Ah the holidays, a time relax and reflect.Â On Boxing Day,Â I was so relaxedÂ it dawned on me that I had not shut off theÂ water valve to theÂ tap outside.Â I was stunned.Â Visions of frozen pipes and blow dryers danced before my eyes!
NowÂ how did that happen?Â I think it’s the speed at which we live our lives.Â There’sÂ always more to do, more to remember, and not enough time.Â So what to do?Â Well, I found some pretty nifty home maintenance planning toolsÂ at ServiceMagic.com to help you manage your home throughout the year.Â I hear you.Â â€œWho wants another To Do list?Â Iâ€™m not going to remember to check the site etc.â€
Ah well – thatâ€™s the beauty of it, you donâ€™t have to go check the website or remember much of anything.Â This is (almost) 2007 and you can sign up for an rss feed to the calendar.Â Â So significant Home Maintenance To Dos and reminders get sent to your news reader or browser desktop â€œjust in timeâ€ â€“ automatically.Â Service Magicâ€™s, Calendar of Home Improvement To-Do’s
Check it out.Â Not all the tips areÂ going to apply to everyoneÂ (and someÂ sound likeÂ thinly veiledÂ attempts to generate leads for ServiceMagic) but even so, itâ€™s still a valuable service that will help keep your home renovation & maintenance efforts top of mind throughout the year.
One of the underlying ideas behind RenoVine.com is that we all can learn from others’ home renovation experiences and especially their mistakes.
Here are 2 articles by Allan Drury of The Journal News about one such cautionary tale, in all it’s gory and unsettling detail.
“The dispute is a good example of the troubles consumers and contractors can face when a large-scale home renovation project goes wrong.
The consumer ends up with an unfinished house and little recourse despite having spent hundreds of thousands of dollars. The contractor can be stuck without an easy way to collect money he feels he is legally owed. If the sides go to court, they can be in for a legal fight that can drag on for months.”
Read In-house dispute costs everyone first and then Both sides looking back. The latter article includes timely tips for both homeowners and buildersÂ / general contractors that will help you avoid litigious outcomes like this one.
Two things jumped out at me immediately.Â First, how the breakdown of trust and communicationÂ between the parties escalated the situation.Â How much effort did the contractor put into managing the process and the homeowners’ expectations?
Secondly,Â how important it is to check references, and from a wide variety of sources. One positive recommendation, even from a “trusted source”, isn’t enough. Stay tuned folks …
Welcome to RenoWire, part of a new local search startup RenoVine.com which will be launched in 2007. Here at RenoWire, it’s “all about the house” – presenting the best news, ideas and advice for homeowners from around the country, your city, and your neighborhood.
At RenoWire you will find:
- Significant home renovation news stories
- Timely home improvement articles & services
- Home management and automation tips
- Analysis of emerging trends in the home improvement, construction, real estate and home and garden retail industries
- Products for your home that really work
We will also be spotlighting houseblogs and other useful renovation-related sites from around the country as we go. All in the name of saving you time, money and hassle while hopefully entertaining you a little.
RenoWire is but the first stage of RenoVine.com (literally the “Renovation Grapevine”). Heh, we don’t even have formal design yet! But such is our enthusiasm for the subject, weâ€™re going to get started anyway. Itâ€™s never too soon to start doing what you really love and sharing what you know.
RenoWire is an independent, objective news source and is not affiliated with any of the companies, services, or blogs that may be profiled here.
Hope you enjoy and look forward to hearing from you!