Where do you start the process? Once you’ve determined the space to get the facelift, there are several basic steps to follow:

  • Planning – This is by far the most critical part of your remodel.
  • Footprint – Determine the footprint of the existing space and develop a concept of what the new space will look like. Evaluate things like existing and potential traffic patterns.
  •   Document pros and cons – Does your kitchen operate OK, but is dated and drab. Or you want to completely retool the space. Share what you like and what you hope to achieve.
  • Research – Review what’s hot in the latest design ideas, products and technology for the space you want to change. There’s a lot on the Internet, in magazines and even TV. Clip photos of things you like. The more you bring to the first meeting, the faster a designer will grasp your style and desires. In this case, a picture is worth more than a thousand words.
  • Be flexible – When a designer says, “What if,” be ready to consider the opportunity. Their final design may introduce options you'd never considered. Or, may spot potential problems you couldn’t anticipate.
  • Have a budget – Know what you’re able to spend. A designer has the experience and the know-how to stretch your dollars.
  •   Set a workable timetable – The final plan isn’t likely to come from the first draft, there’s usually a revision or two. You need to agree upon a timeline that works, how many revisions make sense and when the project can begin.
  • Change is costly – Change orders can be anything from a nuisance to a big deal, depending on how far along in the process you are. And they never come without a cost. They cost money and time. So, if you see something you want to change, do it ASAP – another case where time really is money.
  • Stay calm – A good design doesn’t come to life overnight. The more planning and research you do coupled with the work of your designer will pay off. The last thing you want is a rush job – quality carpentry and attention to finishing details takes time. You’ll be glad you were patient when it’s all done.
  • Constant Communication – Don’t think that signing the contract for the renovation project is your last task. Your professional will manage the process but it’s your home and your input will be respected every step of the way.