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Home Remodeling Gone Wrong: 3 Contractor Projects You Can Remedy

Written by Realty Times Staff on Tuesday, 16 September 2014 12:16 pm

It’s a lot of work and it can be a lot of money to own a home. If you choose to remodel, there are a lot of things you can do yourself, but if it’s a bigger job than you can handle, you’re going to have to hire someone.

Let’s say that you wanted the interior of your house remodeled and you hired a contractor. After he left, you find that there were things he left unfinished. If you had it in writing that it was up to the contractor to do everything from start to finish and you had a detailed punch list, then you can call the contractor and tell him to come back to finish the job. If he doesn’t come back and won’t work with you, then you can call your state attorney general or your local builder’s association (it won’t cost you anything) to see how to proceed.

Sometimes the only way to proceed is to get your hands dirty, be it a faulty contract or miscommunication, there are many things that contractors can leave unfinished. You might find paint splatters on the wall or your jetted tub wasn’t caulked right. It’s up to you to decide how much effort and money you want to put into fixing whatever it is that the contractor oh-so-kindly left you with.

A Door Without A Knob

After the contractor’s gone you notice that he hadn’t put any of the doorknobs back in any of the doors. Expect to pay in the high end of the $86.99 - $162.04 per knob range for a licensed, bonded and insured contractor if the original culprit won't return.

However a basic interior doorknob runs around eight bucks. This is how to put one in:

First off: If you want to put in a door handle and not a door knob, then make sure you get a universal handle for both left and right hands, or make sure it’s one for the correct hand.

#1: Take the latch (backset) and insert it into the door. Make sure the rounded edge is facing the latch hole; if it doesn’t seat correctly, just tap it lightly with a hammer.

#2: Generally the door will have a mortise for the face plate one the latch. Use 3/4” screws to secure the latch to the door.

#3: Adjust the latch for the for the backset depth. (Note: most interior doors are 2 3/8”).

#4: Adjust the bracket size if necessary. Check the instructions that came with the doorknob if you don’t know how to adjust the bracket size. Your latch should be nice and secure.

#5: Take the doorknob, insert it through the backset and screw it together. Important: Make sure you insert the stem from the handle correctly into the latch.

#6: When everything is aligned and the knob is fitted against the door, screw it together with the screws that were provided. Important: Don’t over tighten the screws.

#7: Check how tight the larch fits in the latch hole by closing the door. If it’s loose, then place the latch place slightly back in the hole. If it’s tight, then move the latch all the way forward to the front of the hole. You may have to work with it to adjust the fit correctly.

A Pantry Door With A Squeak

The doorknobs are done, but the contractor also forgot to get rid of the squeak in the pantry door. If you want to get rid of it yourself, it’ll run anywhere from three to 15 dollars; once you've shopped around and found a fit. Here’s how to do it:

Important: Make sure you wear a dust mask and gloves when you are applying the lubricant, and keep the area well-ventilated. Have a dry rag handy to clean up any lubricant spills.

#1: Apply Elmer’s Slide-All Dry Spray Lubricant to each hinge on the door. Make sure you apply it on both on the inside and outside of the hinge.

#2: Open and close the door of the cabinet to make sure the lubricant hits all part of the hinges.

#3: Tighten all the hinges with a screwdriver.

A Yard With A Stump

The remodeling of your home can mean your yard, too. A contractor might miss that old stump or you might want to save money and oust the stump yourself.

Research consider doing it yourself either mechanically, chemically, manually, naturally or with fire. If a rented stump grinder is in your price range, it makes the most sense to follow the mechanical route.

Note: Wear proper safety gear, including goggles, when attempting to remove a tree stump manually or with heavy machinery. To protect yourself further, wear long sleeved shirts, long pants and gloves.

The company that you rented the grinder from will have given you a set of instructions on how to use it. There are things to do, though, before you start the grinder.

#1: First, get rid of any debris and rocks from around the stump.

#2: Next you’ll need to remove the bulk of the stump.

#3: Do this by using a chain saw; cut as close to the ground as possible. Now you can use the stump grinder to grind up and eliminate the stump.

If you are stuck with the unfinished mess from a contractor or you have a lawn that needs to be remodeled, don't panic. Consider your legal options, followed by DIY approaches to complete that much desired remodel.

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