Frequently Asked Question's
Do you provide project schedules?
We do provide project schedules on all of our projects. One thing about schedules and remodeling, they are always changing. We try to keep the client updated as much as possible with the schedule changing. We provide daily communication on the status of our projects. As a wise person once said “He who fails to plan, plans to fail”. When we first start discussing a project, we can give you ballpark estimates of time frame to complete a project. Before we start the project, we will provide you with an actual project schedule.
Can you match the existing look of our house with our new remodeling project?
Our goal on any remodeling project is to match the existing house wherever we work. We want to make look as if the new remodeling addition was always there. You can look through our kitchen, bath, and room addition galleries where we added on, its hard to tell where worked on the home. This is very important on any remodeling project, you don’t want your new project to stick out like a sore thumb.
This is our first remodeling attempt; does your company design plans based on our ideas since we have no drawn plans? Or do we need blueprints from an architect?
We have a design team that will sit with you, listen and design a rough draft of your remodeling ideas, then present to you the finished drawing in a 3D format providing an excellent visual of the finished room. You’ll be able to review at this point and make changes (if needed) to the colors, floor coverings, counter-top finishes, cabinets or possibly second thoughts.
How long have you been in business?
GB General Contractors has been in business for over 30 years now, we went into business in September of 1979. Click here to read more about our family business.
Our knowledge of remodeling costs is lacking, is there anyway you can give us a budget range of what our project might cost?
Yes we can, based on our 30 plus years of business we can give you a ballpark range of where you costs could be. We can talk with you over the phone to figure out your remodeling project details and give you a range in cost. Now this is just a ballpark range, once all the details and selections have been finalized we can give you hard numbers. Sometimes clients can be hesitant to discuss budget numbers, but when it comes down to it, the budget is the biggest concern with any project.
Do you general contractors or home builders have to be licensed in state of Texas to remodel or build homes?
At this current time general contractors/builders do not have be licensed in the state of Texas to work on or build homes. There has been some talk of developing a licensing program in the future, but nothing has been confirmed at this point.
I have heard the term “DesignBuild”, what exactly does this mean?
DesignBuild is a term used for a contractor that handles a project from conception to finish. The client meets with the contractor of their choice; during the initial meeting, the contractor will discuss costs associated with the remodeling project. Once the client is comfortable with the budget numbers, then they will work closely with the contractor’s design team. The design team will come up with drawings that meet the client’s ideas while keeping within the suggested budget. Once the design is approved by the client, a written proposal is submitted for approval, signed by both parties and the remodeling project is under way!
What are the benefits of DesignBuild?
The benefit is we establish a working relationship between the owner, designer/ architect and the builder before construction ever begins; everyone has input on the project, the client is comfortable with the team, be it questions or changes, therefore communication is facilitated and the project flows smoothly. The downside of not having the team built at the onset is that you might design yourself out of your initial budget before you realize it has indeed exceeded the dollar amount set. Plan, discuss, design, view…then proceed.
We need help with design possibilities of our remodeling project, do you have someone who can help us?
Yes, we have a design team that is great at listening to the needs of your project. Then they can present you with options that can work within your project. They have a long history in the remodeling industry, they remodeled homes for 10 to 15 years before they started on designing projects. This helps with creating the best design possible within your project. Another benefit is that we discuss the remodeling project budget numbers with you first, lets face it, budget is the biggest concern in any project. So we discuss the budget and our design team develops a design that fits the clients budget. Its really a win win situation.
Do you have an interior designer that can help us?
Yes we have licensed experienced interior designers that can help you through the design process.
What does CAP stand for?
CAP stands for Certified Aging in Place, helping physically challenged people by redesigning their home to accommodate their particular needs as they age, all the while keeping comfort and accessibility as their number one concern.
Should I get references from the general contractor or builder I choose?
Yes, any quality general contractor or builder you choose should be able and willing to provide you with a list of references of past clients.
When is the best time to remodel my home?
It is preferable to start planning your remodeling project right after the first of the year and begin construction in early spring. The holiday celebrations are over, things are less hectic around your home and depending on the size of the project, you can enjoy a peaceful summer.
How do I know if I should remodel or simply build a new home?
It all depends on the value of your home in comparison to the cost of your remodeling project. Right now is a great time to remodel because of how low interest rates are on home loans. Many people love their current home if they could add a room or redesign their kitchen. If you feel that you will not be able to recoupe investment then it would be best to build a new home. You can check with a local Realtor to see what homes are selling for in your neighborhood and they could give you a estimate of what your house would be worth once your remodeling project is complete.
Are you apart of any trade organizations?
Yes, GB General Contractors are proud members of the Greater Houston Builder Association, the Remodelors Council, member of the National Association of Home Builders, member of the BBB Better Business Bureau, and member of the Texas Association of Builders. Read more about us. In 2005 Gil Boyles was the president of the Remodelors Council, he lead the Remodelors Council to build a home for Habit for Humanity in 5 days.
Have you ever done any charity work before?
Yes we have worked on several remodeling projects that really helped out some people out. While Gil Boyles was the president of the Remodelors Council he lead them to build a home for habit for humanity in just 5 days. Gil and some other leaders within the Council really stepped up and put in a lot of planning and hard work to complete the project in 5 days. It was incredible to see how happy the new home owners were when they saw the finished house, it made all the long hours worth it!
One of our family members is handi cap, do you do handicap remodeling?
Yes we do, we quite a bit of ADA work. We do work for a Trust fund bank that manages trusts of handicap individuals. We have retrofitted bath rooms to allow for handicap access. We remodel the entire bathroom to allow the individual to be able to roll into the shower with their wheel chair, we setup the bathroom vanity to allow the wheelchair to roll right up under it for access. It all depends on individual clients needs, we have worked on projects where the client was almost completely paralyzed and we designed things to meet their needs.
What kind of ADA features have you worked on before?
Our most common one would be the roll in shower that is wheelchair accessible. We install and setup the hand held shower that allows the client more convenience and accessiblity. We usually install grab bars in the clients desired location. We have installed ADA toilets to allow the client to maneuver their wheelchair over the toilet. We have built and installed custom vaniety cabinets that allow the client to roll right under the vaniety to use the sink and not be burned by the water pipes. We have widned existing door ways for wheelchair access and installed pocket doors to create easier access to bathrooms. We have also poured concrete ramps that allow for easy wheelchair access into the clients house.
What does Aging In Place mean? We are seeing this term in numerous remodeling magazines.
Aging in Place is the term used when a home owner requires modifications to their current home to make it more comfortable for them as they age, or perhaps thinking ahead with thoughts of doorways being too narrow for a wheelchair or staircases not being feasible in the near future for a parent living with them. We have done room additions to accommodate for aging parent and created a walk-in shower to makes more accessible.
Do you have references we can call to verify your work?
We certainly do and we would gladly provide you with a list of references of our past clients. We have references for room additions, kitchen remodels, bathroom remodels, custom homes, ADA work, designer/architects that we work with, engineers that we work with, and banks that we use. Our past clients have been nice enough to visit with our future clients and show them the work we have done for them. Some of our past clients have used us to complete several projects, on one of our clients homes we added on the complete 2nd story of their home, remodeled their master bath, guest bath and bedroom, and remodeled their pool house. Not all of these projects were done at the same time. Feel free to read reviews from our clients posted on our Houzz page.
Is there additional training you do to stay up with the latest building codes and new materials?
We attend seminars through out the year to stay current with the latest building trends and requirements. TRCC requires us to take to attend a seminar once every five years to stay current.
Is your company a Lead Certified? Are certified to work on lead based homes?
Yes we are ‘Certified Renovators’, according to the EPA you have be a ‘Certified Renovator’ to work on any home that was built pre 1978. One of our project managers teaches the ‘Certified Renovator’ course. There is a small possibility that if your home is built pre 1978 it could have lead based paint, so the home has to be tested for lead based paint. If the home tests positive for lead based paint, there is a specific process that has to take place to safely remove the paint.
Do you use third party inspections?
Any remodeling projects within the city limit will be inspected by the municipal inspectors. All remodeling projects outside of the city limits will be inspected by 3rd party inspectors. That way the client has proof that we built their project right and to current specs.
Do you have to have plans to start construction?
We require plans almost on all of our projects. That way the client and contractor are on the same page and their is no misunderstandings. If there is any structure changes or modifications, we get engineered stamped and approved plans before construction starts. Things can go downhill real quick if they aren’t built properly and the plans aren’t to the engineers specs. There is no reason to avoid this step, this simply insures everyone that project is built properly and to code.
How long have your contractors worked for you?
Some of our contractors have been with us for the last 15 years. We have a great working relationship with all of our contractors.
What kind of work do you specialize in?
GB General Contractors is a remodeling, designbuild firm. Our team can take your project from the initial design phase to completion. We specialize in kitchen redesign, master bath remodels, room additions, garage conversions, and whole house remodeling.