Our FAQs

Why is it important to select a licensed general contractor for my remodeling project?

Are all “licensed” contractors considered general contractors?

What exactly does the term design/build mean?

What are the advantages of a design/build remodeling company?

Will my project require a building permit?

Is there an average price-per-square-foot for a room addition or other remodeling projects?

What is the best way to determine my remodeling budget?

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Why is it important to select a licensed general contractor for my remodeling project?

A general contractor is a licensed professional who serves as a single point of contact and manages all aspects of your remodeling project.  This includes securing building permits, scheduling inspections, ordering building materials, and scheduling and supervising all trades required to complete your project.  The general contractor assumes full responsibility for the integrity of workmanship at all stages to ensure your project satisfies all state and local building codes in all phases.

Tip:  Unlicensed contractors may expose you to significant financial risk and possible harm in the event of personal injury or property damage, as few carry bonding or workers’ compensation insurance.

 

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Are all licensed contractors considered general contractors?

No.  Currently, there are over 40 different types of contractor licenses issued in the state of California. These fall into two broad categories: general building and specialty contractors.  A general building contractor is “a contractor whose principal business is in connection with any structure built, being built, or to be built, requiring in its construction the use of at least two unrelated building trades or crafts (e.g. plumbing, electrical, drywall, etc. ).”  Room additions and most kitchen and master bath remodels are best handled by a licensed general contractor, as these projects typically encompass demolition, framing, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, etc. might want to define specialty contractor briefly since it is mentioned earlier.

 

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What exactly does the term design/build mean?

Basically, the term design/build means that one company is responsible for your home remodeling project, from the design concept all the way through construction and final completion of the project.

 

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What are the advantages of a design/build remodeling company?

From a homeowner perspective, a design/build general contractor provides you, the client, a single source of responsibility, authority and cost control for your remodeling project, from start to finish.

With the traditional design/bid/build process, each critical phase typically involves different responsible and vested parties.  This approach could lead you, as a homeowner, to:

  1. pay for a design which cannot realistically be built within your overall budget;
  2. deal with multiple and often mutually exclusive parties to resolve discrepancies between the design and the plan/build specifications; and/or
  3. be subject to schedule delays and/or cost overruns if issues cannot be resolved quickly between all vested parties.

 

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Will my project require a permit?

As a general rule, a building permit is required whenever:

  1. there is structural work involved (e.g., removing load-bearing walls).
  2. the basic living area (square footage) of the home is to be changed.
  3. the home’s mechanical systems (e.g., gas, electrical or plumbing) are to be reconfigured or otherwise modified.

As a rule, you should always request that your licensed general contractor obtain the building permits. This is because the person who “pulls the permit” is considered liable for ensuring that all completed work complies with the state and local building codes.

TIP:  Be wary of “contractors” who say they can save you money by not pulling permits for a room addition, kitchen or bath remodeling project.

 

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Is there an average price-per-square-foot for a room addition or other remodel?

Many variables must be considered when remodeling or adding a room to an existing home to arrive at an “average” square-foot price. These include:

  • the home’s current engineering/structural aspects along, with the potential impact of any proposed changes
  • the age of the home (many older homes do not meet current building code requirements) and what is required to bring the home into current code requirements
  • location and condition of existing plumbing and electrical wiring, and how any additions will impact the system’s overall integrity
  • required changes to the roof line
  • zoning requirements and setbacks currently enforced
  • types of finished materials and hardware to be included
  • interior surface choices (Corian, granite, natural stone or tile?)
  • plumbing and light fixtures (spa shower or hot tub, recessed lighting?)

 

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What is the best way to determine my remodeling budget?

The most reliable method is to get a precise bid based on a set of plans and product specifications. Obviously, this is not practical during the initial planning stages of a remodeling project.

Dream Design Builders is happy to provide you with a “ballpark” budget range based on a preliminary, no-obligation consultation. This meeting allows us to learn first-hand about what you ideally want to accomplish with your home remodel along with your top priorities.  In turn, we can offer valuable information to help you make key decisions and continue to move forward toward your goals.

TIP:  Be wary of “contractors” who state they can give you a firm bid for labor and materials without a set of plans and specifications

 

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Dream Design Builders
11411 W. Bernardo Court
San Diego, CA 92127
Phone: 1.877.373.2677
Email: support@dreamdesignbuilders.com
Web: DreamDesignBuilders.com