You are prepared as possible for home ownership and, specifically, for these little repairs that are part of home ownership? We gathered some costs and tips for the top most common home repairs to give people a benchmark for how much you’ll pay to bring in a professional. So, to your list and I am sure toilet fill valves are somewhere on this… or a plumber.
When you hear the water continuously filling and draining from your toilet tank, it’s often because a leaky fill valve and with labor and materials, you are looking at between about sixty and two hundred and twenty-five dollars in terms of repair, depending on your area. The job takes about two hours, which is often the minimum some plumbers require just to take a job. And also, speaking of leaks, another repair you’re sure to encounter at some point is a leaky faucet.
Yes, that drip-drip-dripping is annoying, but the main thing is it can increase your water bill.
Exactly. It’s not something to let go. And depending on the faucet, you might need to simply replace the rubber washers, the old ring, a faucet cartridge. With labor and materials, you are looking at roughly ninety seven to about three hundred and thirty dollars. So again, probably because of the minimum time that it would take the plumber to come.
By the way, if you do replace a bathroom faucet or fixture, just a little tip: look for products with a Water Sense label, it’s an EPA certification that means the product meets certain set of water conserving criteria, which is usually twenty percent water savings over a product that just meets code. And there are Water Sense certified shower heads, toilets, and bathroom sink faucets.
What else is on the list?
How about replacing a ceiling fan?
Yes. Sooner or later the motor will burn out, the blades will wear out, or your fan just kind of looks outdated and a lot of people walk in houses they’re looking to buy and they look at the ceiling fan and it just looks so thirty-forty years ago and you need t replace it.
Exactly. Replacing it isn’t a really big deal, because it comes with upgraded wiring and reinforced ceiling box, a light switch for ceiling fans controls. So, usually, all that stuff is in place with the unit.
What you are paying for is the electrician’s time, which is probably one or two hours and the new fixture. So, total labor and materials could be a hundred to twelve hundred dollars, depending on how fancy your fixture is.
And I wanted to share a little tip, it’s really a myth I’d like to bust for people, because I think a lot of people tend to leave their ceiling fan on all the time, they leave a room and they never turn it off and it’s actually counter-productive to do that, because they don’t cool rooms, they cool people. So, you are actually wasting energy if no one is in the room to feel the breeze.
Interesting. Also, people do it because, you know, for the cat.
Exactly. There’s nothing wrong with that, I totally support that.
They are. Because, at the very least, you are going to need to have your gutters cleaned every year. But, common problems, that they pull away from the house, or they pitch at inefficient angles because of the weight of snow or soggy leaves.
So, chances are you are going to need to call in a gutter contractor who will clean the gutters, replace or reinstall the supporting hardware and hangers and if they’re going restore the correct pitch, the contractor has to detach and reattach each gutter section. So, total cost for labor and materials could be anywhere from a hundred and forty to three hundred dollars, possibly even more. How about another common thing is a faulty light switch?
Yes, that is common. You turn on the light, nothing happens or there are sparks when the light turns on.
Yes, and it’s an easy fix for an electrician. They’ll turn off the power, they’ll take off the face plate, maybe they’ll tighten the wires or replace the switch, it should take less than an hour. Labor materials usually run about forty to a hundred and five dollars.
Really get a pro for these thing, if you don’t know your way around electricity, this is not something you want to mess with as DIY-er.
I totally agree. And one more problem that many new home owners encounter and that’s a out of alignment door.
Exactly. It’s not necessarily a sign of something really bad, although it could be a sign of a more serious foundation problem.
So, door frame shift and that causes the hinges to creek and the doors to not shut properly. So, a handy man would add wood shims to frames and hinges to align the door so they open and close easily. He might also replace worn out screws with longer screws, which helps secure the hinges tightly. This probably it’s a fix he can do in about an hour and labor and materials are anywhere from thirty-five to more than three hundred and fifty dollars.
Every once in a while we really enjoy sharing more than just information about garages… If you enjoyed this article, you can find more like it by tuning in to the weekly podcast at www.HouseLogic.com/radio
Contractors- they can be life savers, miracle workers, or they can be just a total dud. I’ve had my share of total duds. What was I doing wrong, how do I find a good contractor?
It can be a challenge to find a good contractor, whether you’re talking specifically about garage door repairs or any other aspect of home repair or remodeling, especially this time of year when a lot of folks are fixing up their homes. And, of course, the very best place to start is to talk with your friends and neighbors who had some work done recently. People love to brag when they’ve done something well and they usually aren’t shy about complaining when someone is done bad work.
Another good idea is to talk to people who work at your local hardware store or lumber store. Local business people who serve the construction industry, they know who pays the bills regularly, who gets jobs done on time and who has the best reputation. You should also cross references referrals if you can.
And how do I do that?
For starters, check them for complains with the Better Business Bureau, but you don’t have to jump to conclusions if there are complaints, just see if the dispute has been resolved.
And number two, check the worker’s references. Ask the contractor to let you see some of his other jobs and if you can, talk to those homeowners.
And third, check the person out on online reviews sites. One really important note of caution: don’t rely just on one review site, consult several.
All right. I know this is an on-going debate. I should not always trust online reviews.
No, overall you can totally trust them, you just want to apply a little common sense and scrutiny because some companies might plant reviews to increase their rankings. For instance, we’ve heard about some reviews that have been written anonymously by a company’s employees, some reviews might have been paid for, companies hire people to write glowing reviews, or a rival company might write a negative review about a contractor.
That sounds like a total mess. So, how do you I know what’s real?
It’s not hard. It’s just a matter of applying a little judgment and leg work. So, check reviews over a person under few sites. Like I said, just don’t rely on one.
And when you see extreme reviews, like “Don’t let this guy step foot on your property!” or “It’s the best experience of my life”, take it with a grain of salt. Balance positive and negative reviews.
If you find a negative comment about a contractor you are interested in, check to see if he resolved it.
First, you want to get itemized bids from three contractors, so that you get a good number of bids to compare and itemizing it’s important so you can see where the costs are assigned. So if you need to trim, you can find specific that you might be able to do without.
Some things that your contract should include is that the contractor will get all the permits and the approvals, that it names the start and end dates for the projects and a payment schedule.
And just as a tip: be sure to specify fifteen to thirty percent for the final payment, so you’re holding something back and that final payment should be made only if the work it totally completed and you were able to verify that the subcontractors have been paid.
Speaking of subcontractors, before you hire out , ask who will be in charge of the job site and meet the foreman.
Okay. So, say I’ve signed a deal with a contractor and he’s hired a team, what happens if the crew then is not reliable or they show up late or maybe sometimes not at all?
If you need to throw a hissy fit, because it is tempting to do so, do it privately, then take a deep breath and if the problem is chronic, document your grievances, know the days and times that the crew failed to show and for how long, make note of delayed deliveries of materials, appliances and then take photos of any shoddy work or inferior materials.
And talk to your contractor away from the crew. If that doesn’t work, then you need to consider other options like firing them, getting an attorney, or going to small claims court. Usually, it doesn’t come to that.
You can hear more great tips and info like this by visiting www.HomeLogic.com/radio
Discount Garage Door Company is pleased to announce that we now have a new website! Our hope is to be better able to both reach you, (both present and future customers), as well as for you to more easily know us and reach us.
Our focus and specialty is garage doors and everything involved with them. Web sites and social media aren’t really our strong suit… And just like we recommend having someone knowledgeable help you when you have problems with your garage, when it comes to website design… it was time for us to call in some help!
You’re looking at the result, and our sincere hope is that you find it helpful, informative, and reassuring as to who Discount Garage Door is as a company and as local Tucson residents. We’re here to serve our community and welcome any questions or feedback you may have for us. Not only regarding the new website, but anything to do with garage doors, openers, or installations.
We look forward to hearing from you!