If you've watched Bravo's "Flipping Out" and seen Jeff Lewis then you have a picture of a Project Manager. When taking on any remodel - especially if it's your first time - it's a smart move to hire a Project Manager. A good Project Manager will be someone who helps you every step of the way, from outlining the scope of work to finding the appropriate contractors, decorators and architects, and helping you in material selection, as well as keeping all parties on a budget and within a time frame. Before hiring a Project Manager, ensure they've managed several remodels for several years. They need to be able to show you samples in person or online of their work.
Here Are Qualities to Look for in a Project Manager:
- Years of Remodeling Experience: Like Jeff Lewis, A&R Home Designs was founded by a House Flipper, Adam Zucker. Seasoned Project Managers have been through dozens to even hundreds of remodels from as small as a bathroom to as large as adding second floors, moving roof lines and to even building an entire house from scratch. Ask whomever you're hiring to go into detail about their background and experience.
- Samples: Any Project Manager should have several photos of their work that they helped manage. Take it even a step further and see if they can show you in person a redesign project so you can really see the quality of their work. Photos can't show detail as well as in person.
- Excellent Organization Skills: Your Project Manager should be responsible for setting a work schedule and managing all crews to meet those deadlines. A Project Manager should know the proper steps that need to be taken for a smooth remodel.
- Be Good at Math: A good Project Manager likely works off an excel sheet or other organizational document to keep track of all the money being spent. It should be the PM's job to keep you on budget.
- Experience in Contract Negotiations: Project Managers have been there, done that. They should know how to read contracts from various contractors and suppliers to help you in your decision making process in outsourcing certain tasks. For example if you're getting your roof done, have your PM review the agreement and a PM may make suggestions, for example, having a cap on the amount a roofer can charge for unforeseen circumstances.
- Finding You Quality Items at Best Prices: A PM has been there and done that. A good one will be able to give you recommendations on where to find the best tile, vanities, cabinets, etc...
- Design: Project Managers, due to the nature of being in the industry for so long, should have a great eye. A Project Manager should listen to your advice, give advice and be open to inviting designers' suggestions as well. Project Managers should have a good knowledge about practical materials, popular colors and what's trending in home design.
- Reliable: If your Project Manager shows up late or is hard to communicate with before you're hiring him or her, walk away now. It's a sign that during the entire process this person may be late at times, miss deadlines and be hard to get a hold of.
- Good Energy: You need to like your Project Manager! Construction in general leads to unforeseen circumstances which may lead to headaches. You want someone by your side who can lift your spirits, comfort you, and ensure you everything will be alright.
If you're interested in working with a project manager or have questions about what one is, please contact us here.