11 months ago

Holliston February 2018

Holliston February 2018

Page 12

Page 12 Holliston Local Town Pages February 2018 Top 5 Mistakes Homeowners Make When Hiring a Designer or Contractor Budget There are two main areas to focus on when it comes to budget. If you are hiring a contractor or design build firm directly, be sure to be open and honest about budget starting with the first phone call. The budget shouldn’t be a closely guarded secret. Ideally, the budget should be included in every conversation. This will ensure all parties are on the same page and save a lot of time and frustration. The second item pertaining to budget is if you decide to go the route of design-bid-build. This older method consists of hiring an architect or interior designer first, then obtaining quotes from contractors later. At least once a week I meet with a potential client who has a design and specifications provided by an independent architect, interior designer, or kitchen designer. This may be for a project as simple as a bathroom update to a full addition and kitchen. As soon as we start discussing budget, you can feel the air leave the room. Most of the time, the initial starting budget for the project is MUCH higher than anything discussed with the designer or architect, if budget was discussed at all. Whether you are working directly with a design build firm or managing the design process yourself, make sure all parties agree on the budget range for the project before you sign the contract. Contract and Pricing Once you’ve established a general project concept and scope, make sure everything is included in your agreement. Read the entire agreement and all the fine print. I’m amazed by how many people hire companies and then complain about the process even though the entire process was described in detail in writing. A well written contract, read and understood by the client will protect both the client and the designer or contractor and ensure good communication moving forward. When it comes to the price of the work, this is where budget, contract, and actual price are a critical triumvirate. Make sure you understand the expected price range of design service and/or construction. When it comes to construction estimates verses quotes, make sure you ask your contractor whether they Have you made your annual contribution? Retirement generally require a lot of change orders (PRICE INCREASES AFTER CONTRACT!) during the work. It’s sad to say, but there are a lot of unscrupulous companies who will deliberately underprice a job knowing that once the work starts they have you over a barrel. At that point, what choice do you have but to sign any change orders to ensure the work flow continues? I highly recommend you check out and read about Home Improvement Contractor requirements and required contract terms before you hire anyone to work on your home. Due diligence on your part will ensure you hire an experienced, qualified, and honest firm for your design or design build needs. Scheduling Scheduling expectations should also be discussed with the very first phone call. Living through a construction project at your home can be very stressful, especially if children are in the mix. Careful planning is required to ensure that the work is scheduled at a time that works best for you. In some cases, you may There is still time to make your IRA contribution for 2017! IRA contributions for 2017 must be made by April 17 th , 2018. If you have questions regarding your contribution contact Sheri, financial consultant at Milford Federal Investment Services. Call her today at 508.381.5212 or email her at Sheri Delisle Financial Consultant even need to move out. Plan any home improvement projects 6 to 12 months in advance whenever possible. This will provide ample time for project development including land surveys, code compliance research, design, specifications, and permitting. With all the popular TV shows about home remodeling, many homeowners don’t have a realistic expectation on how long a job will take. In addition, they may look at a project such as a bathroom remodel and not only undervalue the project, but think it will only take 2 or 3 weeks just because it is a small room. Be sure to have frank conversations with your contractor about how long project development will take, what a realistic start date range is, and how long construction will take. Knowing how long a project will take to develop and how long construction will take will help you reduce “construction fatigue.” This happens on almost every job where after a couple of months you just want everyone out of your home. Just remember, be fair with your contractor, especially if the job is on schedule. Doug Masters Don’t micro-manage! Whether it is during the design phase or during construction, remember that you’ve hired professionals, and let them do their jobs. We have clients who literally stay home and watch our crews work all day. Others are perpetually “glass is half empty” types, who are looking for problems and seem to enjoy confrontation. You know the type, when they are out to eat they send the plate back three times because “they know best” how to prepare that meal! Well, you can imagine how it is doing business with these folks. It’s important to understand that no matter how great the team you are working with is, mistakes may happen. In addition, mishaps might be out of their control. Perhaps a part came in defective and workflow must stop until the replacement part arrives. Don’t take that out on the team working in your home. Respect and appreciate that the people working in your home are doing the best job they can for you. Let them manage the workflow and solve problems on your behalf. Clients who micromanage tend to slow down the entire process from design to construction, and often cause stress for themselves and the team. Relationship Any smart business owner wants to partner with great clients and keep them as customers for a lifetime. The same goes for a savvy homeowner. Do you really want to vet out a new company every time you are planning a project? Think long term and remember that saving a few bucks is not nearly as important as having a working relationship with a team you can trust. Would you rather be the nightmare customer who the designer or contractor want to avoid at all costs, or the one getting a post project gift and a yearly holiday card because you’ve truly been a joy to work with. Doug Masters is the owner of Masters Touch Design Build, located at 24 Water St., Holliston. For more information contact (508) 359-5900, e-mail info@ or visit Investment and insurance products and services are offered through INFINEX INVESTMENTS, INC. Member FINRA/SIPC. Milford Federal Investment Services is a trade name of Milford Federal Savings and Loan Association. Infinex and the bank are not affiliated. Products and services made available through Infinex are: Not Guaranteed by the Bank Not FDIC Insured Not a Deposit Not Insured by Any Federal Government Agency May Lose Value Including Loss of Principal Our Ad & Editorial Deadline is the 15th of each month, for the following month’s issue.

February 2018 Holliston Local Town Pages Page 13 Mass Audubon Stony Brook Announces Its February Programming Tiny Trekkers: Saturday, February 3 and 17, from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Start your weekend off right with a fun and knowledgeable Stony Brook teacher on the trails learning about nature. Each day will have a special topic created to excite your child about the natural world. There will be crafts, activities and lots of laughter. So come and join the fun. This month’s themes: Trees in Winter/ Winter Wonderland. Ages 2.9 to 6 with a parent. Fee: $5m/$6nm per person per session Brunch with the Eagles: Sunday, February 4, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Bald eagles can be found flying over open water in search of food during the winter months. One of the best places to find them is along the Connecticut New England Inc. Ballistic Services Instant cash paid for your valuable firearms. Call today for a confidential consultation 508-381-0230 • River. See spectacular views of the eagles as they perch on trees along the river. Then enjoy a leisurely and delicious brunch at the famous Griswold Inn in Essex, CT. A great winter escape for a day! Fee: $99m/$119nm Family Tracking: Saturday, February 10, from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. There are hints of life everywhere in the winter. Become an expert tracker and enjoy a morning of winter exploration in search of animal tracks and signs of deer, coyote, fox, fisher, otter, mink, rabbit, and mice. A great family adventure! Fee: $7adult/$6childm/ $9adult/$7childnm per person Eats for the Tweets: Sunday, February 11, from 2 to 4 p.m. Let’s make valentines for the birds! We will make edible treats with seeds, dried fruits, popcorn and other delicious items. You can either bring your treat home or hang it at Stony Brook. We will end the program with a short walk to look for birds of all kinds on the Sanctuary grounds. Fee: $8m/ $10nm per person Presidents’ Day Birding: Monday, February 19, from 7 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. For the 4th consecutive year, this trip to 3 Presidential areas is offered to provide good looks at mid-winter waterfowl, raptors and songbirds. Ron Saponaro Visit George Washington State Forest, Lincoln Woods State Park, and Adams Farm. Don’t let the weather get you down. This is a day-trip you will love! Fee: $60m/$72nm Ring of Fire during February Vacation Week: Tuesday- Friday, February 20 to 23, 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. A horseshoe-shaped zone of frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions encircles the basin of the Pacific Ocean. Join us at Stony Brook as we “travel” to exotic locations and explore the lands that lie around the Ring of Fire. Sign up for one day or all four! Each day will explore a different location. Fee: Thank you for voting us #1 DENTIST in 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016 $55m/$60nm per day. Who Is That in the Moon? Friday, February 23, from 6 to 8 p.m. Almost everyone sees it during our evening travels, but have you ever really taken a careful look at the Moon? Join us as we pull out our telescopes and binoculars to take a careful look at the moonscape. It is a fascinating scene that will intrigue every lover of maps, geography and history. You may never look at the moon in the same way again. Fee: $8m/ $11nm per person Build a Backyard Bird House: Saturday, February 24, from 2 to 4 p.m. February is a perfect time to help our local birds by building them a place to live. We will talk about what birds are looking for in a place to live and then assemble a bird house to take home. Bird house building materials will be supplied. After you build your birdhouse you can take it home and paint it with plenty of time to find that perfect spot in your garden to put it up. All children must be accompanied by an adult. Fee: $35m/ $39nm per person Join Bonnie Dittrich’s gentle yoga class! Most Tuesday evenings in our Program Room. It’s calming, centering, stimulating and very affordable with a $10 donation per session. Come one day or as many as you like. No commitment necessary. Call to confirm class and time. Pre-registration is required for all programs (except as noted). For more details, visit the Mass Audubon webpage at www. or contact us at (508) 528-3140. Register by phone, email (stonybrook@, fax (508-553- 3864) or in person. Stony Brook is located at 108 North Street in Norfolk. Family & Cosmetic Dentistry Relaxed, Friendly Atmosphere Cleanings & Exams Children Welcome Root Canals • Perodontal Care Crowns & Bridges • Dentures 635 Waverly Street, Rte 135 Framingham, MA 01702 Tel: 508-872-2266 Fax: 508-872-2011 Email: John C. Park, DMD Accepting New Patients 508-435-5455 Visit us at 77 West Main Street, Suite 210, Hopkinton (Near 495, in plaza with Bank of America) Additional location in Hopedale •

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