3:47 PM 04/14/2012
I'd love some feedback on how people have handled conflicting feedback from professionals as to how much a house renovation will cost and what the budget should be. We want to add a landing and staircase to our second floor going to our garden and add a kitchen where the new door is and open up (not remove) a wall between the tiny kitchen and larger dining room space. I've gotten estimates all over the map but have heard from a couple of potential people (architects, not contractors, one of whom caps fees at...a percentage of construction) that it will cost $100,000 to do the kitchen and deck. (We want to do this legally - DOB filing and approval etc) That sounds insane to me - I thought perhaps a gut reno could cost that or more but not adding a kitchen and getting backyard access (which is in effect what we want to do). I'd love some perspective on this because we can't pay that and still need to make where we live work. Any ideas about this? I'm having a hard time taking the next step (hiring an architect) given all the conflicting advice! Help!
Thanks for any feedback...
With all due respect to the architects, they don't do the construction work and I've never met an architect who did an estimate that was even close. Only contractors can tell you what they would charge. But it isnt necessarily the architect's fault: you need to be very specific on what kind of finishes you want, especially the kitchen. $100,000 for a custom kitchen isn't that unusual. But if an Ikea kitchen is what you want, it will be a fraction of that. It all depends. Deconstruct the project and reach out to some kitchen cabinet, deck and brick people & appliance stores to get an idea of what each will cost. It will be more than you expect, but hopefully less than breaks the bank. Good luck.
4:50 PM 04/14/2012 | 0 Votes
Couldn't agree more with housepoor. You definitely need to speak to a contractor to get a good idea of the cost. Have the contractor give you an itemized estimate, this way you can compare the different contractors. But usually contractor will give you a discount if you have the job done in one big contract.
8:25 PM 04/14/2012 | 0 Votes
You are going to find that the contractors numbers are all over the place without drawings specifing what needs to be constructed. The numbers are all over the place as everyone has their own idea of what direction you are going in.
9:14 PM 04/14/2012 | 0 Votes
What's wrong with the architects? Pricing is integral part of planning and design!
You can't get reliable quotes from contractors without a plan.
And a good plan can only be made depending on the budget.
I mean it's part of their job.
I would not choose an architect that has an allergy to numbers (again).
And yes, it can be calculated, especially for such a tiny job.
Construction is no mystery. The mystery is just created for them to get a part of the cake.
9:25 PM 04/14/2012 | 0 Votes
I hired my Architect to do the drawings only (due to my budget) for my Brownstone Renovation. The Architect and I had several meetings where I explained thoroughly what I wanted. After drawings were done I handed copies of the drawings to potential GC's to estimate the job. The GC I eventually hired was the only team out there that gave me an itemized estimate which had a cost to every single part of the job (100% transparency) - that made my budgeting extremely easy. I handled the GC interaction through-out the process (keep in mind I had the time to do this as I am a consultant). The GC I hired was All Renovation Construction ( http://www.allrenovationllc.co...) - a great team to consider.
1:24 PM 04/15/2012 | 1 Votes
augistiner, i can show you multiple projects where the bids were all over the place. Hiring a guy with a pick up truck versus a company with an office and office staff vastly changes the overhead structure and therefore the bid. its not only the end product but also the management of the project your paying for, same thing with architect. also architects are required to know exactly what everything costs before its drawn?
1:30 PM 04/15/2012 | 0 Votes
Architects typically do not know costs because they do not handle the breakdown of construction costs in the way that a GC must. I use a transparent time and material formula which I share with my clients to justify my costs.
For your deck I suggest you contact Lopopolo Ironworks for a bid.
2:50 PM 04/15/2012 | 0 Votes
A good architect should be able to produce drawings that are within your construction budget, or be able to tell you that your plans cannot be executed based on the amount of money you're prepared to spend.
While a contractor can tell you if a kitchen job (as you describe it, and after walking though the space) is a 25k job or a 100k job, you can't rely on an estimate that isn't based on approved drawings.
While I understand and respect the ability of design/build firms, most residential owners are better suited with obtaining drawings and then bidding out the work based on the drawings.
10:09 PM 04/15/2012 | 0 Votes