Contractor Horror Story of The Week: Unqualified Contractor Causes Hazmat Danger

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt: Our story this week comes from our good friend who works for a major Gas company. He tells the following story: “A customer had a gas meter and regulator inside her home and wanted it moved so she had more space in her basement. She hired a contractor (should have contacted the gas company) to move it. He removed the really old regulator (really old regulators had 1 fluid ounce of mercury inside) and gas meter then re-piped it so the customer had the space she wanted. The contractor spilled mercury in her basement. Diagram of a typical inside…

RunningMan Community Clubhouse Home Show April 28, 2012

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt:   Ever have a question… but not the time to ask?   Your local York County Professionals are hosting: “Have some coffee- Ask a question” so that you can get your questions answered with no appointment, no obligation and no waiting. When: Saturday April 28th Where: Running Man Clubhouse Time: 10:00am – 2:00pm What is this all about? Spring is here!  Many of our friends and neighbors have questions about their homes but a) They don’t have the time to ask a professional b) They don’t want the hassle of making an appointment c) They don’t want a sales pitch, they just would like a question answered! So we decided to come out…

Case Study: Home Remodel & Lessons Learned

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt: A friend of mine recently completed a home remodel in upstate New York.  I was fascinated to hear about the adventure that led to the beautiful transformation of her home!  I couldn’t help but think to myself that her experience was so much like those of our customers at Jim Hicks Home Improvements here in Virginia.  I’m sure a potential client in Yorktown who is thinking about remodeling their home, or someone in Virginia Beach who would like a new bathroom, or maybe a homeowner I recently met with in Newport News who is dreaming of a new kitchen remodel, would…

What affects the cost of a re-roof project?

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt: When it comes to replacing the roof on your home, there are many decisions to be made.  Most of the decisions turn on the answer to the question: “what are my goals for this property?” Do you intend to keep the property for many years?  Will this roof be an investment into the property that you intend for it to appreciate with the property? Do you intend to sell the property?  Is replacing this roof merely a necessary evil that you can no longer avoid, but you’re motivated to replace at the lowest possible cost?  Are you an investor trying to flip…

“Thanks for not being condescending”

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt: The first time one of my female clients thanked me for not “talking down” to her when I was providing her with an estimate for a roof replacement, I was a bit taken aback. I come from a long line of brilliant women. My mother is an executive with the National Air & Space Museum in Washington DC. My Great Aunt was the Head Librarian for the US Tax Court and wrote and published the US Tax Court Digest for 40 years. My grandmother on my father’s side raised 3 boys on a cattle ranch in New Mexico. Needless to say, she was…

Justice Denied for Roof Customer in Hampton

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt: The following is a true story: Mr. Miller had a steep roof. It was so steep that he couldn’t walk on it. After a large storm, he needed a new roof. He contracted with a local roofing contractor to replace the roof for an amount over $10,000. The contractors replaced his roof and he paid them. He trusted that the contractor had done the job he had contracted for. At the end of the job, from as far as he could tell, it looked OK from the ground. Two months after Mr. Miller paid the contractor, the roof started to leak in several…

How To Make A Wise Contractor Selection

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt: Hiring a contractor for a home improvement project in Virginia Beach doesn’t have to be an exercise in pain and frustration. Unfortunately for many homeowners, it is just that. The key to making a successful home improvement investment lies in the selection of the contractor. Here in Hampton Roads, we’re a consumer product based society. Most of the products that we buy off of shelves at the department stores, the lot at the dealership or on the internet have already been assembled at the factory. We can hold them in our hands, kick the tires, smell the scent, listen to it work,…

Beware of House Flippers in Virginia Beach

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt: “A fool and their money are soon parted.” -Thomas Tusser in Five Hundreth Pointes of Good Husbandrie, 1573 There are many “great deals” in the housing market in today’s economy.   But how do you protect yourself against professional “house flippers” who may be unscrupulous?   These professionals buy a distressed property for a low price, apply some cosmetic fixes and then sell it for at a much higher price.  This is known as “Flipping a House”.  The unsuspecting new buyer may be buying a home with many problems that will be very costly to fix. As a home buyer, to protect your…

Some Contractor’s Just Can’t Say No

Archived; click post to view.
Excerpt: Some Contractors Just Can’t Say No – A Commentary by Jim Hicks It’s amazing to me how contractors are diversifying their products and services that they offer to their clients in this down economy. I was just talking to a contractor that supplies and installs overhead garage doors. During our short conversation he told me that lately they were installing a lot of granite countertops and commercial lighting. So I asked him what experience he had in doing these kinds of things. He said “None, it is a learn-as-you-go situation but I just can’t tell anybody no when they ask me…