Writing checks for your remodeling project is never fun. The amounts can be staggering and there's always the concern that maybe you didn't get all the value you were due. Besides, every check written means you have less leverage over your contractor. Payday gives contractors the jitters, too. Although pros like to get paid, homeowners often save up their frustration until check-writing time and then unload it. Both of you can avoid this stress by agreeing on a fair payment structure. Then schedule separate progress meetings to review any concerns or complaints you have—no reason to further complicate these meetings with check writing.