You’ve been mulling over home remodeling design ideas for several months now, reconfiguring the space (and your budget) this way or that. Maybe you’ve found inspiration at a local home show, viewed photos on social media, or asked friends and families for recommendations.
Now, it’s time to get down to the nuts and bolts of beginning your home remodel. How do you start? Who do you hire? How can you make all of those cool ideas work on a limited budget and within a reasonable timeframe?
Before you get overwhelmed by all of the decisions that need to be made during a home remodel, consider hiring a general contractor with an in-house designer to walk you through the process. At Central Construction Group (CCG), all home remodeling clients receive professional design guidance at no extra charge as part of our general contracting services.
Here are 3 ways hiring a contractor with an in-house designer can save you time and money on your next home remodeling project:
1. Finalize Floor Plans with In-House Designer
When a homeowner hires CCG, they immediately get two fresh perspectives on how their home remodeling dreams can be achieved. As an experienced general contractor, CCG owner Brian Oltmanns brings structural knowledge of what can or cannot be done, while CCG interior designer Stephanie Larmor knows all the latest trends and available materials.
“Having a contractor and designer come out for that initial meet-and-greet is good because we can really hone in on what the client needs and what we can do,” Larmor says.
Be prepared to answer a whole lot of questions from the CCG duo. They’ll want to know things like: What are your goals for the project? Are you remodeling to stay in the home or resell? Do you want to change the layout? How can you use the space more efficiently?
From there, CCG provides a ballpark estimate for the scope of the project and creates a few different floor plans with various design concepts for the client to review. For most homeowners, seeing their cool ideas in an actual floor plan helps them finalize the project and move forward, no longer wasting time on mulling over ideas.
For instance, a recent client wanted to transform an old sunroom into a bedroom for guests to stay and for future resale value, but she wasn’t sure whether to remove a wall and make it part of the living space and use it as an office or create a new bedroom with closet space and an updated bathroom. Seeing both options in a floor plan helped the client make a final decision to move an exterior wall for a bedroom addition.
“I think that saves a lot of time for a client, especially in the beginning phase when they don’t know which direction to go,” Larmor says.
2. Select Materials with In-House Designer
Larmor also saves clients time and money by knowing which materials will work best for their home remodeling project and allocated budget. She helps indecisive homeowners move beyond what too often becomes a perpetual planning phase.
A client may love the elegant and timeless look of Carrara Marble for their new bathroom, but they’re not willing to spend the higher cost for natural stone tile. Larmor can suggest various porcelain tile options that cost half as much and look just like natural stone marble. “I can show them some more budget-friendly alternatives,” Larmor says.
In addition to helping them select actual materials, Larmor takes a client’s finalized floor plan and creates 3D color renderings that can be edited in real time as decisions are made for tile size, cabinet style, paint color, etc.
“I had a client yesterday who had some drawings for a new tiled shower and I talked her out of doing this accent piece. She saw it in 3D and she didn’t like it, she thought it was too bulky,” Larmor says. “It’s one thing for me to say, ‘Don’t do that, I know what looks good.’ But for them to see it too, that’s really cool.”
3. Get a Smoother Process with In-House Designer
A general contractor works closely with his in-house designer to understand the specific needs, lifestyles, priorities and budgets for each home remodeling client. Establishing clear communication and creating detailed plans with the homeowner results in a smoother project that’s completed within budget, on time and with fewer change orders.
Following a specific schedule with weekly deadlines, interior designer Larmor can walk you through each step of the process by helping you choose cabinets, countertops, backsplash, flooring, appliances, paint colors, lighting, and more. “A lot of clients like that because they’re not worried about how all of this is going to come together,” she says. “I help them finalize what’s important.”