Frequently Asked Questions

What things can I do to expedite my remodel?
Due to the nature of remodeling, it is difficult to accurately estimate the length of a project. However, there are some things that you can do in preparation of your remodel that can help speed up the process.

1.Know what you want from the start
Know how you want to use the finished space that you plan to remodel. Making changes to design elements, features, and material selections during your project can slow down your project and create additional costs. This shouldn’t discourage you from making changes during your project, but you should be aware of the additional time and cost you may incur.

2. Make your material selections early on
Once you make your material selections, we place the orders. Depending on the products you chose, it can take anywhere from 2-6 weeks to have your selections delivered. Once the materials for your project are delivered, we can progress quickly.

3. Plan on not using the space being remodeled
We can work much faster if we are not working around you. If you cannot live without the functionality of the space being remodeled, expect for the project to take longer.

Will subcontractors and other workers be in my house when I am not at home?
Yes. Our subcontractors are some of the best and most qualified in Knoxville. We have never had any trust problems with our subcontractors. If you have specific dates where you need to have work stopped, we can work with you. We understand that you’re life does not stop when our work begins.
What is a building permit and why would I need one?
A building permit gives legal permission to start a building, improvement, alteration or repair project in accordance with the building codes. There are several reasons you should get a permit:

1. Your home or business is an investment. If your project does not comply with applicable codes, the value of your investment may be reduced.

2. Property insurers may not cover work done without permits.

3. If you sell your home or building that has been modified without a permit, you may be required to demolish or remove the modification or pay for costly repairs.

4. By obtaining permits, complying with code requirements and having all inspections, you are ensuring the safety, health and welfare of yourself, your family and the public.

What could happen if I don't obtain a building permit?
There are several reasons it is imperative that you obtain a permit when a municipality requires one:

1. Costly penalties could be assessed for work that has been done without a permit from the building department.

2. Insurance companies do not normally insure property that has been improved without permits or that has not been inspected by a certified inspector.

3. The illegal work performed may create unsafe or hazardous conditions that could result in injury or even death.

4. The process to obtain a permit after the fact is the same as the process to obtain a permit in the first place.

Construction Terms
Architectural Drawing
A line drawing showing plan and/or elevation views of the proposed building for the purpose of showing the overall appearance of the structure.
As-Built Drawings (known as Record Drawings)
Contract drawings marked up to reflect changes made during the construction process. It is good practice to make As-Built drawings by marking the changes on reproducible drawings for duplication purposes later.
Building Code
The legal requirements set up by the various governing agencies covering the minimum acceptable requirements for all types of construction.
Building Permit
A written document issued by the appropriate governmental authority permitting construction to begin on a specific project in accordance with drawings and specifications approved by the governmental authority.
Change Order
A written document between the owner and the contractor, signed by both, authorizing a change in the work or an adjustment in the contract sum or contract time. The contract sum and the contract time may be changed by a change order. A change order may be in the form of additional compensation or time or less compensation or time known as a deduction.
Cost Plus Fee Agreement (Cost-Plus)
A written agreement with the owner under which the contractor or the architect and engineer is reimbursed for his/her direct and indirect costs and, in addition, is paid a fee for his services. The fee is usually stated as a stipulated sum or as a percentage of cost.
Contract Documents
A term used to represent all executed agreements between the owner and contractor; any general, supplementary or other contract conditions; the drawings and specifications; all addenda issued prior to execution of the contract; and any other items specifically stipulated as being included in the contract documents.
A properly licensed individual or company which agrees to furnish labor, materials, equipment and associated services to perform the work as specified for a specified price.
Design-Build Construction
When a Prime or Main contractor bids or negotiates to provide Design and Construction services for the entire construction project.
An opinion about the approximate cost or value of something. (see Proposal)
Fixed Fee
A set contract amount for all labor, materials, equipment and services and contractor’s overhead and profit for all work being performed.
General Contractor
Properly licensed individual or company having primary (prime) responsibility for the work.
General Contracting (the traditional method)
When a prime or main contractor bids the entire work AFTER the final design, plans and specifications are complete and have been approved by the owner.
A term used to represent all drawings, including sections and details and any supplemental drawings, for complete execution of a specific project.
Preliminary Drawings
1. The drawings that precede the final approved drawings.

2. Usually these drawings are stamped or titled “PRELIMINARY”; and the “PRELIMINARY” is removed from the drawings upon being reviewed and approved by the owner.

Professional Engineer
One who is professionally engaged in a branch of engineering.
A word used to represent the overall scope of work being performed to complete a specific construction job.
Project Manager (Project Management)
A qualified individual or firm authorized by the owner to be responsible for coordinating time, equipment, money, tasks and people for all or specified portions of a specific project.
Proposal (also called Quote)
Far more specific and binding than an estimate, a proposal is a written offer from a bidder to the owner, preferably on a prescribed proposal form, to perform the work and to furnish all labor, materials, equipment and/or services for the prices and terms quoted by the bidder.
Scope of Work
A written range of view or action; outlook; hence, room for the exercise of faculties or function; capacity for achievement; all in connection with a designated project.
Standards of Professional Practice
A listing of minimum acceptable ethical principals and practices adopted by qualified and recognized professional organizations to guide their members in the conduct of specific professional practice.
An abbreviation for Subcontractor.
A written form of agreement between the prime or main contractor and another contractor or supplier for the satisfactory performance of services or delivery or material as set forth in the plans and specifications for a specific project.
A qualified subordinate contractor to the prime or main contractor.
Underwriter's Laboratories Label (UL)
A label on a product or manufactured item showing the material is regularly tested by, and complies with the minimum standards of the Underwriter’s Laboratories specification for safety and quality.
One that sells materials or equipment not fabricated to a special design.
Working Drawing
A drawing sufficiently complete with plan and section views, dimensions, details, and notes so that whatever is shown can be constructed and/or replicated without instructions but subject to clarifications.
Restrictions of areas or regions of land within specific geographical areas based on permitted building size, character, and uses as established by governing urban authorities.

Around the House on News Talk Radio 98.7
National Association of Home Builders (N.A.H.B)
Home Builders Association of Greater Knoxville (H.B.A.G.K.)
Knoxville Chamber of Commerce
Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce
Tellico Village Home Center
Knoxville Area Rescue Ministries (KARM)
Adopt-a-stream/Knoxville Water Quality Forum