Planning – The key to success

The level of success in everything we do can often be measured by the extent of our planning.

For example, when buying a car we begin the planning by first thinking about what we want. In broad terms, this can be broken down into three key areas: specification, age and price.

Specification might include power/speed, safety, size, technology and style. Age would encompass the reliability and risk of breakdown, together with a guarantee which might cancel out this risk. Finally, Price; can the desired specification and age characteristics be achieved within budget? If not, then a compromise of the three key areas needs to be reached.

So, what decision making process do you go through when tackling your home improvements? Whether it’s simple painting and decorating, a new kitchen, bathroom or a full property renovation, adopting a planned approach will pay dividends in the future.

Be sure to discuss the specification that your building contractor is offering, in detail:

▪ Power/speed – do they have the capacity and capability to carry out the specified works and within the timeframe stated?
▪ Safety – does the contractor take due care and attention to do the job properly and safely?
▪ Size – dimensions can be critical, are they clearly stated?
▪ Technology – e.g., a new kitchen, has the contractor specified the make/model of appliances being fitted? Or, is there an allowance for your own choice?
▪ Style – e.g., have you been given the option of choosing your own bathroom tiles? Is this clearly stated in the detailed quotation?

Following this, consideration should be given to age/experience, reliability, guarantees and price.

Make yourself comfortable with your contractor’s reliability, check out references/testimonials and be sure that all workmanship is guaranteed. Most reputable building contractors will have a web presence. Put their name into Google and find out more about them, and the way they operate.

A rational approach is also important. If one builder has submitted a quotation on one sheet of A4, it’s unlikely that they will deliver the same quality and specification as another builder who provides four pages of detail, together with assurances and guarantees.

By Brett Hawkins
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Brett Hawkins is the managing director of GMT 24:7, a local expert in all areas of general building and property maintenance, with offices in Lagos and Almancil. |
The key to success with any home improvement project is in the planning stage. Typically, the cheapest quotation will not deliver the required result. Thorough planning will ensure you do achieve your desired outcome.