tv [untitled] September 15, 2013 6:30pm-7:01pm PDT
longer the contractor is there the more costs there are. they are inevitable on some projects. there are some projects you know there will be changes and should budget for those both in time and money e. knowing if there are details you don't know or areas you will uncover on a project you should have money put aside and time to say that we know there will be money and time to deal with this issue. the better you prepare before a job the better the details are the better the set of plans, the more detailed the work is, the less change orders there are and less surprises for you as the homeowner. >> harvey i knew you would talk about the more you spend up front in organizing the plans and getting all the questions answered the costs incurred make the project go smoother and have an impact on the long run. what's your take on that?
>> of course the at one extreme, if you go into a project by kind of just a bunch of workers and over alls come on the site and you figure out what to do, it's totally out of control. you can, the other extreme is spending a lot of money figuring out everything in advanced in a remodel means explore tory demolition which could cost more than the inefficiency of discovering. you just have to attempt to make an appropriate judgment for the level of preplanning on your particular job. that's why another reason why it's extremely useful to have a contractor's advice during the
planning process not just trying to come up with a number but to talk about constructability and the degree of detailing required. >> but you can expect on every home remodel project to find unforeseen conditions? everyone. you open up a wall and say, i didn't realize there would be so much wiring or dry rot or old abandoned plumbing. i have never seen a job where there were not unforeseen conscience. you are lucking if it's under 10 or 15 of the budget. >> you need to set aside a lump sum or some money to cover unforeseen conditions rather than be surprised and disappointed. we want to meet your expectations. expect there to be unforeseen conditions. set aside the construction budget plus how much? 15 percent?
>> depending on how much gutting you are doing, how much demolition. minimum 10-15 percent. set aside 20 percent and you will be pleasantly surprised. >> what you do is take the left over money and throw a big party for all the subcontractors and the architects. >> in our situation we are nofists. what do we do in a situation where we have an architect and a contractor and they are going to proceed with the project and we have, x, number of dollars. who over sees our money to know we are getting the quality that the 2 particulars are -- >> excellent question. >> who do we have that we know that we can trust so do we -- in the literature we have been
reading and researching they suggest may be we could hire the house inspectors, home inspectors to probably over see to be the bridge for the liaison between builder and homeowner. >> excellent question. so, the question the gentlemen asked is actually directly related to a new virgining field of people who represent the owners to make sure their home remodels are being done properly. traditionally that was the job of the architect. >> in my opinion for remodel job that isn't some monumental sized project, a project manager or a separate project manager or whatever title this person might
apply is -- probably has no benefit for the over a responsible architect's work, which in a normal owner/architect agreement, part of what the architect does it not only go to the job site and look at the contractor's construction work to see that it's, you know, going along in general conformance with the drawings but every time the contractor submits a request for a progress payment and the final payment the architect goes out, reviews what's done on the site and certifies that this is a fair request. or perhaps modifies it and says, no you are not 65 percent done with the plumbing you are 45 percent. that provides the safe guard for
the homeowner. every contractor is totally used to that way of working. there is no awkwardness or resentness it's the way business is done. >> make that part of your contract with the architect, come out and do these services harvey explained. there is someone else, that's the building inspect or. he is your expert. your hired expert, you are hiring him whether you want to or not because you have to get a building permit. they will come out and see that the work is done according to the minimal standards of the code. the codes are the bottom line. you can't do it worse than the code. the inspector makes sure your construction, whatever it is meets that standard, they are working for you. in addition to the architect. you have another set of eyes. >> most contractors don't like
it if the homeowner is there for the inspection but it's a good idea. to walk through and see what the comments are. usually it's 9 and 12 in the morning or 1 and 3:30 in the afternoon. it's not a set time but it's a good time to be there. if your architect doesn't offer ca, there are instead of house inspectors i would look under construction management. there are construction managers that work with the owners to go over the invoices from the contra contractor. >> that's appropriate for major projec projects. >> they are set up terror major projects over a million dollars. >> a lot of contractors tell you once the job's done they don't need the -- you may say to the architect, do we need to
keep paying the architect and the contractor says no , i have plans i can do it. the architect's participation in the renovation doing construction administration is priceless. all these things will come at you and you can bounce it off your architect, does this sound like it makes sense? do we have to move one wall and's 75 thousand dollars. he may say, no. i recommend when possible to have the architect, it's better for the contractor. when the contractor submits a request for a change he knows there will will be a professional that will back him up. >> the permit fee because the permit fee cost construction estimate; right . this is not the real number? >> right.
so how do you determine a permit fee? the permit fee is an extremely small fee. people get wound up about the city's costing so much. it does cost but it's a small piece of your whole project from beginning to end. if you want to know the permit fee you need an evaluation. how much will the project cost? then you call the building department 558-6088 and they will tell you somebody there will tell you how much the permit me and plan check fee will be. there are other fees the planning department fee, fire fee, school district fee. there may be other types of fees. and but your architect can help you do that. she's raising an interesting point. and the interesting point is, how much do you as the homeowner need to know? do you want to become an expert
in home remodeling? you do want to become the contractor? no. no. when you do your taxes you can do them yourself or go to the tax attorney. if you need help with a lawyer you don't study the law you hire a lawyer. i urge you not to try to become experts this is a complicated and difficult field. home remodel involves so much you don't want to be the expert you have other things to do you are a dentist. don't be a home remodelist hire the expert. >> i agree i don't want become an expert but i do want to know what i'm talking about. i want to know in the flow chart the step by step of what a normal home redevelopment process goes through. is there a web panl or book or a
source that let me educate myself to the point i can discuss this with my experts in a knowledgeable way? there's 2 magazines one is, fine home building. one is the journal of right construction. both of those magazines have websites and they have lists of reference books. there are many books on how to plan a remodel and how to schedule a remodel. those are 2 excellent magazines for the type of project you will do. >> there are book stores that have books relateded to construction. >> builder's book store in berkeley have a lot of the taughton books are there. a good contractor will have a detailed microsoft schedule. that shows where all the
decisions are the client has to make. how they affect the flow chart. the critical path. and any contractor other than if it's a guy in a truck he probably won't have that. a general contractor that has staff and has more than a couple of people in their office will have a spreadsheet they use or a spreadsheet or scheduling program they use that have all the owner's decisions that need to be made and all of the mile stones that are critical. it's something you want to ask the builders you are interviewing, what's their schedule look like and ask to see a schedule. any builder will show that to you. assume you have a good contra contractor and has done a good job and have a good architect and you paid the contrekter sums of money and have a
relationship. what would you as professionals advise us to thank them? how can we thank them? [laughter]. what a great question. >> today's best question. >> harvey mentioned everybody says the end of the job we will have a bbq or party and everybody over. it's probably a small percentage of the people that follow through with that. that's a way of showing. it doesn't have to be an expensive affair something to show you appreciate. in the long-term you by referring them to your friend. if i get, i get all of our calls are referred from past clients. >> we will move on and talk about the other 2 issues time issues and quality issues and we don't have a lot of time we will do this quickly. what is a reasonable achievable time and we were talking about
how long people think about these before they do it. when somebody is building a big addition to their building and somebody says, i need my permit right away so i can start working. i think, they need their permit it's the end of july and rain in october. they have to think about how their scheduling will work with the seasons how long does it typically take a story addition to a house in san francisco? what's a construction time for that? >> i'd say if it's anything more than a kitchen and bath you are looking at kitchens and bath you do for under 4 months. once you are building up a new story it will be at least 6 months. >> minimum and typically longer. i usually say and other contr t contractors think about this
when you get the thing framed up and looks like you got your product you are halfway done. when the sheet rock is up you are halfway done. people say look at that, we are well along. >> people are disappointed when it takes as long to finish the job. >> last 5 percent of the work the trim and the carpeting and that's a big piece and it takes a lot of time. that's what you see. that's where you don't want to try to cut your budget at the end of the project because that's what people see. if you have a fixed unchangeable goal i want this done so my aunt can visit at christmas. you will be disapointed it will not be done and she will not be able to stay there. it's not reasonable. it's like going sailing, i will
be at the pier at 1:30. may be you will depends on the wind and the tide. you may aunt may has to stay at another place for a couple of weeks. >> a lot of people failed to right that down. i want to encourage you. >> to meet your expectations, say you are building an addition and the contractor says we will get this done in 9 or 11 months. tell yourself 14 months and if it's done sooner this is bonus for us. you will meet your expectations. >> if you are not experienced in doing this it's your 50 remodel. i would highly recommend is have a once a week site meeting. the contractor may say this will slow me down. an hour a week will not slow
dount contractor and you have a site meeting and go over the schedule. where are we compared to the schedule. the worst thing to do is not talk to the conattracter. if he's busy he doesn't want to talk to you and if he's behind he doesn't want to talk to you. if you meet once a week, where are we? a once a week, some projects are different and you can't always meet once a week. that's something you should plan into our project so there are no surprises at the end and you can monitor your project. >> unexpected rain. >> rain is never unexpected it's always going to rain. >> what is the proper way of handling rain not expected baud the project is behind. we have all seen it windose are taken out of the house and rains for 3-4 days or you are in the
middle of a roof and the rain starts. what do you do when this happens. >> dan, how do you deal with rain issues? >> delays if you are digging a foundation or you are building an addition and it's raining hard you cannot work. and so the contractor is not responsible for delays due to inclement weather. what the contractor is responsible for is to leave your house protected from the elements. it's the contractor's responsibility if he takes out the windows to check the weather report and have tarps on hand. the same with the finishes that need to be protected it's his responsibility to tarp the house off and protect you. if it rains for 40 days and the schedule he gave you is extend
the. >> people say, how long does it take to get a permit for an addition? san francisco has a very lengthy notification process for neighbors. and the purpose is to allow the neighbors to be involved and the process to make sure the building is in conformance with the character of the neighborhood and the appeals are heard. you come out to get a permit for an addition back or up, within if you got within 5 months you are doing really well, frankly, seriously because of the requirements for neighborhood notification and meetings with the neighbors and planning department process. it's not building department structural review it's the planning part and process. it's not that they are slow it's that the board of supervisors passed legislation that requires waiting periods.
>> what kind of a project has to go through this send out the notifications to the neighbors? does every permit need this? is there a cut off that certain times only certain permits you go through that process? >> what requires neighborhood notification? >> what required neighborhood notification is if you expand the building envelope increasing the space and certain improvements that would be triggered by building requirements such as requiring a fire wall that would require a 311 notice in the neighborhoods. also certain decks above 10 feet in the rear. 10 feet in height. >> most things that increase the size of the building or have an impact on the neighbors require neighborhood notification under section 311.
planning code. >> you can add that if all the work is going to be done within the existing envelope of the house that those are projects that do not have to go through. >> that's right. >> if the work is within the walls of the existing building the existing envelope, you don't have to do neighborhood notification. typically. typically. there may be exceptions to that. if you are changing the number of dwelling units. may be not that under what sishg circumstances. it's in a historic district. it's things like garage door openings, these sorts of things. not necessarily require neighborhood notification but require an extra layer of process. >> okay we have 2 minutes i
want to talk about quality and i have one comment to make, that's that the cost and the hassle are forgotten but the product is what you live with for as long as you live in the house. so of all the things you should focus on it's not, let's see the cheapest fixture it's what fixture will make me the happiest. quality is the thing most people are focused on 15 years later. >> i did a remodel 10 years ago i don't know what it cost but i like the work they did. >> nobody come into a party in your house and says, lawrence, that's a really cheap stove. [laughter]. thank you very much for coming. it was a great discussion and
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>> good afternoon. i'm the chief building inspector with the department building inspection. welcome to our brown bag lunch series. this is the regular third thursday of every month event. we are finishing up with a talk about the outside lambs, an area that was previously considered uninhabitable. uninhabitable due to fog. [inaudible] but we have with us a couple of real experts in outside plans. -- i am outside -- in outside lands. woody has devoted a lot of his time and effort to the outside
lands. >> we are a nonprofit in our 10th year, and we are dedicated to preserving and sharing the history of san francisco. >> it is great to have you here. and pat, who has a lot of knowledge and brought to be sure today a lot of [inaudible] , and she can share with that -- she can share that with us as well, and we only regret that harvey the wonder dog could not be here. we talked about [inaudible] what area, generally, are we talking about? >> the term came from what was called the pueblo land when the san francisco peninsula was switched over from mexican ownership to american ownership. certain tracts were preserved, so there was a more orderly, even though it took decades,
transfer of ownership of those lands, but there were also what were called pueblo lands, which were sort of a poem by the town, and then, there was a whole lot of discussion about what should happen to those -- which were sort of zero and -- sort of owned by the town. >> so was san francisco's bordered upon at the time, or did that happen later? >> san mateo county did not exist when they originally chartered it. i think there were 16 counties, and a few years later, they said they were too large, so they doubled back and created san mateo county. >> this is an early map of an area that might have been known as san francisco, but it did not
have a defined southern boundary yet. >> the city i believe was up larkin street, and everything west was counties. i think larkin was here. that is the original charter. then in 1850, van ness, who was the supervisor, did the addition. it was called the western addition, even though it was in the middle of the city, because it was west of larkin. >> i did not understand that when i was a child. it always seemed that it was east of where everything i knew was. >> all this down here was county of san francisco, so there was a point in time where you could be in the county of san francisco, but not in the city you live in these outside lands.
>> lead problem is if you look at the orientation, no. is up. we are going to turn it the way we are normally accustomed to seeing it. here is where the golden gate bridge is. here is where the bay bridge is. the county went all the way down here, and about a year later, they moved the county to write about here, so this was county land or outside land, and this was the city. this was 1861, so the city has grown by this much. these were added, and they are basically pasture lands. that is where petrero street is. >> and out here, the rancho -- what is a rancho? >> it is a mexican land grant that we agreed to respect when
we still california from the mexicans. we agreed to respect the land grants that existed, and there was a commission set up. regretfully, none of the land grants were legally bested, so most of them were taken away from the mexicans. the other portion were pureblo lands, which would be considered entitled to four square leaks -- leagues. so 30 square miles with the possession of the pueblo of san francisco for public use, and that is how we got golden gate. when they acquired it as publicly, part of the treaty said you had to all mexican law, which set a certain amount of outside plants must be used for schools, playgrounds, open space. the origina
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