Kitchens By Design, Inc.


I have a plan and a budget. Now what do I do?


Episode 3. I Have my plan and my budget. Now what do I do?

So you've done your homework. You've come up with ideas and a plan and a reasonable budget for the project. Now the question is "Who do you get to help you put this all together".

It definitely isn't Uncle Mike who comes over now and then to fix a leaky faucet or help paint the bathroom. You need a proven renovation firm or professional in the kitchen industry who has put together projects like yours.

Renovation companies come in all shapes and sizes. Some will conceptualize and design but will then recommend you to a contractor for the actual remodel portion of your project. Others will conceptualize, execute and complete your entire project. The latter call themselves design/build companies. They work with you in the beginning to establish your budget and play a major role in the entire process from start to finish.

That means they will meet with you to gather all your ideas for the space along with your personal expressions of style related to the project and and interpret them by coming back to you with a design and budget. It may take more then one meeting, depending on the scope of the project, to put all the details together , but when it's time for the final presentation, the hope is that your design/renovation specialist has captured it all and provided you with a solid vision for the new space.

Finding the right professional to do all this can be arduous. You can scour local publications, search the internet for local companies, contact the National Kitchen and Bath Association for guidance but the best pipeline for finding your perfect renovation partner is to ask family, friends, neighbors and colleagues if they are aware of companies that do what you are looking for. There is a strong chance that someone knows a company or professional who has done this work in the area and has a strong reputation for quality. Check the internet for companies in your area that perform the kind of work your hoping to have done on your home.

As you being your search, here are some important things you should be looking for in a professional renovation company.

A. Be sure that the company has solid experience. Young companies can be highly motivated but not experienced enough to know the many renovation pitfalls that can befuddle even the most experienced company.

B. Make sure the company has all the prerequisite licenses and insurances. State and local building codes must be followed at all times during your renovation. Don't get fooled by "don't worry it is good enough" Uninsured workers can cause irreparable harm if accidents occur and you have no one to hold accountable.

C. Be comfortable with the key individuals who will deliver your project. After all you will be spending weeks even months with these people so you need to have a comfort level with the way they conduct business, the way they communicate with you and the way they keep you informed.

D. Make sure the company you deal with has very clear financial rules and consistently updates you on the money trail. Everything should be in writing including your "Terms of Payment" for the project

These are a few things for you to think about. the best projects are those that have everyone working on the same page. Finding solutions for the inevitable problems that will arise must be a group effort. The best projects are always when people look to each other for support and guidance. It makes having that glass of wine at the end of the job so much more enjoyable. Next Episode. How Do I Survive the Craziness of Remodeling?