The Basement Finishing Budget Buster

One of the most common problems you’ll face in completing a basement finishing project is cost overruns. A good budget is completely worthless if you bust it during the project!

There are myriad methods and techniques to controlling a budget, but the simplest and most effective way is to insure your basement finishing contractor gives you a ‘hard bid.’

If you’ve not heard of this before, a hard bid is a fixed price for the job that won’t change regardless of what happens during your basement finishing project. It is the alternative to a “Time & Material” bid where your contractor charges you for his exact time, regardless of whether it is more or less than bid, or a “Cost-Plus” bid, where you pay the actual costs plus a builder margin. Both types are a potential pitfall to your budget!

The advantage of the hard bid is that risks inherent to the process of basement finishing rest with the contractor and not with you (e.g. when the building department inspecting your project requires more ventilation before they will sign off – your contractor pays for the in-line vent fan – not you).

Your Basement Finishing Project — and Not a Penny More Than Expected!

Why should the contractor bear the risk? As a building professional, your contractor should understand the scope of the project and the potential risk involved better than someone who is not involved with basement finishing on a daily basis.

The benefit to you is that you know your cost upfront and can rest assured you won’t receive any surprise bills. Before you start your basement finishing project, make sure you tell your contractor you’ll need a hard bid and you won’t settle for anything else. Agree in writing that overruns are not your responsibility, and enjoy your basement finishing project with the knowledge that your budget is safe and sound.

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