Reality TV Show Idea: The Life of a Remodeling Contractor

DIY shows and home improvement topics have become vastly popular during the last ten years. People take great pride in their homes, and love to improve them. One question that always arises is when to hire a professional, and when to do-it-yourself.

A reality TV show based on the life of a Remodeling Contractor would be eye-opening to many. A day in the life of a contractor usually begins at 7 AM, when the crews are lined up for the day. Blueprints are discussed, engineering and architectural issues are brought up, and then everyone disperses to their respective jobs.

Making such a show interesting is the fact that nothing ever goes as planned! It is common for a contractor building a new addition to discover termite damage that means extra work, architectural problems such as roof lines drawn wrong, little known areas of the code being brought up when an inspector comes by, etc.

Topping all that off is the customer who always changes his mind about where he wants the walls, what kind of trim he wants, and so forth.

A typical small contractor will have 5-10 jobs running at once, with foreman managing each job. In many cases, a contractor is called out to fix a job started by a homeowner who didn’t have the experience or knowledge to finish what he started.

Some examples of jobs our company has running, and issues that would enlighten the Home Depot -frequenting crowds are:

1) A second story loft addition in which the architect drew in no supports for the highest part of the roof, put the roof lines in the wrong places, and only fixes one problem at a time so the homeowner has to pay additionally for each visit he makes.

2) A mother-in-law cottage that will be the new home of a 75-year old lady who doesn’t want to clean her large home anymore and is selling it to her son. She is thrilled with every beam that goes up.

3) A kitchen extension for an older couple with a finite budget in which the city called for engineering work that usually costs $4k, we were able to do most of it and get it signed for her for $500. The crew is now forming for a concrete pour for new footings.

4) A “high-tech” bathroom with an intricate tile design on the showers and walls

5) The remodel of a rental unit in which the owner and tenant continually disagree as to the quality of materials used. The tenant is a close relative of the owner, complicating the situation.

These issues and jobs are all human interest scenarios, and are as much about the people involved as they are the actual construction. Such a reality TV show would help people to understand their local contractor, and the complexity of the jobs as well as people interactions.

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