaged or transitional homeless and provides educational opportunities for future generations of industry professionals.  The PRO also won a national CADRE Award for their participation in the  complete remodel and upgrade of the Cordero House.

The organization has been recognized nationally for its energy, commitment to the industry, dedication to the community and government affairs efforts. To date, the Organization has won 12 prestigious  Council Awards for Demonstrating Remodeling Excellence (CADRE) the highest national honor any organization can receive. Category wins include Outstanding Community Service Project, Outstanding Member Services and Education and Outstanding Public Relations and Promotion Program. The PRO was also recognized nationally  with and Association Excellence Award (AEA) for their volunteer project building the Santa House at Bridgeport Village Shopping Center for the 2011-2013 holiday seasons.

To find out more about the professional members of the PRO, search our online directory and look for the PRO logo!

Translating Contractor Speak

photo by Kenny Grono, Buckminster Green, LLC

 

A brief but informative glimpse into common phrases that your remodeler may use to try to communicate issues or finesse a difficult topic.

Houzz.com contributor Kenny Grono, owner of Buckminster Green, LLC, took a moment to provide a brief list of translated terms that may help homeowners to better understand and communicate with their remodeling contractor.

Contractors didn’t become contractors because they love to communicate. If they did they would have become speechwriters or newscasters (or get a gig writing ideabooks for Houzz). Sometimes what they say seems completely obvious to them, but makes no sense to you. And a contractor might speak euphemistically to dance around difficult topics. These tips should help you translate some of the euphemisms and somewhat curt statements you might hear, so that you get the most out of the client-contractor relationship.

For Example:

7. The design needed some tweaking. Often, this means the plans were unbuildable. Sometimes what’s drawn on paper just can’t be built. A staircase you’d need to crawl on your knees to use, “existing” spaces that don’t exist, a pocket door that would slide through a switch box and the shower valve, etc.

Read the full article from Houzz.com to see a top ten list of common phrases and what they probably mean to you.

EPA Underestimates Cost and Overestimates Benefit of Lead Paint Rule

From our friends at the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), some recent news about the ongoing battle for legislation to restore the homeowners’ right to opt out of costly lead based paint removal protocols:

Recently, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Inspector General reported on the findings of an investigation into the agency’s economic analysis of the Lead: Renovation, Repair and Painting (LRRP) rule. Not surprisingly, that report determined that the EPA Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) underestimated the rule’s cost and overestimated its benefits.

Moreover, the EPA Inspector General found that the training manual and subsequent “certified renovator” training failed to clearly delineate which lead-safe work practices are mandated and which are simply recommendations.

For more information about what the National Association of Home Builders is doing to improve the effectiveness and reduce the cost of this rule, check out this recent article on Housing Zone by Professional Remodeler.

Checklist for Hiring a Professional Remodeler

Doing your homework will help you have a more successful experience.

Use this checklist to help you select a qualified and professional remodeler to work on your home.

  • Contact your local home builders’ association for the names of member remodelers: wwwhbapdx.org. You can search specifically for remodelers or you can search for specific services, but make sure to look for members with the PRO logo, indicating that they are members of the Professional Remodelers Organization.
  • Make sure the remodeler has a permanent business location and a good reputation with local banks and suppliers.
  • Find out how long they have been in the building business. It usually takes three to five years to establish a financially sound business. You want to make sure they will be around after the construction is complete to service any warranties.
  • Check out the company’s ratings online through review services like Google, Yelp, or Citysearch.  Also look to see if there have been any complaints filed with your local Better Business Bureau: www.bbb.org.
  • Make sure the remodeler has sufficient workers compensation and general liability insurance. If not, you may be liable for any construction-related accidents on your premises.
  • Ask the remodeler to provide you with names of previous customers. If they won’t, beware. If they do, ask the customers if they would hire the remodeler again.
  • Ask if you can see the remodelers work, both completed and in progress. Check for quality of workmanship and materials.
  • Do you feel you can easily communicate with the remodeler? Remember you will be in close contact with them throughout the construction process and afterward as you live in your new home.
  • Make sure the remodeler provides you with a complete and clearly written contract. The contract will benefit both of you!
  • Be cautious of unusually low-priced bids. If the remodeler is unable to pay for the materials and labor as the project proceeds, this may indicate a potential problem. Keep in mind that less expensive does not necessarily mean better!
  • Verify that your remodeler is an EPA Lead-Safe Certified Renovator if you are planning work in a pre-1978 home that will disturb more than six square feet of painted surfaces inside the home or 20 square feet on the exterior of the home. Learn more about the EPA’s lead paint rule.

About Professional Remodelers Organization of the HBA
The Professional Remodelers Organization of the HBA of Metro Portland (PRO) has a core purpose to facilitate expert remodeling choices to all residents in the greater Portland area; and to unite remodelers and related industry professionals to create an environment which enables members to effectively and knowledgeably meet the needs of their clients and employees.

PRO is comprised of a growing and energetic group of remodelers, subcontractors and suppliers who take an active part in their community and association. Members have the opportunity to network, promote their business, and give back to their community through monthly luncheons, the Tour of Remodeled Homes and charity events.

Guest Post – What Process Works Best?

Please enjoy this snippet from an informative and entertaining post by one of our Professional Remodeling Organization (PRO) members:

Remodeling – What Process Works Best?

All remodeling starts the same.  Clients get the itch.  You purchase a new home and imagine what the space could be.   Or you have lived in a space for years and it no longer meets the demands of how you live.  Your kitchen layout and amenities aren’t up to par. You may look at outdated surfaces on fireplaces, kitchen cabinets, bathroom fixtures, counters and floors and think, “This has got to go.”  You might look at a wall closing off a kitchen and imagine an open space.  You may imagine a larger bathroom, a bigger closet, a screened in porch, a work out room, or a home office.

You move into a mindset.  You almost can’t stand it any longer!  Then you call an architect, an interior designer, or a remodeling professional. How do you know who to call first and what is the best process you might ask?  I might suggest starting by calling one of these professionals you trust and consider having them introduce you to a team.

I would like to introduce you to three main build processes.  The first is called ‘Design-Bid-Build’.  The second, I call ‘Build-Avoid-Design’, and the third is called ‘Design-Build’.

To find out more about each of these processes, please read the rest of Angela’s post here.

This post was provided by Angela Todd of Angela Todd Designs, a full service interior design firm in Portland, Oregon providing exceptional design and creative solutions for remodeling and build projects.

Why Hire a “PRO”fessional

PRO logo

Find a professional! Ask if they're a "PRO"

When planning your home remodel, choose to hire a professional for getting the job done right. Home owners can save time, aggravation, and money by hiring a professional remodeler. And the best place to find a professional is to hire a member of the Professional Remodelers Organization (PRO) of the Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Portland.

“Professional remodelers help home owners rejuvenate their residences for beauty, efficiency, and comfort,” said Steve Klingerman, 2012 PRO Chair. “They save home owners time and money because these remodelers have years of training and home remodeling experience.”

Consider some of the qualities that make professional remodelers the best choice for your home remodel:

1. Technical training and experience in home remodeling.
These remodelers have years of technical training and experience that cannot be equaled by do-it-yourself books or television programs. They understand a home’s structure, electrical wiring, plumbing and other details that must be considered before attempting a home remodel. Inexperience and ignorance can create costly mistakes, but professional remodelers can prevent disasters and solve unexpected problems.

2. Ability to creatively address budget and space constraints.
Most remodelers relish the chance to employ new design solutions to reorganize and maximize space in a home. This ability to work with a home owner on their remodeling dreams within a budget is a specialty of many remodelers. They can help propose alternatives that keep the budget in check, such as providing a variety of product choices or redesigning interior space to minimize the need for building home additions.

3. Information on tax credits and other ways to save money.
Remodelers can help you cash in on energy efficiency tax credits for saving on remodeling expenses. These credits offer money back on installing energy efficiency improvements such as new windows, doors, insulation, roofing, and more (see http://www.nahb.org/efficiencytaxcredit for more information). Remodelers may also know of additional local or state credits, rebates, and other methods of saving money on your home remodel.

4. Commitment to excellent customer service.
A professional remodeler has solid business skills and understands that remodeling is about providing excellent customer service. These remodelers will take meetings and return phone calls to address customer concerns proactively. They prioritize customer satisfaction and take pride in their remodeling work.

5. Professional references and work samples.
Professional remodelers are more likely to belong to trade associations (such as the National Association of Home Builders) where they benefit from education programs, acquiring knowledge and skills to better run a business and improve their home remodeling services. A remodeler in good standing can also provide references from past clients. They also can show examples of previous remodeling projects to give you a feel of the quality and style of their work.

Make the smartest investment in your home by hiring a professional remodeler. They’ll help you stay on budget, solve remodeling challenges, and provide a higher-quality service.

For more tips on planning a home remodel or hiring a professional remodeler, visit http://www.nahb.org/remodel or contact the Professional Remodelers Organization (PRO) at 503-684-1880.