I am going to deviate a bit from what I had planned to write about; instead, I am going to rant for a moment. My wife and I are building a garage at our home. When we bought our home it had a carport in name only; it was something the original owner had cobbled together. We never dared to park a car beneath it, and we used it only to store firewood. Our fears were well placed because a few years ago it collapsed under the weight of a heavy snow.
So, after making several other changes to our home, my wife and I decided to add a garage. We have snow on the ground for nearly 7 months of the year and we thought it would be nice not to have to constantly dig the cars out after a snowstorm. We priced several options and we elected to follow the counsel of a friend. We did this to save money, which is important to us all. Our friend recommended we have his friend draw up plans, and we paid for those, but then found that our friend’s friend was not an engineer so he could not provide the necessary engineer stamp to the plans. No other engineer would stamp the plans so we had to have them redrafted, at additional cost, of course.
We then submitted the plans to the local building department, but we had failed to have a soil test done which we now had to obtain. This set us back in time and in money. Finally, all was ready, but our recommended concrete contractor obtained a building permit from the wrong office, obtaining it from the nearby city, instead of the county. Another delay. Three months after the project began we finally had the foundation and two walls poured; however, it is now so late in the season that we may not get the garage in before the snow comes. All of this could have been avoided if we had hired a reputable contractor to oversee the project. Because we did not we are behind and may not see fruition of this project until the spring.
I see this often in the legal world. In an age where information is freely available, people too often think they can do complex work themselves. They then are like my wife and I who have ended up spending more money because we were unwilling to pay more initially.
I am currently working a case in which my client contacted me to do the work originally but later changed his mind. Five years later I am fixing, at greater cost, the mistakes that were made. As my wife and I have learned ourselves: some things are best left to those who have the training and skill to do a job right the first time.
If we can help you we will; if you do not need our help we will tell you, but find out before you dig in too deep.