Posted on: 30 June 2018
If you have bought a fixer upper which has certainly seen its better days, then you may want to completely demolish the building and create something more saleable in its place. After all, if the plot of land is valuable and it's in a great location, you need to maximise your investment. While you cannot wait to begin your new construction, why should you exercise some restraint before planning the actual demolition?
What's the Risk?
Much will depend on what is known about the building in question. It's certainly possible to order a straightforward and comprehensive demolition in some cases, but in many situations it's not. As an example, the contractors you bring in may not fully understand the potential dangers that may be hidden inside the property. They don't want to run the risk of releasing chemicals or toxic components into the air and there may also be a risk that something could explode if they're not careful. In these cases, they'll want to engage a process of selective demolition instead.
One of the biggest risks here is, of course, asbestos. It's likely that this property is an older home and may not have been renovated at any stage during its life. There is an increasing likelihood of asbestos here and it's not always easy to determine where it is. Remember, this is your property and you are ultimately liable for any breach of code or regulation if you release asbestos fibres into the air.
You should also think of salvage in a situation like this. Certainly, the house may be beyond any reasonable repair, but there may be a wealth of recyclable components inside and some fixtures and fittings could be reused. Don't just confine this potential to the landfill but offset it against your total project cost.
If you're not sure how to assess value, then it's a good idea to bring in an expert to help you identify opportunities and segregate any recyclable components. This should begin before selective demolition, but you may call a temporary hold as demolition proceeds. This will allow you to check everything from time to time. It's best if you fully communicate your plan to the demolition contractors before the work begins so that they can stage according to your needs.
Once you decide that you are going ahead with house demolition, gather as much information as you can to give to the contractor. You will need to be diligent not only to recover potentially valuable components and complete the job efficiently, but also to make sure that all workers on site are as safe as possible.Share