Doug King, certified remodeler and president-elect of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry, cautions against homeowners pulling a permit because it then places the responsibility for everything relating to the remodeling project squarely on their shoulders.
“It’s better to pass that responsibility off to the contractor,” notes King, owner of King Contracting Inc. in St. Petersburg, Florida. An award-winning contractor and remodeler, King likes to tell clients that when it comes to their home renovation projects, he is coach, marriage counselor and air-traffic controller all rolled into one.
“Contractors can manage the day-to-day operations and keep all the moving parts organized,” he says.
In addition to jobs that require permits, homeowners should call in the professionals for projects involving floor or roof plan changes; additional living space beyond the existing foundation/roof; and electrical, plumbing and mechanical/ HVAC systems.
“Structural changes should only be handled by professionals,” advises master certified remodeler Dennis Gehman, owner and founder of Harleysville, Pennsylvania-based Gehman Design Remodeling and treasurer of the remodeling industry group.
Before picking up a sledgehammer, intrepid do-it-yourselfers should ask these questions:
- Can I tackle this project myself?
- Do I have the tools?