So, the time has come to remodel your home. If like many other homeowners, you decide to work with a design-build firm, you’ll have a team of professionals working with you to design and construct your new remodel.
At Lamont Bros, our full-process construction team consists of several highly skilled designers, craftsmen, and carpenters, each of whom serves an important role in the success of your remodel.
This article will discuss the different professionals you are likely to encounter throughout the remodel process. You can learn more about their individual skills and responsibilities, and how they can help make a home more your own.
A good remodel begins with a good design. When a homeowner hires a design-build firm, it’s often because they know the value of having their remodel designed by the same company that builds it.
When you contact a design-build firm, the first person you’ll likely talk to is a design consultant. Your design consultant will serve as your guide throughout the design process, helping you make decisions about your remodel.
The design consultant will meet with you several times over the course of your project. Their job will be to translate your expectations, taste, and style into the remodel design plans. They will help you establish several parameters of your remodel, including:
The most important factor in designing a remodel is to establish what you plan to change. Establishing the scope of the project includes deciding which rooms you plan to remodel and how extensively you plan to remodel them.
Your design consultant will work with you to decide what changes will serve your needs best while remaining cost-effective. This can range in complexity from a bathroom pull-and-replace all the way up to a fully custom whole-home remodel.
The total remodel cost is largely affected by the scope of your project (and vice versa). A design consultant will help you set expectations for the budgetary needs of your remodel.
It’s important for you to have an idea of how much a project will cost before design begins and know what the project will cost before the construction starts. One of the advantages of working with a design-build firm is that the project design team can accurately estimate the cost for our in-house builders to construct a remodel.
The process of designing a remodel also involves a designer. This professional design staff member will handle the technical challenge of translating your ideas into actual designs.
You will likely meet your designer within the first couple weeks of working with a design-build firm. The designer will be the one taking detailed measurements of your home during the as-built survey. This is the phase when your design team surveys your home to determine what remodel work can be done in it.
The Designer is a specialized professional matched to your project who has the expertise and skills to make sure that you get the best possible remodel design for you. Their focus is to plan the most aesthetically pleasing, functional remodel possible for your home.
A huge part of the designer’s job is to curate product selections that fit within your project’s budget. One of the challenges of designing a remodel lies in the balance between expectations and financial constraints. Your design team wants to give you the greatest benefit for your dollar amount. Much of this responsibility goes to the designer, who must find actual products such as light fixtures, flooring material, and appliances that both meet your expectations and fit your budget.
The designers at Lamont Bros. work with 3D-enabled architectural drawing software to create the construction documents. So, as they develop your remodel design, you can see computer-generated images of what your remodel will look like. They also detail out all the specifications that are needed for your project.
Once your remodel design is drafted and you’ve signed a construction contract, your project moves into the construction phase. At this point, the design staff hands the reins over to your build team, who will use the plans developed during the design process to bring your remodel to life.
Though your project manager is focused on the construction of your project your project manager’s involvement begins in the design phase. They work closely with the design team to estimate labor and material budgets and schedule construction projects as well as consult about the construction feasibility of concepts.
The project manager is the tie that binds between design and production. Their job is to estimate costs, plan work schedules, and coordinate labor personnel for a remodel. Project managers usually manage multiple remodels at once.
You’ll probably meet your project manager for the first time at one of several job walks before signing a construction contract. . After this, they’ll probably make frequent visits to your home to check in on build progress. Once your project starts, the PM will provide support for the Superintendent as they take the helm and start building your project.
At Lamont Bros., we assign a dedicated production team to each remodel we do. That way, your construction team can focus on doing your remodel well, without any added distractions. Each dedicated production team is led by a remodel superintendent.
The role of a superintendent is to manage the on-site construction staff. This means making sure the team’s work is both high-quality and efficient. Our superintendents are highly trained in remodel carpentry, and many of them started off as carpenters, themselves. You’ll often see the superintendents working alongside the other build staff, especially when a task requires more skill or attention to detail.
Your remodel superintendent will lead day-to-day operations when construction begins in your home. As a result, this will likely be the person you have the most interaction with throughout the entire process.
As the hands and feet of a design-build team, carpenters make up the bulk of our production staff. These team members contribute most of the construction labor worked in a given project.
Carpenters play a vital role in bringing your remodel project off the page and into your home. They handle a majority of the work done in your home, ranging from demolition of the old space to finish carpentry and trim installation.
Depending on the size and scope of your remodel, you may have anywhere from 1 to 3 carpenters on your build team.
In addition to the Lamont Bros. employees you’ll encounter during your remodel, there are a handful of external professionals and contractors who will contribute to the success of your remodel.
You might never meet the engineer who works on your remodel, but it’s important to know about the service they provide. Our design teams regularly work with subcontracted engineers to ensure the structural integrity of a home remains safe during construction.
We often hire these specialists to work on residential remodel projects that alter the structure of a home. Additions, conversions, and large-scale kitchen or bathroom remodels may require the involvement of an outside engineer.
When a project requires building permits, it also requires an inspector to ensure the permits are followed. Although inspector protocols vary depending on the jurisdiction where you live, the basic idea remains the same.
During the design phase, you’ll likely have a plans inspector who makes sure the design will follow building codes. Because the plans usually get sent to the municipal inspection office, you likely won’t meet the plans inspector.
Once the job moves to production, permits also require a site inspector. This person will occasionally visit the jobsite to ensure the construction work meets standard building regulations.
In some cases, a different inspector will be present at each inspection. However, if you live in Portland and choose to use the city’s Field Issuance Remodel (FIR) Program, the same inspector will serve as your plans inspector and site inspector from start to finish.
At Lamont Bros., we as a company want to offer the best quality work to our clients. Sometimes, that means outsourcing the labor to specialized contractors. This is especially true for specific trades, which require a license issued by the state.
During the design phase, we establish what work can be done in-house and what needs to be subcontracted out. That way, we can invite any subcontractors to attend the site walkthrough and introduce them to you and your home before construction begins. You can read more about how and why Lamont Bros hires subcontractors in our article, “How much work does a design-build firm subcontract out?”
Remodels often include re-wiring the electrical circuits of a home. This is true for most kitchen remodels, whole-home renovations, and additions. Electrical work can be a serious hazard if not done correctly. Not only that, but the law requires that electrical re-wiring be done by a licensed electrician.
Though less hazardous than electrical work, a poorly-done plumbing job can cause serious damage to a home. Plumbing work needs to be done by a plumber licensed by the state. . This is another trade that we subcontract out to the specialists.
Depending on the scope of the work, we may also hire an HVAC technician to handle your ventilation systems. This isn’t always the case since HVAC doesn’t require an additional license like plumbing and electrical do. If the job is complex, we often bring in a specialist to do anything that takes complex calculations or specialized work.
Sometimes, a remodel involves work that doesn’t technically require a license but would benefit from a craftsman trained in that specific kind of work.
Stonemasonry and decorative concrete are excellent examples of this. Our build team can and sometimes does do this kind of work when the scope is limited or simple. Other times, it makes more sense to hire a specialized craftsman.
This decision is made on a case-by-case basis in order to make sure that you get the Lamont Bros standard of high-quality work in an efficient manner.
Ready to meet your team?
If working with a design-build team sounds like a great way to accomplish your remodeling goals, then you can read all about our design-build process here.
Once you’ve done your research and decided whether or not the design-build model is right for you, schedule a meeting with one of our design consultants. You can request a video conference call by clicking the button below.