The Biggest Home Addition Problems You Might Encounter: The Work You Don’t See

It’s our final blog in the Home Addition Problem series! Hopefully everything we’ve covered these last few weeks has helped you understand more about the process of having a home addition done to your home, as well as taught you some ways to get around any problems that may arise (because they can, and they will!)

So today, in our final blog, we thought we’d cover a problem we hear many people express frustration over, and that’s the work you don’t see. Maybe you have people at your house every single day for two weeks. Looking at your home, getting you bids, tearing out walls, and all of that exciting activity. And then nothing for several days (or longer). Or maybe there are people at your home every single day, but when they go home for the day, it doesn’t look like anything has happened.

You’re probably wondering one of two things: “did they forget about my project?” or “are they even doing anything when they come?”

Here’s the simple answer: these jobs ebb and flow and some parts of the project have a bigger visual impact than others. 

So let’s start out by addressing that first part, the ebbing and flowing. With every project, there’s a period of time where a whole bunch of work gets done really fast: framing and roofing are great examples of this. But then plumbing, heat and air, or electrical need to happen and it seems like no improvements have been made all week.

For certain aspects of the project, we’re simply not qualified to do the work, and so we have to work with subcontractors. This is a good thing, because you wouldn’t want a roofing specialist to try to do your electrical work and vice versa. They wouldn’t know how to do each other’s job properly.

And so we need to wait for the subcontractors to have room in their schedule to come to your home. We can’t sheetrock everything until the electrical is done, which means there will be days where work can’t be done on your project. However, the good thing about this is that in most cases, your contractor has contacted the subcontractors ahead of time and if they can’t be there immediately, your contractor has already worked these delays into the project timeline before you even sign the contract.

So how about that second part, where it seems like nothing has changed, even if people have been at your home every single day? Going back to the framing versus electrical example, with framing, there are very visible changes that can happen very quickly. One day there could be no wall, and the next there is one. However, with electrical, while it is a major project that can take some time to make sure it’s done right, you may not be able to tell a big difference day to day, as it’s only wires being threaded around the home, and not huge walls being removed or installed.

And that’s how the length of the project will go. It will ebb and flow as we wait for scheduling to be worked out, or as smaller, more precise projects make way to big scale, very visible changes. Chances are, even if it may seem like nothing is happening, there is actually quite a bit of work happening behind the scenes.

So don’t be afraid to ask your contractor. As we’ve mentioned in previous blog posts, it never hurts to communicate. If no one shows up to do work for several days, it never hurts to ask what’s going on. Have him tell you where you’re at with the schedule or show you the work that’s been done that may be harder to see. By keeping that communication line open with your contractor, you’ll not only understand more of what is going on with your project, you’ll also feel more involved and happier with the end result.

And that’s a wrap on our Problems series! Was this helpful? Were there any other problems you’ve encountered or have wondered about that we didn’t cover? We’d love to know! Leave us a comment on the Facebook post and we’ll make sure to work it into future content!