This past month, citizens of Baton Rouge and surrounding area were devastated by the greatest flood that citizens in the area have seen in its history. Many residents lost their homes, cars, family members, friends, and personal belongings in the flood. To many of the residents, the biggest questions are how do we overcome this obstacle? Where do we start first with renovating our house? What if I did not have flood insurance and the FEMA grant isn’t enough to repair the damages in my home? Many of these questions may be hard to answer, but I am sure that I can provide advice on how you can use cost effective ways to renovate your home after a flood.
1. Find Local Licensed and Insured contractors to help you get through the progress of renovating your home. There are many experienced businesses in the area, but in order to avoid any scams look for prominent companies in the area that may have great reviews or referrals from family and friends. You can actually save money by knowing the contractors and avoiding the price gouging. For example, I did an estimate recently and my customer told me he had decided to use my company because we were local, a small business, and honest. He received an estimate from a company in New Orleans, but they charged him $8,000 more than what we charged. He thought my prices were too low so he figured that we had bad reviews or no license. After he did his research, he realized that it was the opposite because we had great reviews and license. After researching our company, he decided to give the other company a call to ask for the breakdown of the estimate. The company could not provide a breakdown, so instead the manger of the company decreased the initial estimate about $6,000 dollars. The purpose of this example is to inform you that price gouging exist doing this time and in order for you to save money, go through companies that are local and trustworthy.
2. Research companies by looking through social media sites, home improvement sites (Angie’s List, Home Advisor, Thumbtack, Yelp nd etc.), and Louisiana State Licensing Board for Contractors. It is very important to know who you will be doing business with.
3. After removing the sheetrock, find a company that are professional and have experience when it comes to mold remediation. Please do not install new sheetrock without using the correct chemicals that will kill the mold and also be sure to let everything air out for the appropriate time needed. If you do not follow the right steps to this process, this could actually cause you to lose money because there is a great possibility that mold can grow back and you will have to spend more money than expected.
4. When its time to paint, be sure to ask your contractor questions about the paint. Know the type of paint he/she will be using. Ask if the paint comes with any warranties. It may be important to know if you should use an oil based primer on your baseboards before applying the top coat. Oil based is important because it will prevent any stains from appearing after the application. With the baseboards being damaged, the oil based paint will serve as a stain blocker. BE SURE TO ASK THE RIGHT QUESTIONS AND KNOW WHAT YOU ARE PAYING FOR.