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What is Project Management?

Monday, July 27, 2020   /   by AJ Shepard

What is Project Management?



Trent Werner:
Cool. Okay. Project management with myself, Trent Werner.

Trent Werner:
So, the overall process of project management usually comes in the order of you do the scope of work, see what needs to be done to whatever project that you are going to be managing, determine the order of operations for the work being performed, schedule bids from contractors for the scope of work that you already established, and then schedule the work to be completed.

Trent Werner:
During the scope of work, you're walking through the property, determining what work needs to be done. For projects that you maybe live in or occupy one unit, this is where you could ask yourself if you're able and willing and have the time to do some of the stuff yourself to save some money. So, personally, I ask myself, what can I do myself to make the renovation of the project less expensive?

Trent Werner:
This is a good idea or a good time to figure out how long this project may run and how long it'll take to be completed, and then I always document everything with photos. Personally, I like the before and after photos, but it's also a good way to see or remind yourself what needs to be done, what's already been done, all that fun stuff.

Trent Werner:
And then, the order of operations. I started on the exterior work. If there is no exterior work that needs to be done, then just go straight to number two. Roofing, gutters are usually pretty easy to get done first, and then stairs and decking/siding, I think those can kind of be interchanged. If you are having exciting work done and there are exterior stairs, typically, those two contractors, if they're separate entities, are going to have to work together. So, they know how the stairs are going to be attached to the exterior of the building how to work around each other.

Trent Werner:
And then, paint. The exterior is typically the last one. And then, landscaping. I did landscaping first on a project that I'm working on right now but going back, I wish I would have done landscaping last just because there's a lot of contractors and people and debris that's going to get thrown around, especially if exterior work is being done. Usually, it's a good idea to get everything cleaned up at the end.

Trent Werner:
And then, interior work. Obviously, you're going to want to start with a demo. If it needs paint, then I would recommend paint and electrical. If it is like a bigger electrical job then, like new electrical throughout, obviously do that before you paint, but if it's just a classic turnover, paint, any electrical problems, flooring... I do flooring after paint so that painters don't have to worry about taping off the floor and making sure that they don't have to be careful of the floor because it's going to get ripped out anyway.

Trent Werner:
And then, any of the final touches. Hooking up new appliances, light fixtures, and stuff will already be done because electrical is done, but new appliances, toilets, door handles, knobs, whatever it may be.

Trent Werner:
And then, after you've kind of laid out your timeline of everything, this is when you want to start getting bids. All these steps can be done intertwined. So, as you're creating the order of operations, you can be scheduling people to come to give you bids. I always recommend three to five bids for each job that's being done. So, if you need a new roof, get three to five roofers out there to give you bids, so you can kind of gauge what a reasonable price is. Determine what the contractor will provide the best value for you. I know there's a lot of big contractors that can do a full rehab themselves, roof siding, stairs, paint, all that stuff, but they're going to charge you an arm and a leg for it. So, typically I wouldn't recommend that. I would recommend, if you're trying to keep it cost-effective, piecing together all these different contractors.

Trent Werner:
In some cases, it might be a better idea for you to provide material that's going to be needed. That way, it's already there, and then you just pay someone for the labor and time of actually making sure that those materials get put up properly.

Trent Werner:
Make sure the contractors are legitimate and know what they're doing. Because if you find someone that may be really well-priced, but they come in and end up causing more problems than doing good, then you're going to have to hire someone else to come to clean up their mess. Then, that just prolongs the process altogether.

Trent Werner:
Then, repeat this process for flooring, paint, electrical, exterior work, whatever it may be. Just make sure you get your bids and find out who you're going to want to work with.

Trent Werner:
And then, schedule the contractors. You want to schedule them in a way that they're not going to be overlapping each other. If the flooring is trying to go in, you're not going to want to paint while the flooring is going in. Or, if electrical is there, you don't want him doing his stuff while the painters are trying to spray everything. So, schedule them out. Give them a couple of days to do their thing, and then get the next person in there instead of being right on top of each other. If you have exterior work going on, typically, that's not a big problem. You could have exterior work going on at the same time as interior work.

Trent Werner:
And then, keep them on task. That's kind of a battle that I've run into myself. I have all these expectations of jobs getting done. I've talked with these people, and they said, "Oh yeah, it'll be done here or this day." I go check it out, and it's not done. So, I would just recommend constantly checking up on your projects and making sure that things that were said that they were going to get done are getting done in the right manner, and they're getting done correctly.

Trent Werner:
And then, just making sure that you're double-checking your work. I have had to have a couple of contractors just come back out and finish what they started because I don't know if they missed it or they thought I wasn't going to notice or whatever. It's important to double-check and have those conversations if something isn't done to your standards with these people. Maybe it was a misunderstanding, or maybe they just missed it or whatever. It's better to get to the bottom of those issues earlier than prolonging them and causing your project to go longer. So yeah, that's project management.

Speaker 2:
Very cool. Nice, Trent. Question for you. What do you find the best ways to hire contractors or find them?

Trent Werner:
Honestly, a lot of the contractors are referral-based. If you don't have that luxury, I've also found contractors off of Craigslist. The only thing about Craigslist is you're going to want to make sure that they are who they say they are and if they have their license and bonded and insured and all that. You want their CCB license and making sure that you're checking before you just hire them to do work if they're not qualified.

Trent Werner:
Is that it?

Speaker 3:
That answered my question as well.

Trent Werner:
Cool.

Uptown Properties
Chris Shepard
3526 SW Troy
Portland, OR 97219
503-941-0276
Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation
Mike Maier
5410 SW Macadam Ave, Ste 100
Portland, OR 97239
503-545-9879

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