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Old 05-24-2009, 08:46 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 67,016,830 times
Reputation: 22370

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Originally Posted by ClevelandMike View Post
Many medical & legal specialists are renovating their big homes today taking adavantage of builders, and home improvement companies at bid wars over jobs. The secondary mortgage rates are giving way to helping make these decisions happen quickly. There are many projects out there right now.
MIKE - is there any way the "little guy" like me can get hooked up w/ subcontractors who are willing to bid on a project? I don't get call backs. Do you have any advice? For ex., I need can lights put in - probably 12 or so - in kitchen and family room. I would buy the lights myself but want someone to make me a firm price and do the job. But the guys I call out of the phone book all want to do things by the hour, and I am not comfortable with that.

Anything you can suggest?
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Old 05-24-2009, 01:56 PM
 
Location: Moon Over Palmettos
5,975 posts, read 17,557,678 times
Reputation: 5005
Quote:
Originally Posted by DNaomi View Post
Ani, we did the whole thing DIY from scratch! Hubby bought wood and built a new mantle. Basically it's three wood "boxes," one for each side column and one flat for the mantle top, plus the front "face" board. Added trim boards, sanded, painted!

The old surround was brick and we just covered it up with mosaic tile. This was a pain in the a**, and our first tile job, and it's not perfect... but overall we're happy! So far haven't used it for fires, since the chimney may have damage, but we'll put some candles or something in it to be "decorative." If we find out we can use it without re-doing the chimney for 3K, then we'll get a screen.

Hm... let me see, maybe I can attach a pic.
I am VERY IMPRESSED! You obviously know what you're doing, have done the research and your style is just...well...very chic. You might put decorators out of business!
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Old 05-24-2009, 04:17 PM
 
Location: UK
22 posts, read 63,374 times
Reputation: 26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anifani821 View Post
MIKE - is there any way the "little guy" like me can get hooked up w/ subcontractors who are willing to bid on a project? I don't get call backs. Do you have any advice? For ex., I need can lights put in - probably 12 or so - in kitchen and family room. I would buy the lights myself but want someone to make me a firm price and do the job. But the guys I call out of the phone book all want to do things by the hour, and I am not comfortable with that.

Anything you can suggest?
Ani,

I am in the process of remodeling my bathroom and having some kitchen work done. I had great results using Contractors - Find Top Rated Home Remodeling Contractors & Local Service Professionals at BestContractors.com and Home Improvement | Home Repair | Home Remodeling. The two sites are similar, put in what you need done, express that you want a firm price, and they will call you back shortly. Using both sites I had call backs within the day.

Hope this helps.
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Old 05-24-2009, 07:12 PM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 67,016,830 times
Reputation: 22370
Quote:
Originally Posted by dthmarch View Post
Ani,

I am in the process of remodeling my bathroom and having some kitchen work done. I had great results using Contractors - Find Top Rated Home Remodeling Contractors & Local Service Professionals at BestContractors.com and Home Improvement | Home Repair | Home Remodeling. The two sites are similar, put in what you need done, express that you want a firm price, and they will call you back shortly. Using both sites I had call backs within the day.

Hope this helps.
Those are great resources! Thank you so much for sharing. I will check it out!

How are your renovations coming along? There are so many decisions to be made w/ bathrooms and kitchens. But what a difference upgrades can make!

Thanks again, March!
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:04 AM
 
37 posts, read 74,092 times
Reputation: 28
I'm at the tail end of remodeling my kitchen. I tore out a couple of walls and reconfigured the kitchen and laundry room. I converted the kitchen and my living room fireplace to gas. I'm certain I attributed to Lowes bottom line with my new appliances! I didn't do any of the work myself. I hired a general contractor. For all the money I spent I'll have to live here until i die to get my money back. I spent way more than I should. But I like it and since I am the one that has to live here thats what counts to me. I bought this house in August 2008 and I knew those awful green laminte counter tops had to go.

I also am installing a new deck and a hot tub later this week.
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:31 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 67,016,830 times
Reputation: 22370
Quote:
Originally Posted by lwh1961 View Post
I'm at the tail end of remodeling my kitchen. I tore out a couple of walls and reconfigured the kitchen and laundry room. I converted the kitchen and my living room fireplace to gas. I'm certain I attributed to Lowes bottom line with my new appliances! I didn't do any of the work myself. I hired a general contractor. For all the money I spent I'll have to live here until i die to get my money back. I spent way more than I should. But I like it and since I am the one that has to live here thats what counts to me. I bought this house in August 2008 and I knew those awful green laminte counter tops had to go.

I also am installing a new deck and a hot tub later this week.
It sounds like you have created a wonderful environment! That is the whole thing about renovating: Yes, it is always nice to know you will get a payback if you sell, but the main thing is - doing whatever it takes to make LIVING in your home a pleasure.

PS. Those green laminate counter tops . . . Some people can't see beyond that kind of thing; obviously, you saw it as a decorating opportunity!
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:48 AM
 
37 posts, read 74,092 times
Reputation: 28
PS. Those green laminate counter tops . . . Some people can't see beyond that kind of thing; obviously, you saw it as a decorating opportunity![/quote]


Those were the ugliest countertops I have ever seen. It was more of a demolition opportunity instead of a decorating opportunity..lol
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Old 05-25-2009, 08:59 AM
 
Location: State of Being
35,885 posts, read 67,016,830 times
Reputation: 22370
Quote:
Originally Posted by lwh1961 View Post
PS. Those green laminate counter tops . . . Some people can't see beyond that kind of thing; obviously, you saw it as a decorating opportunity!

Those were the ugliest countertops I have ever seen. It was more of a demolition opportunity instead of a decorating opportunity..lol[/quote]

Boy, do I know what you mean . . . and the "ugly" can take all forms. When I walked into this house, my eyes nearly bugged out w/ the color in the master bedroom!! The house was custom built, had gorgeous moulding throughout - even a central vac. But I walked upstairs and my eyeballs crossed up. So as not to offend anyone who might actually LIKE this color, I won't say much except that it was assaultive. No, like like bright orange, but more like - "hurt my eyes." It was not only a sickening color, it had been somehow "pearlized." So it was shiny in a strange, stomach churning way. It literally made me feel dizzy and disoriented. I thought - no WONDER this house has not sold! I bet others had wanted to flee from that room, too! All that took was some time to paint two coats . . . but I suspect that color in itself had turned away many potential buyers!
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Old 05-25-2009, 03:11 PM
 
1,367 posts, read 5,088,588 times
Reputation: 871
Quote:
Originally Posted by bibit612 View Post
I am VERY IMPRESSED! You obviously know what you're doing, have done the research and your style is just...well...very chic. You might put decorators out of business!
Thanks!!! It's always nice to hear praise, it's hard to appreciate things I've worked on myself (since I know all the flaws whether or not they're noticable), so it sure is motivating to hear people say they like what we've done!

It's great to read about everyone else's projects too! Nice to know were not the only ones and to get inspirations from everyone's ideas and style!

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Old 05-25-2009, 04:30 PM
 
Location: Union County, NC
2,115 posts, read 6,440,708 times
Reputation: 1129
I'm blown away by the work you guys have done on your own -

Pictures shared here are fabulous.

My DH struggles with hanging curtains. I am actually the more handy of the two but I've never taken on any large scale projects!

Thanks for the lovely peek into your lives.
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