If you are thinking about remodeling or even selling your home, I have some tips for you.

Remodeling is often a daunting task, especially if there is no global supervisor for the project. Many times homeowners will hire someone to provide different portions of the project without having one person responsible for all aspects. This can be done, however, there are some very important things to consider.

  1. Scheduling - The most common mistake made, even by some professionals, is to take into consideration the environment surrounding the project. Here is a good example. Starting a project during the Covid pandemic requires the contractor or person responsible for scheduling to allow for down time. Everything is running slower than normal and this can create a domino effect. If the project is a kitchen remodel and the cabinets have been shipped and a delivery date is given, generally a plumber is scheduled near completion to hook up the sink and faucet. If the cabinetry shows up late or worse yet in the wrong color (it happens) the plumber may have a large project scheduled when you need him or her. Not having a back-up plan would be very irritating to say the least. When times are busy this is another time to have a back-up plan. Having subcontractors lined up with precision may backfire. It only takes the wrong item to show up or a missing item to start the domino effect.

    To illustrate how things can go terribly wrong, I will tell you a story that happened to me when I had just become a professional kitchen designer. The project was to replace the cabinetry, countertops and appliances in a huge kitchen. Cabinetry was due to be delivered on a Wednesday at 8am, so I had my team remvoe the cabinetry on Tuesday so we would be ready first thing in the morning. Late Tuesday night I received a call from the cabinet company. They told me that a spring had broken on the trailer that was hauling the cabinets. The back end of the trailer was dragging on the road and caught on fire. The entire shipment was ruined. I now had to wait 8 weeks for new cabinets to be built and my customer had no kitchen! We had to put up a makeshift temporary kitchen. Lesson learned! So, make sure you have all of the items on hand before you start a project.

  2. Quality products - If you are going to do it, do it right! I am sure your parents may have mentioned this a time or two when you were children. There is nothing worse than putting in an inferior product to save a few dollars, only to find out 5 years later you have to replace it costing 5 to 10 times what was saved originally.

  3. If you are selling - Consider doing cosmetic work. Have all carpets professionally cleaned. Touch up all paint or, if necessary, repaint areas. Paint is cheap in the grand scheme of things. Walk through your home with the mindset of being a buyer. Look for things that might put you off if you were looking at the home to purchase. If you are going to upgrade anything it should be the kitchen. Think about it. Other than a family room, the kitchen is the room where most waking hours are spent. Go online and look at new kitchens and see what you can inexpensively do to upgrade. Often, simply replacing outdated cabinet hardware will help. If your cabinetry looks worn, consider a facelift instead of an entire remodel. Often, a new countertop and painting of the cabinetry is all that is needed to bring a 1980's kitchen to a 2020 look. While you are doing this, get rid of the old fashioned double bowl sink. They are outdated. Make sure your appliances are in working order as well as the toilets and faucets throughout the home. Consider a staging company. They will come in to your home and suggest ways to either rearrange furniture or bring in temporary furniture to make your home look more up to date. If your cabinetry does not have crown molding, consider adding it. It will significantly upgrade the look of your kitchen. Also consider adding above and below cabinet LED lighting. This is not expensive and it makes the kitchen look clean and inviting. Last, but not least, care for your curb appeal. Make sure your shrubs are pruned and the lawn looks good.