New Home Construction, remodeling, and renovations are coming back to Southwest Florida at a break neck pace. If you are new to the area you will learn that as the pendulum swings in this direction so does the shortage of good qualified labor. When the real estate market took a nose dive in 2007 and 2008 so did the construction industry. Many of the qualified contractors and subcontractors closed shop, retired, or moved to other areas of the U.S. What I am seeing now is a shortage of good qualified subs which is forcing a combination of price increases and potential delays. Smaller builders and remodeling contractors are scattering to find subs that aren't married to the "big" builders doing the large scale subdivisions and production jobs. Many of the subs working on these large projects don't have the time or labor to work on smaller projects like a custom home or remodel so they bid and price the project ridiculously high. The old "supply and demand" scenario. . This is a pattern that always seems to go hand in hand with a recovery in the area. Often a lot of talented workers will break free and go into business for themselves opening up the market for smaller qualified specialty subcontractors. This helps to level things back out.
Keep the above in mind when hiring a General Contractor to build your home, renovate your condo, or remodel your kitchen or bath. Does the contractor typically do single family homes, custom homes, high end, or are they a production builder doing tract housing or possibly specializing in high rises? Do they understand your price point to budget as in are they selling you a $30k appliance package when all your really want and need is around $8k? Do they listen to what you want? Contractors will give you an allowance for IKEA cabinets when you thought you were getting all wood. And....then hit you with a $20k change order. Ask around, ask other contractors, and pay attention to communication. Don't get "yesed" to death by someone who's not paying attention to what you want and need. After all, you are the customer who is paying for the work being done.