Beginning contractors often make the mistake of pumping up a customer’s early expectations, only to discover unresolved issues and problems later that cause the cost of the job to change, most often in a northerly direction. This is especially true of bathroom remodels, where much of the work is hidden behind walls and under floors, and where the number and variety of product choices is overwhelming.

To avoid problems, it’s important that during the initial site visit you work through a of the common problems that typically plague bathroom remodels, especially when it comes to investigating existing piping and fixtures. Until you’re comfortable with this kind of detective work, ask your plumbing sub to visit the site with you. You’ll look...

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