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PDMi is committed to providing pithy information through our E-bits blog and we hope you find these articles useful.

  • Writer's pictureBrad Bollman

As spring break quickly approaches (many of you may already be home from spring break), I couldn’t help but think about spring break road trips. Our family is set to take off early Saturday morning for a 5 day road trip through Kentucky and the mountains of Tennessee. Thankfully my kids are old enough these days that we don’t have the dread of long road trips with little ones. In the old days, we were always told “good luck” traveling that amount of time with two little kids. Back then my wife and I did very well because we planned ahead. We made sure they had movies downloaded from “insert your favorite streaming service here”, arts and crafts along with lot of snacks of course! The hours typically went quickly with no major incidents or melt-downs.

Why did the road trips, that had every chance of going badly, go so well? The answer is “we prepared before we started”. Just like all building projects, if you don’t prepare before you get started, the chance of the project going well greatly decreases.

Three questions to answer before you start your next building project:

  • What Do I Value? Wants vs. needs must be balanced on every project. The answer to another question “Does it bring value to the project?” will determine which want or need stays or goes.

  • Where am I Compromising? Compromise is not a bad word, it is only bad when you compromise and didn’t know it. As you prioritize the “value added items” on your list, compromise may need to take place. That is ok because you are doing it purposefully.

  • When Do I Need the Project Completed? Having an overall schedule with milestone dates will keep the project on time and your stress level under control.

We always had fun & built memories along the way because we prepared for the trip. I knew what I valued, which was time with my wife and kids, and understood there would be compromise. The kids normally had all the snacks eaten before we crossed the first state line, but the trips still went smoothly!

Let us help you prepare for your next project. Give me a call; we would like to take the trip with you.

  • Writer's pictureBrad Bollman

In the world of comic book characters, seeing through walls and above ceilings can be common place. But in Realville, engineers and architects can only dream about having the super power of “X-Ray Vision”.

We do a lot of renovation projects and I have learned over the years there is one thing that is a constant, you never know what you may find behind that piece of drywall. Many times we are called out to a jobsite to inspect the existing conditions of a wall or a header beam after the drywall has been removed. It is always the hope of the client that there are no major surprises once destructive testing is complete. Sometimes we get lucky and sometimes we do don’t.

Here are a few tips to manage those existing details that cannot be seen…

  • Produce As-Built documents – At the end of your next project, be sure to have As-Built documents produced. It will give a great starting point for future renovation projects.

  • Have a contingency account – The project budget for every renovation project should always have a contingency account to cover the cost of unseen conditions. Be clear about who manages the account and who has the authority to spend it.

  • Execute Fair & Solid Contracts – Understand all contracts between an Owner and a Contractor are about Risk and Reward. Be strategic about who holds the risk (the owner or the contractor) because where the risk is, the contingency money will be.

We may not have X-Ray vision, but we can help you through your renovation project. Give us a call; we would love to talk about how to make your next project a success.

  • Writer's pictureBrad Bollman

We received a call from a client in June of 2020. As you may recall, our world had a few unknowns going on at that time. This specific client happens to own a large warehouse and he had a request from one of his existing tenants (a large national brand) to add on to the existing facility to accommodate additional product storage. The additional product storage was needed due to it being a very “hot commodity” at that time. We rolled up our sleeves and got to work on preliminary layouts and design, working alongside the warehouse owner and his tenant on what exactly they needed. It took a few months of planning to arrive at a solution that the tenant was happy with and would meet their needs.

Once the planning was complete and the tenant was happy, PDMi was ready to start design documents so that we could get competitive bids from the sub-contractors in order to break ground before it got too late in the fall. This is when the project slowed quite a bit. As I mentioned above, the tenant was a large national brand and there were many “layers” of approvals needed, above that of the local warehouse manager, in order to move the project forward. Needless to say, our window for breaking ground before winter was missed and the project never got started until late in the spring of 2021. Due to the setback, the project is now finally just WEEKS away from completion, but the product that the tenant so badly needed space to store is no longer such a “hot commodity”. It is still in demand, but not the way it was in 2020.

At PDMi, we often talk about planning, designing and implementing a project, all done in that sequence. The moral of the story is that there can always be outside factors that slow the process, even when you make your best effort to follow it precisely. Back in June of 2020, we did not anticipate a completion date of May 2022, but here we are ready to deliver a great product despite the schedule delays. The tenant will still get great use out of the new space, despite it being later than the local warehouse manager might have hoped.

If you’ve got an upcoming project that needs planned, designed or implemented, give us a call – we’d love to be part of your team.

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