With time, your lifestyle evolves and needs change. Enhancements to your living space become both desirable and necessary. The same attention to detail and quality craftsmanship essential to new home construction is equally important to every custom renovation. Whether the project involves expansion, build-outs or custom renovations, decades of design planning experience allow Plumb to transform your dreams to reality.
Every desire to renovate a home begins with a problem that initiates wants and needs. We help clients differentiate between what they want and what they really need, with respect to the renovations, keeping in mind that renovations should evolve to continue to meet changing needs over the years, including provisions for Universal Design which allow you to remain in your home as you grow old. If it is not possible to do the entire project at one time, allowances should be made for future additions, taking care not to do anything to cause later difficulties or extra expense.
Location survey documents are reviewed to assure that zoning setbacks are met and that well and septic are far enough from the proposed additions. Bedroom additions may require a septic system upgrade. If the renovation falls outside the building envelope, you can either reduce size or apply for a zoning variance which can take from 1-3 months with no guarantee of approval.
Next to be addressed is the client’s budget and what impact it may have on the size and level of amenities included in the project. It is important that the client share their true budget so the contractor can create a project that will fulfill their needs while staying within their limits. If the budget is not sufficient to do the entire project, it can be designed to be developed in stages, allowing the client to enjoy a portion of the renovations with anticipation of future improvements as finances permit.
With all essential preliminary work complete and construction ready to begin, the project manager provides the client with a prepared schedule detailing how the work will move forward. This schedule properly sets the client’s expectations for progress and completion.
Aside from the quality of work, four other elements are necessary for a successful renovation project. These essentials include neatness, cleanliness, protection against the elements and safety. Plumb’s renovation areas are cleaned and protected on a daily schedule as we monitor construction and cordon off areas that may be dangerous for our clients, their children or family pets.
The less evident but most important element in any renovation project is trust between the client and contractor. We assure our clients that we will respect and protect their home as if it were our own, always trying to limit any disruption to daily life and routines. Our ultimate goal is to work with our clients as partners, striving for the shared outcome of a well designed and built renovation and a pleasant and professional relationship that makes the total experience as enjoyable as possible.
Equally important to trust is consistent, reliable communications. Through open lines of communication via phone, fax, e-mail and on site meetings, questions or problems are addressed on an immediate basis. We understand that the renovation process can be disruptive to our client’s lives and we work to complete the project in an expeditious manner.
With the budget determined, design of the renovation can begin. Professional design requires an understanding of the client’s lifestyle, traffic flow, and room relationship within the house and to the outdoors. Projects are designed to blend seamlessly, both inside and out, with existing architecture as if part of the original structure.
Promotion of energy efficiency through design is as important to renovation as to new construction. Careful placement of windows, expanded overhangs and proper tree shading can in increase ventilation and reduce energy costs.
The use of a design/build contractor offers the advantage of tracking developing project cost to assure that the design is compatible with the client’s budget. However, clients who feel the need for an independent architect should consider interviewing and hiring a contractor at the same time to assure a compatible design and construction team. In addition, the contractor can monitor the cost as the design develops to be sure the budget is not exceeded.
Typically, selection of materials is easier for renovation since color palette and architectural style are already established. To avoid delays it is important that most, if not all selections are made prior to construction. For clients who wish to consult with an interior designer, Plumb can recommend qualified designers to assist with material selection.
A final review and sign off of plans takes place at a preconstruction meeting between the builder, project manager and the client. Also discussed are housekeeping items such as start and stop times, daily clean up procedures, accommodations for family and pets, protection for breakables and communication schedules.