Saturday, September 5, 2015

Condo Fit-Out: Hiring A Contractor

Things you need to do before hiring a contractor:

1. Background Check

Check if the contractor is licensed and registered and has a good reputation. Interview the contractor or their previous clients regarding their works and if possible ask for some pictures of their previous or on-going projects.

2. Seek for referrals

Talk to your friend, family, relatives or neighbors and ask if they know a contractor who would fit on the project.

3. Meet the contractor

Meet them personally and face to face to discuss the project. Let them know what you want, ask questions and if they have any suggestions or what they think about the project.

4. Get Bids

Ask the selected contractors for quotations or estimation of the project. Break down the cost of materials, labor and other expenses. Communication is very important so before deciding, make sure you are very comfortable with his personality, communication and skills. A bad contractor will tell you they don't want you visiting the place while they're working. A good contractor will advise you to make a surprise visit to see if they are doing a great job.

5. Request for a contract

Timetable, details of labor and materials should be included in the contract

6. Discuss the payment

Hire a contractor that you're comfortable with. Do not hire a contractor that is very desperate to get the bid of the project because they want money from you. The priority of the contractor is the customer's satisfaction and the outcome of the project and not on how much money will he earn and get from you.

We get the service of Uni Connections Enterprises. Uni De Velez is the Managing Director and a licensed contractor. He's easy to deal with and I am very comfortable discussing what we wanted on this project. He guaranteed us he will always be there everyday monitoring the progress and suggested to do a surprise visit for us to make sure that they are really doing a great job. He always sends us reports and pictures everyday of what they have accomplished. If you need a trusted contractor,  I would highly recommend Uni Connections Enterprises. Please check my next entry for the before and after pictures. Contact Number: 0916 284 3772. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Condo Fit-Out: In-Progress Shots

To give you an idea on how we are maximizing the 22 sqm studio type unit and make it a 1 bedroom loft type unit. Here’s in-progress shot on how they built the loft framing and stairs.


Painted all Tubular steel with Redox red oxide anti rust paint

They used anchor bolt for the loft frame foundation (not on the picture). Below is the frame of the loft.

Stair stringer

Stairs railings

Loft railings

Next entry is about hiring a Good and Trusted Contractor and wait for my BEFORE and AFTER pictures.

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Condo Fit-Out: Scope of Work

Here's the Scope of Work/Material:

1. Ceiling Installation, cove lighting
2. Super White Tile installation in the living area and kitchen floor
3. Vinyl wood plank flooring in the second floor (Loft)
4. Stairs
5. Closet cabinet and drawers underneath the stairs.
6.. Electrical lighting and accent cove light
7. Kitchen sink, counter top,  hanging and cabinet installation
8. T&B wall and floor tiles installation
9. Fixtures
10. Waterproofing
11. Steel bars and anchor bolt (Loft Frame and railing)
12. Overall painting

Total cost of project.. tantananaaaaaaaaaan

Abangan ang susunod na kabanata

Related Post:
Condo Fit-Out: Tile Flooring
Condo Fit-Out: Requirements

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Condo Fit-Out: Requirements

For the requirements, you need to ask your building admin and engineer before you can start renovating your condo. As mentioned on my previous post, we are planning to have a small loft or mezzanine to maximize the space and because we have a high ceiling.

Requirements are the following:

Architectural drawings

You need to submit architectural drawings by a licensed architect. This includes; floor plan, electrical plan, plumbing works, electrical load, cabinet installation, kitchen, T&B, ceiling installation and bedroom. We waited for the approval of the building engineer because we need to use steel bars and anchor bolt for the mezzanine. Engineer said, we are the first unit owner who proposed such plan and design, wala pa daw naglakas ng loob mag palagay ng mezzanine sa studio unit unless designed talaga yung condo na lagyan ng mezzanine.

Construction bond

Building admin required us to pay 50k and only 38k will be returned after the renovation has been completed.  Ang tanong, saan mapupunta ang 12k, madaming sinabi na kesyo ganito kesyo ganyan, may bayad yung pagbabantay nila at marami pang iba. Mabigat ang 12k pero kung poproblemahin ko yan sasakit lang ulo ko at baka hindi pa matuloy tong project na to.

Application Form

It’s an application form for the working permit. This will be provided by the building admin and we need to fill it out with the scope of work, name of contractor and the date of completion.


Contractors All Risk Insurance for construction projects consisting of protection against loss or damage, injury or property damage. We paid Ph2, 648 then submitted the following to the insurance company: Scope of work, Bill of Materials, Total cost of fit-out, working days, date of completion and complete name and address of the owner. Once processed, they will send the contract with the receipt via email. Then you need to submit it with the Application form to the building admin.

Once everything is good, the building engineer and foreman will meet the unit owner and contractor for the briefing then you may claim the working permit to start your condo fit-out or renovation.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Condo Fit-Out: Tile Flooring

It’s been almost 3 years since my last post about tiles. I just discovered that there are many types of Tile flooring. But the most commonly used is ceramic and granite.

Ceramic Tile is made from red or brown clay and other materials. This is only recommended for interior walls and floors but it is not advisable for kitchen floors and bathroom. BAKIT? Kase ansabe, ceramic tile absorbs too much water. Ano nangyayari sa paso ng halaman kapag laging basa at hindi nasisinagan ng araw? Tinutubuan ng lumot so in short, yung likod ng tile nyo may lumot and eventually magkakaron ng monster na unti unting lalabas kapag nagkabutas na ang grout.

Porcelain Tile is also made from ceramic fired at a very high temperatures. This is recommended for indoor and outdoor use because of the extra density. It is more durable, harder and more impervious to moisture. Ano ang impervious? Ang ibig sabihin, not allowing fluid to pass through. Code nga pala B1a is porcelain, B1b semi porcelain then the rest ceramic, yan ang sabe ni ateng sa Wilcon.

Granite is a natural stone produced from natural materials. It is nearly impervious and recommended for high traffic areas. Meaning, kapag laging dinadaan or may mga mabibigat na gamit, it is recommended to use granite.

If you are following this blog, last January 2013 na turn over ang condo unit namin. It is a bare unit, wala kahit ano parang box lang na puro alikabok. Nakatengga sya for 2 years and 6 months, so imagine mas makapal ang alikabok at insektong nanirahan sa loob ng condo. At sana walang multong pansamantalang nanirahan dun. Last July naghanap hanap kami ng contructor at humingi ng quotation. What we have is a 22sqm studio unit with a high ceiling. To maximize the space, we plan it to have a small loft or mezzanine for the bedroom. Just to give you an idea how limited and small the space is tignan nyo nalang yung picture. Ganyan lang sya as in maliit na box.

May napili na nga pala kaming contractor, sa mga may planong magpa furnish or fit out ng condo.. just follow my blog para magkaron kayo ng idea kung ano ano mga  dapat gawin at para masubaybayan kung ano kalalabasan after ng lahat.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Lemon Juice Diet

(Image From Wikipedia)

I am very desperate to lose weight after giving birth. I used to be 120lbs before I got married then when I was pregnant I gained a lot of weight. I am having difficulty going up and down the stairs. I get depressed whenever I see myself into the mirror, I am very huge. I tried Insanity and Focus T25 for a month but it injured my knee. It damaged my knee pad and based from the MRI result I have Grade 4 of Chondromalacia  patella.

Chondromalacia patella is also known as the runner’s knee, it is a condition where the knee pad deteriorates or damage. I went to The Medical City and they offered me a medicine that needs to be injected directly on my knee and it is worth P20, 000.  Told the doctor I don’t have much money and if I have I still need to look for a cheaper alternative. My brother in law recommends a doctor from Sta. Anna Manila. We went to Sta. Anna and meet the doctor. He offered me a medicine from Germany and need to be injected three times on my knee. One session was worth 3,500 and 3 session was worth 10,500. I need to come back to his clinic every other day for the injection.  After the session he gave me prescription to take Genacol Collagen once a day and Carnicor L-Carnatine twice a day.

Genacol Collagen, based from the doctor, it will reduces the pain and will regenerate the cartilage and ligaments of my knee. The Carnicor is to lose weight and boost metabolism. Because of my condition, I am not allowed to exercise. I love walking but no long walk for now but if I need to, doctor said to don’t forget to pause if my knee hurt.  Last October 2014 I was 163lbs. Last November someone introduced me the lemon detox every morning. I need to squeeze half lemon to warm water, 1 tbsp. Apple Cider Vinegar (I use Bragg), and 1 tbsp. honey.

After a week of detox, I lose 11lbs (152lbs). Isn’t it amazing?! No changes with my eating habit, I still eat rice and Jollibee yum burger. Last December I am in no mood of checking my weight I am afraid to see that I gained again. This January someone introduced me the Cayenne pepper and Turmeric. I just need to add it on my warm lemon. I love adding turmeric on my food especially on my rice. Now, I can’t believe I am 145lbs. Wow, no exercise, no walking, and no jogging and normal eating habit but still I am losing weight. Thanks to the lemon detox it is really effective for me. 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Cheap Eye Glasses

I started wearing glasses when I was 13 due to Myopic Astigmatism and that was 18 years ago. Myopic Astigmatism is one or both eyes are nearsighted and what I experienced was I always get dizzy and having difficulty seeing at night. Last 2009 I went to EO and have my eye checked and get a new frame and lens. Frame was worth 2,000 plus 5,000 for multi coated, UV protection and transition photochromic lens, the total was P7, 000, expensive right?! I am very careful with my eyeglasses and make sure I won’t scratch it. Unfortunate event happen, I was held up last 2011 and they took all my things. I need to have a new eyeglass. Went back to EO and told them I just want to have a simple frame and lens for my astigmatism, no multi coated and photochromic, I only want protection from UV and computer.  Frame was worth 2,500 and the lens with UV and radiation protection was worth 2,000 total of P4, 500.

(My eyeglass from EO worth P7,000, paumanhin sa taray look kase stolen shot hahaha)

This year my shift starts at 3:00 PM and thought of having transition photochromic lens. This time I went to Sarrabia and told them what I need. Lens for astigmatism was worth 800 no multi-coating, no photochromic and protection from UV and computer. Then went to a Korean optical shop (I forgot the name), they have a very cheap frame worth 500 but simple lens was expensive worth 1,200. Last Friday I went to Paterno in Quiapo and look for Reshma Optical shop. I told Reshma (the owner) I have astigmatism and I need protection for UV, computer and sun. Lens with multi coated, UV and computer protection is worth 500. If I want it the transition photochromic, need to add 500. They also offered the new type of photochromic lens; it's much darker like a sun glasses once expose to sun and for that I need to add 1,000. I don’t need a new frame because it’s still in good shape, so I just paid 1,000. My new lens for astigmatism has multi-coated with UV and computer protection and transition photochromic. That is very cheap right, compared to a simple lens from Sarrabia and Korean optical shop. 

(My new lens from Quiapo)