Kitchen Project Management
Managing Your Own Trades
A common question we are asked is, "Can I use my own trades?". There are a number of reasons people choose to do this, but the most common is the desire to save money on the project. We get it, but there are a number of things to consider before going down this path.
What sort of relationship do you have with the trades you are considering? Is it someone you know well and have respect for in quality of workmanship, or is it someone who has provided a cheaper quote? Are they familiar with the kitchen projects and working in with a larger team? Are they flexible, available, and most importantly, reliable?
The relationship we have built over years of working on projects with our team is key. When things get tricky, or the unexpected happens, and that happens sometimes, it's the relationships we have with our team that makes the difference. It might be as simple as one of the team putting in a little time on a Saturday to get the job done, or shuffling things around on short notice to work in with a project delay. Don't underestimate the value of a good working relationship in the context of a large project!
There are always cost considerations when embarking on a project the size of a kitchen renovation. There is a budget and a list of things to fit within that constraint. But costs are sometimes hidden, and saving a few dollars in one area can cost you plenty in others.
In the end if the quality is not up to standard, that in itself is a cost. It may mean repairs, replacement, or living with something you are not happy with. We don't compromise on quality, and true, there is a cost associated with that. What you also get is peace of mind knowing the job is done right and to the highest standards.
Another thing to consider is damage. If your trades damage something onsite that's a situation you will need to negotiate with them, possibly leaving you with a cost you had not anticipated. We cover our workmanship and the project is covered by our building insurance. More peace of mind!
This is often underestimated. Managing trades requires time, and as the old saying goes: time is money! You need to factor your time into the budget. If you are time poor, managing your own trades is probably a stress you can do without. You might save some dollars at one end only to lose them and more at the other.
Managing time and getting things in place is one thing, knowing when something is being done to standard is another. An experienced project manager will prevent problems from occurring before they become issues. It's the experience that makes the difference.
A problem prevented is a cost avoided! Again, the question is whether it's worth trying to save money at one end only to lose it and potentially more at the other. Imagine the cost of having to rip out part of your kitchen because of faulty or sub standard workmanship by a trade you are managing.
We manage the timeline of all our projects carefully. We maintain a schedule that accounts for each step in the process. Years of experience means we can forecast the time required for each step, and manage the impact if things get delayed. Delays are frustrating and can cost you more than money if things blow out from a poorly managed project schedule.
Again, the ability to forecast and manage a project schedule is vital in the smooth progression of a kitchen renovation. Having one unreliable trade in the chain can cause delays that have a flow on effect that may mean long and frustrating delays. Remember, other projects are scheduled for each and every trade involved in your project, and they may not be able to accomodate last minute changes to the schedule if delays occur.
It is our preference that our trades complete the work on the projects we manage. This is because we firmly believe that it is the most efficient and cost effect way to ensure your project is completed on time and to the highest possible standard.
Going back to the first point mentioned; Relationships. In the end, we want you to have the kitchen of your dreams where the relationships with all involved are better at the end than the beginning - just like a good renovation!