Our Design/Build Process: An In-Depth Look
Remodeling part, or all, of your home is a big decision. From budget to timing to everything in between, you want to make sure your money is well spent and that you love the end result. That’s why it’s critical that you feel confident and comfortable with your construction partner and the remodeling process. Here’s an in-depth look at our proven three-phased design/build process.
Our Design/Build Process – Phase 1. Discuss
This initial phase of our design/build process is typically broken up into 4 parts:
- Initial phone or video call
- In-home meeting and feasibility discussion
- Showroom meeting
- Transparent budgeting and costs discussion
Introductory phone call
On the initial phone or video call, we’ll introduce ourselves, talk about your project, and cover any high-level feasibility concerns. Our aim is to understand your goals and objectives for the remodel and to see if we are a good fit to help you accomplish them. We’ll review your space via online real estate photos or by video and discuss your objectives for budget, design, and timeline.
During the in-home meeting, we’ll take a closer look at the space that will be remodeled or designated for a new addition, take some preliminary measurements, make some initial recommendations on how to best achieve your project goals, and go over general project costs. We’ll also walk around your property with you to check for any structural issues that can be seen with the naked eye that may affect your project.
At this point, we may recommend a feasibility study to help clarify any project concerns, we’ll start to refine the budget that will meet your needs, and we’ll look at questions that may have arisen about your home’s structure. Finding out answers to these issues ahead of time can save on project costs and potential delays later on.
We’ll also talk about your overall design style or aesthetic. Is it more traditional? Maybe you lean more toward a modern look and feel. Is it somewhere in between? Whatever your style, we want to gain a solid understanding of what you like and don’t like so we can design a space that you’ll truly enjoy.
Next, we’ll invite you to our showroom to look at finishes and discuss design more in-depth, with samples you can look at and compare.
Finally, we’ll discuss and fine-tune your specific project budget based on what we’ve talked about and go over our pricing model in clear and easy to understand terms. We’ll examine ways to reach your remodeling objectives with the budget you have in mind, and we’ll be upfront with you if we’re concerned your budget range doesn’t align with your project goals. We can also talk about various financing options if you have questions around how to help fund your remodel.
Our Design/Build Process – Phase 2. Design
The next phase in our design/build process focuses on detailed design. It includes several steps, from initial concepting all the way through to breaking ground on construction. Our goal is ensure you’re happy with the way your space is going to look and function before construction gets underway.
The As-built survey is the first major step in our design process. It involves taking very precise measurements of your space as it was constructed, as well as the location and dimensions of any proposed improvements.
During the survey, we’ll examine how your home was built, determine if there may be anything that could cause issues down the road, and test for potentially hazardous materials.
The As-built survey includes:
- Examining framing in a crawl space
- Uncovering a footing to determine the size
- Scanning the wall to determine where electric wires or framing members are
- Cutting a hole in the drywall or removing heat registers to see inside a wall/floor/ceiling to determine framing members and sizes
We’ll spend at least several hours—and sometimes a whole day—investigating your home, lot, and space to gather all the information we need to create some initial concepts.
Completing the survey helps avoid unwelcome surprises later on that could result in expensive overruns and unexpected delays.
Typical duration for survey and initial concepts: 2 weeks
Initial concept meeting
Following the As-built Survey, we move on to the initial concept meeting. We’ll typically present 2-3 design and layout options for your space and then we’ll work with you to determine the one that best fits you and your project. Part of this meeting will also include going over initial product selections to help get started on sourcing some of the materials we’ll need for your project. These selection samples will cover things like:
Then, we’ll continue to revise our concept drawings based on your input.
Typical time to complete concept revisions: 2 weeks
Follow up concept meeting
After we complete our design revisions, we’ll meet with you again to review them and finalize the concepts. For a kitchen remodel, this would include things like cabinet style and quantity, as well as placement of an island. For a new bathroom, it would cover placement and size of the shower, tile options, vanity location, and more.
We’ll also discuss fixtures and finishes for the space in detail, then we’ll present finish samples to you as well as unique pieces that we’ve specially collected just for your project. Plus, we’ll suggest plumbing and lighting fixtures for you and connect you with outside showrooms where you can see them in person.
The goal by the end of this stage in our design/build process is to get our renderings to match the final product selections you make as closely as possible, so you can see a true representation of what your space will look like when completed.
Draft architectural review
At this stage of our design/build process, we really drill down into the details. Together, we’ll walk through every page of the construction drawings to ensure that it’s all exactly the way you want it.
How many inserts do we need for each cabinet? Exactly where to we want the shower and how large will it be? How high should we place the shower head? We’ve decided we need a 72-inch tub; that’s going to adjust the layout a bit. We really want to nail down these details with you at this stage so we can limit any surprises or delays later on.
Typical time to complete: 2 weeks
Architectural final review
By the time we reach this stage of our design/build process, all of the appliances, plumbing fixtures, and other materials have been selected. We’ll walk through the floor plans one more time with those elements included to make sure there are no concerns. We’ll also cover:
- Budget update: Your design consultant will pull together a list of items that have been added to the scope and put price points to the items to show how they may have affected the original budget.
- Engineering update: If the job goes requires an engineering review (for example, if a load-bearing wall is being removed), we will go over the progress of the review and adjust the project timeline if necessary to account for any additional required work.
- Jobsite walkthrough: During this phase, our team will meet with sub contractors and the project manager to further review the scope of work and firm up subcontractor commitments for things like plumbing, electrical, and HVAC. Since Lamont Bros. is a design/build firm, most of the rest of the work is done by our in-house construction crews.
- Post jobsite walkthrough review: Your design consultant, project manager, and designer will do another walk-through of the plan and determine if any items are missing from the scope, and verify any updates. They will then review that list with you and make any final adjustments.
Typical time to complete: 2 weeks
Contract review and sign-off
With the design plans finalized, we’ll work through the project contract and discuss any issues or concerns you may have. If there are additional options or enhancements to the project, we’ll present those to you at this time. We’ll also cover any adjustments to the budget that may have resulted from decisions made in the design phases. From there, we do a final review of all the drawings and product selections.
Construction start date
Roughly 4 weeks after the construction contract has been signed, construction will start on your project. This time allows for us to order all the products for the job, schedule the sub contractors, and set up the project schedule.
During this time, we’ll review your project with our internal teams so the project manager, remodeling superintendent, and designers are all on the same page.
Design phase total timeline
On average, for a basic bathroom or kitchen refresh, the design process will take 8-10 weeks. For more complex projects like additions or a totally new kitchen, the design process may take up to 12 weeks or more.
Our Design/Build Process – Phase 3. Build
The third phase of our design/build process starts with a pre-construction meeting. We’ll meet at your home to discuss details of the job during construction and how everything will work. This will include worker access to the house, the project schedule, how we’ll protect other parts of your home not included in the remodel, our daily clean-up processes, and we’ll confirm all contact information.
Before any of the construction begins we also want to make sure you know who to contact with any questions or concerns you may have. That’s why we assign a Remodeling Superintendent (RS) as your single point of contact throughout your project.
Your RS is responsible for the on-site management and much of the work that happens day-to-day. He or she will update you every day about the daily work, which subcontractor may be in your home on a given day, and give you a weekly snapshot via our project management software. There, you can track progress and even see the latest photos of your project’s progress.
Protection and Demo
One of the first things we’ll do prior to demo is create a clear separation between the space being remodeled and the rest of your home. Separating off the remodel space will help prevent dirt and dust from going back and forth, and it will keep pets and small children from entering the work area.
We’ll typically erect a pole zip-wall or magnetic wall system to create a sealed off space. This allows for entry when necessary but also for a secure, closed-off area when work is underway.
To minimize dust and keep your home clean, we use an air filtration system like a HEPA filter that constantly filters the air, plus we’ll cover up any ducts in and around the work area so dust doesn’t get inside them.
Once that’s done, we’ll start on demo.
If we’re working on area on the outside of your home, we’ll also help protect the exterior by doing things like laying down chipboard walkways to reduce wear on your lawn as well as taking steps to limit soil erosion.
After the demo is done, we’ll start work on the framing, and rough plumbing, electrical, and HVAC as needed. After this has been completed, we’ll conduct a rough-in walkthrough with you.
This involves making sure things like outlets, light switches and fixtures are where they should be. The idea is to catch any issues before the drywall goes up, as making changes to plumbing, electrical, and HVAC afterwards will likely be costly and cause delays.
This is the where the bulk of the build work takes place. Depending on the project, this will include the installation of doors and windows, putting up drywall, adding new countertops and cabinets, setting tile, finishing plumbing and electrical, adding all the fixtures and appliances, and making sure everything is working properly.
Clean up and 95% walkthrough
As the construction phase comes to a close, our crew will thoroughly clean the space and then we’ll do what we call a “95% walkthrough” with you. Your Remodeling Superintendent will tour your nearly completed new space with you and go over his final punch list to ensure every item has been taken care of.
Your RS will address any remaining items following the 95% walkthrough to make sure everything is ready for you to see your finished new space. You’ll get a grand tour around your remodel; then all that’s left is for you to enjoy it!
Construction phase total timeline
The time for the construction phase will vary widely depending on the type of project. A basic bathroom could up to 6 weeks, while a more complex master bath may take 8 weeks or more.
A basic pull-and-replace kitchen may range from 8-10 weeks, with more complicated kitchen projects taking 12 weeks or more.
With larger projects like additions, expect timelines that are 3 months and longer.
One of the benefits of working with a design/build firm like Lamont Bros. is that we do almost all of the work in-house. That means fewer subcontractors, fewer delays, and more schedule flexibility, so we can finish your project more quickly and you can start enjoying your new space sooner!
- Can I Live At Home During My Remodel
- What Is a Feasibility Study and Why Should I Get One?
- Where to Start When Finishing a Basement
Are you thinking about doing a remodel? We’re happy to discuss your project and start working with you on building your dream space. Simply schedule a conversation with us!