The Three Don’ts of a Successful Remodel

By Scott Murfey,

Murfey Construction

How many of you have spent a lazy afternoon binge-watching episode after episode of HGTV’s “The Property Brothers” or “Love It or List It”? Watching contractors transform their clients’ homes into their dreams homes is certainly addicting. As a contractor, I know that there’s nothing better than the look on my client’s face after a successful renovation. And as a contractor, there’s nothing worse than the look on a client’s face after a nail gun accident. In order to keep a smile on your face during your remodel, here are a few things I would recommend NOT doing:

Don’t do it all yourself:

I definitely encourage my clients to get as involved in their remodels as their time and expertise allows. Not only can this save them money; there is also something satisfying about playing an active role in creating your space. However, the proliferation of DIY TV shows, design blogs, and YouTube videos misleads many into thinking that they can tackle every aspect of their remodel. Trying to take on projects that are outside your comfort zone can, first of all, ultimately add to the cost of the remodel. More important, however, is the safety factor. Working around electricity, power tools, and without the proper safety equipment can be dangerous, and has landed many novices in the emergency room.

Don’t be afraid to speak up:

One aspect of the home remodel that I encourage my clients to participate in 100 percent is communicating their ideas and desires. Some clients get intimidated because they feel that the contractor is the expert, and some feel that what their wish list is way outside their budget so it’s not worth mentioning all of it. However, I encourage my clients to get as detailed as possible. Write down a list of what you are hoping your remodel achieves and gather as many pictures as possible from design magazines and blogs. Experienced contractors have devised creative ways to problem solve, so you may be able to get a lot more than you think. And if your budget doesn’t allow for everything, you can talk with your contractor about completing it in stages.

Don’t ignore San Diego building codes and regulations:

It’s tempting to want to bypass the time and bureaucracy associated with getting your remodeling plans approved by the city, but it’s not worth it. If your remodel violates the city’s codes and regulations, you will be fined and required to make the changes needed to meet the city’s codes or return your home to its original state.

At Murfey Construction, we look forward to making your wish list into a reality. We also have years of experience working with San Diego’s building codes and regulations so you don’t have to navigate the process alone. To find out how we help you with all aspects of the remodeling process—general contracting, construction management, budgeting, and maintenance—log onto