Remodel Design Guide: Selections Phase

Your remodel design is coming along nicely. You’ve settled on a design concept — the overall layout and “big picture” of your remodel. Now, it’s time to begin the selections phase.  During this phase of your remodel journey, you and your design team will focus on making selections for specific products and design features. You’re going to have a lot of choices to make, and it can sometimes feel a bit overwhelming. Fortunately, you’ll have a highly experienced design team to guide you through the process. 

At Lamont Bros., our design process is designed to be as simple for you as possible. Our goal is to help you design a remodel tailored to your needs through a process that is easy to understand. You don’t have to be an expert in remodel construction – we’ve got that part covered. During the selections process, our experts will help you understand the differences in products and materials to make informed decisions. 

In this article, you can learn everything you need to know about the selections process. Once you understand what to expect, you can approach this phase of your remodel with confidence. The specific topics we’ll discuss include:

What is the selections phase and why does it matter?

During the concepts phase of your design process, you and your design team selected the general layout and design for your remodel. Now, it’s time to dig into the details. The purpose of the selections phase is to put product names and specific budgets on each item in your design. For example, let’s say during the concepts stage you decided on a subway backsplash tile. During the selections phase, you’ll choose a specific tile product from a tile vendor.

The selections phase will consist of a series of meetings between you and your design team. Your team will help you sift through possible selection items, considering your expectations, budget, and style preferences to suggest options that fit your needs. For major selection items such as cabinets, flooring, and countertops, your design team will provide several samples for you to look at and handle. Other smaller selections you’ll be able to make on your own time.

At Lamont Bros., we use Buildertrend Project Management Software to streamline the selections process.

Your design team’s job during this part of the process is to be the expert on what products are available and could work for your remodel. Instead of having to research your options before making a selection, you can let your design team curate several options for you. Then, you simply choose which one you like best.

Better control over visual design

The selections phase is important for two main reasons. The first is that it offers you greater control over the visual design and detail of your remodel. As you work through the selection process, you’ll have the opportunity to compare different products and finish materials to better understand which ones will work best for you. 

The selections phase allows you to see how different materials and colors will match up and work together.

When you work with Lamont Bros., you’ll make your selections using our project management system, Buildertrend. In this system, you can select products from a wide range of vendors, so you’ll have many options to choose from. You can also leave comments on each selection. This makes it easier to clarify any expectations you may have.

More predictable & manageable budget

In addition to design, this phase of the design process also helps you better manage and understand your budget. The selections you make for your design affect the cost of a remodel. During the selections process, you’ll be able to look at material expenses side by side to determine how different products may raise or lower your overall cost.

At Lamont Bros., we often use a selection ranking system of “good, better, and best.” As you work through the many product selections, you can use this system to identify areas where you can cut down on costs. For example, if you have a “best” level light fixture selected where a “better” or “good” will work just as well, that might be an area that can improve your bottom line.

How to make the most of your selections process

Remember, the selections phase exists for your benefit. You’ll have an entire design team to guide you through the process of selecting materials for your remodel. There are a few things to keep in mind to make sure you get to most out of it. 

Keep your design team involved in the process

One of the greatest benefits design/build firm brings to the table is a network of connections with many different vendors. Your design team will be able to use these connections to provide you with a huge selection of products to choose from. A good design/build firm will have a showroom where you can compare different product samples.

Your design team can help you find products that fit your needs and your budget. Use them as a resource!

While making selections, you may find yourself wanting to select products from other vendors outside of what your designers suggest. This isn’t always a bad thing. Occasionally, the vendors your team recommends might not offer the product or material you want. However, often your contractor negotiates better pricing for you from the vendors they work with. If you select most of your products from an outside vendor, it can have negative effects on your budget. It’s almost always best to choose from the selection options your design team presents to you.

Know what you are willing to compromise on

Every homeowner has certain expectations for their remodel that are non-negotiable. Perhaps it’s a specific brand of appliance or a countertop that you have your heart set on. Whatever these may be for you, you need to communicate those things with your design team. 

The design team should be aware of what selections in your remodel are most important to you. That way, they can help you manage your budget by suggesting compromises on items that don’t fit this category. It’s 

Make decisions you can stick with

When your remodel moves into construction, the contractor will purchase materials based on your selections. So, when you change your mind about the color of your flooring or the style of cabinets halfway through construction, the contractor has to re-order those items. 

There’s nothing wrong with changing your mind. However, the less you do it, the easier and less expensive your remodel will be. For this reason, you should carefully consider each selection you make. Think about how it will look in your home, how it will affect the way you interact with your home, and how much it will cost. Although you still might change your mind about a few things, carefully and intentionally considering each selection will help you make choices you are confident in. 

What comes after the selection process?

Following the selections process, your remodel team will use the decisions you’ve made to finalize your remodel design. Once this is done, there are a few final steps you can look forward to. 

Review the final design & budget

The product selections are the final key to the puzzle of designing a remodel. Once you’ve selected all of your products and finishes, your design team can incorporate these selections into the remodel design and finalize the document.

It also means that the project can undergo final pricing. The cost of the remodel depends on the cost of the products. Because of this, you won’t know the exact dollar amount of the remodel until all selections are complete. After selections, the project manager can price out the entire project including selections. The price they come up with will be the price on your construction contract.

Sign the construction contract

Speaking of which, the next step in your remodel is to sign on the dotted line! With selections completed, the only thing left for you to do is give your build team permission to move forward with construction. You can learn more about signing a construction contract from our article, “What to Expect in a Remodel Construction Contract.”

Ready to learn more about the design-build process?

After reading this article, you should now have a strong understanding of the selections process and how you can use it to make the most of your remodel. Now, take the next step in your research. Visit our page on The Design-Build Process to learn about how you can have the best remodeling experience available. 

Thinking about a remodel and want to talk to a designer? We’d love to chat with you. Click the button below to schedule a free video consultation with a member of our design team. We’ll help you plan for your remodel and learn what to expect from the process.