RE/MAX 440
John F. O'Hara

John F. O'Hara
731 W Skippack Pike  Blue Bell  PA 19422
Phone:  610-277-4060
Office:  215-643-3200
Cell:  267-481-1786
Fax:  267-354-6973

My Blog

Hiring a Contractor? Do This First

March 23, 2018 2:12 am

Nothing is more exciting than embarking on a home renovation project! Hire the wrong contractor, however, and your dream remodel can quickly turn into a nightmare.

That’s why it’s essential to do your due diligence when hiring a contractor, such as getting multiple estimates before signing a contract. According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), when you get multiple bids, you can learn a great deal about the proposed project, such as what type of work is needed, the quality of the building materials, how long the job may take and the total cost.

The BBB offers these other tips to help find the best, most ethical contractor to work with and ensure a successful home renovation:

- First, check - BBB’s business profiles can tell you how long the contractor has been in business, as well as provide contact information, verified customer reviews, complaint details and how the business responded.

- Be wary of ‘today-only’ sales pitches - This is a sales tactic designed to get you to sign a contract or put down a deposit, without giving you the opportunity to do your research. Watch out for these and other ‘bargains’ that rush you into a deal.

- Get references from recent customers - Speak with other property owners who had work done recently, and ask what they did or did not like about a particular contractor. A reputable contractor will be happy to provide client references.

- Get everything in writing - Make sure all verbal promises end up in the written contract as well as a detailed description of the work, the cost of materials and start and completion dates. Contracts also should include specifics about the deposit and payment schedule and guarantees for the quality of work and materials.

- The contract should specify required permits - Renovation work often requires permits from the town or municipality. If you’re contractor suggests going without permits, it might be a sign they have a poor reputation at city hall.

- Compare apples to apples – Choosing a prospective contractor is simpler if you ask for quotes based on the number of hours needed and the same quality of materials.

- Avoid putting down a large deposit - A typical payment schedule should follow the “rule of thirds.” The first payment is given when signing the contract and helps pay for materials, the second payment when work begins, and the final payment when the job is finished and you are satisfied with the quality of work. Ask the builder to walk you through the work to explain what has been done.

By sticking to the above steps, you’ll head into your renovation with peace of mind, knowing you’ve done your homework and taken the necessary steps to select the best possible contractor.

Published with permission from RISMedia.


Home Safety Tips to Protect Tots

March 23, 2018 2:12 am

When your child first finds their legs, the home can become a playground - and sometimes, it can become a hazardous one.

The Up and Away campaign urges families to follow these five tips to keep their children safe and healthy:

Clean surfaces. Disinfect surfaces and objects that are touched often, like countertops, doorknobs, keyboards, faucet handles, phones and toys.

Store safely. When you're done cleaning and reorganizing, store everything you wouldn't want your kids to get into, like cleaning products and medicines, in a safe spot up and away and out of sight and reach of young children. Remember to put medicines back in their safe place after you use them every time.

Dispose safely. Dispose of any expired, unused, or unwanted medicines in your home. Make sure to follow recommendations for safe disposal to prevent exposures to medications that have been discarded. Consider bringing expired or unwanted medications to medicine take-back programs.

Be prepared. Check your first aid kit for expired medicines and supplies; medicines that are past their expiration dates may not work as well as they should. Make sure your first aid kit is stored in a location that is accessible to adults, but not to your young children.

Update your contacts. Make sure you have the Poison Help number stored in your cell phone and available to your children's caregivers: 800-222-1222.


Published with permission from RISMedia.