ASAP! Yesterday! A month ago! Ok, let’s qualify that statement. If you’re considering a remodel – of at least a whole room in your home – and you want it completed in the next 12 months, it’s NOT too early to get planning.

Before we go further, what level of remodel are we talking about? By remodel we mean a new kitchen, bath, basement or something more substantial. Updates or replacement of components on a smaller scale, like new paint or flooring or countertops will not require nearly as much lead time and planning.

So why do you need to contact a remodeler so far in advance? It definitely doesn’t take us an entire year to plan and build a project, but six months from first contact to the end of the project is very, very common. And we’ll go through the planning process earlier if a home owner wants to. But what takes so long? Are we just extremely slow? It only takes a weekend on TV, right? While we’re not slow, we are very planning oriented and spend plenty of time on the front end so that the production of the project goes smoothly.

There are seven distinct phases to our remodeling process that each take time.

Initial Contact – When you first contact us, we’ll do a phone consultation and if we’re a good fit for each other, schedule our first meeting in your home. During the meeting in your home we’ll discuss the size and scope of your project in more detail and enter into a planning agreement. Time: 2 weeks because neither of us has a wide-open schedule.

Planning – During the planning stage, a designer will meet in your home, take pictures and lots of measurements. More measurements than you ever imagined! She’ll design several options based upon your wants, present these options and collaborate with you on a final design. Sometimes this takes one meeting, often it takes two, and other times it takes multiple meetings depending on the complexity of the project and how decisive and available the clients are. Time: 3 weeks.

Availability to Make Selections – The selection process is the stage during which you choose the finishes also known as the FUN STAGE for most people! Some finishes are chosen in our office and some at supplier showrooms. Again, this stage is very dependent upon your availability to meet and your ability to make decisions. There is no right or wrong speed to work through this, you move at whatever speed you find most comfortable. Some people like to choose all finishes in a single day, some like to spread it out over several outings. Some people make decisions and stick with them, others like to reassess. Time: 3 weeks.

Site Visit – During the selection stage, we’ll schedule at least one site visit with our remodeling specialists, electrician, plumber, HVAC team and any other specialists who will work on the project. This visit allows us to identify challenges ahead of time so that production runs smoothly. Time: During the selection stage.

Gather Estimates, Assemble Contract, Sign Contract – Now that the design and selections are finalized, we need to get estimates from each supplier to create your fixed price contract. We typically allocate two weeks for this process because suppliers are busy, we’re busy, you’re busy and we all need a little time to pull this information together. Time: 2 weeks.

Order Materials – Once you’ve signed the contract and three days have passed, we can order materials. Cabinets have the longest lead time of four to eight weeks … and they are worth the wait. During this time, we’re putting together your production schedule, accumulating materials and meeting with you to go over our pre-production checklist. Time: 6 weeks.

Build – For a kitchen, bath or basement, we estimate six weeks from the time we begin demolition to the final walk through. During this time, you’ll appreciate all the time spent planning your project. Time: 6 weeks.

The final, final stage is where you enjoy and show off your new space!

Ready to start the process? Just contact us and we’ll be in touch. Even if you’re not ready to remodel just yet, we’re always available to answer your questions and we have kitchen and bath remodeling seminars six times a year. Sign up for our next seminar here.

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