Plan Ahead to Achieve Your Dream Remodel
Experience tells us that if you plan a remodel ahead of time you have a better chance of achieving your dream. So gather your ideas and information, and follow this project planning system that really works:
1. Start with the creative process.
Write down what you want to accomplish. Collect photos, brochures and samples. Set up an organization system for your project with notes, receipts, warranties, etc. Make sketches and draw floor plans. Research products on the internet and visit remodel forums.
2. Gather Information
Obtain a survey of your property showing other structures, utilities and wells. If you belong to a Homeowners Association, inquire about rules and restrictions. And visit your City or County’s Building or Zoning Departments.
3. Select your project team
Select an architect or draftsman, interview contractors, and now is the time to consider interior and/or landscape designers, etc. Ask for referrals from your friends, neighbors and family. Be specific when answering questions about your project.
4. Meet with your team and finalize the details.
Set up a meeting with your chosen contractor, and/or designer, to talk about your project. Using your preliminary drawings, work with your team to coordinate ideas, hear comments, discuss prices, voice expectations, coordinate and confirm work schedules.
5. Negotiate the contracts.
Include in the contract; the commencement and completion date, the total contract price, payment terms and general conditions. Do not sign any contract until it has your list of specifications and any other information that you deem important. Consider having an attorney review your contracts.
6. Finally - start the project.
It may be inconvenient, but if the owner is on-site, construction will move forward in a timely and cost effective manner. You will be there to answer questions. You will be there to make sure that the project meets your standards of quality. And, you will be there to hold all involved - accountable.
The steps above will afford you the opportunity to take an active part in planning your remodel project. The learning process and the information you gather will increase your potential for a professional job, completed on time and on budget.