What They Don't Tell You When Building Your Space
You finally have the savings/loan to build your own home. You get your interior designer, your architect to make your dreams come alive. Your designer and architects are a dream to work with, and you finally have all the working drawings and designs needed to have a contractor build it. Since you're money-savvy, you get several contractors to bid. Now comes the hard part. Who will you choose? Shall it be the lowest price? After all, you do want to get your designer chairs! Or maybe that might not be a good idea.
The ugly truth is the most difficult part in building a space, whether it's your home or a commercial space, is the construction itself. Yes, there are lots of horror stories from contractors who use materials that aren't up to the specifications indicated, to those who actually don't finish the project and just leave you hanging with an unfinished space! I've had my own share of nightmares. It's part of the job most unfortunately. However, they don't really talk about this until you experience it yourself or maybe a friend/relative has told you. So what do you do?
Here are some guidelines in choosing your contractor/supplier (they apply to suppliers too-from building to furniture suppliers):
1. Reputation is king.
The most important thing is to find out their reputation. Google! Yes, most suppliers are already on the web. Although admittedly, plenty of contractors here in the Philippines aren't. So what do you do? Ask for referrals from your friends. Find out their experience. For contractors, check out their work. Ask them if you can visit a place they built. From there, you can see the quality of their work. If you're not sure, bring your designer with you.
2. Trust your designer.
Chances are your designer has had his/her experience with suppliers and contractors. I, for one, actually experiment on my home when using new suppliers. At the very least, if they screw up, it's on my turf. While I admit, not all passed my standards though. And yes, that is the very reason why your designer has only a limited pool of suppliers!
3. Price isn't everything.
Yes, I know. It's not how cheap it is nor how expensive. As I said previously, the best is always to go for reputation and referrals. While this may not be a foolproof solution, it's a better one and may save you a lot of headaches.
4. Trust your gut.
Truth. I screen my clients. I don't just jump at every opportunity when there is a possible project. Why is that? Because normally, I work a minimum of 2 months and longer to build a space (from design all the way to construction), having a good working relationship with my client is important. In the same way, trust your gut. Meet your prospective contractor/supplier in person. You'll find out if you can work with him/her even with your first interaction. Of course, this isn't always a guarantee especially if you're not that good in reading people. However, it will avoid any unwanted suppliers/contractors, yes, and even interior designers/architects.
While I urge your to be cautious, I do hope you enjoy the process as well! While there are nightmarish stories, there are successful ones too.
For interior design services, contact me.
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