We’re all familiar with the message printed on the rear view mirrors of our cars: “Objects in the mirror may be closer than they appear.” Knowing that the cars behind us are closer than they seem affects the way we drive. The same principle applies when remodeling a Naples home. The actual deadline for starting your project may be closer than you think. What is the real timeline of a project—how long does it take?
Why is this so important? Every year, right around mid-September, we experience a big influx of requests from clients who want to have their kitchen, master bathroom, wet bar, outdoor kitchen, family room, or living room renovated before company arrives for the “Holidays”. Naturally, we’re delighted about the opportunity to bring their dreams and wishes to fulfillment, but we’re also a bit concerned about the timing. November may seem like a long way off when it’s only August, but there’s usually more to the process than meets the eye.
A date that looks like it’s far off is actually much closer than it appears. Let’s take a brief look at the various phases of remodeling—and what happens in each phase. That can help you understand why planning early is so important if you want to be ready for your holiday guests.
Keep in mind that every remodeling project is different—and so are the clients. Some clients need more time to work through the design and selection phase Some clients are perfectly happy to use stock products and materials that are easily and quickly accessible. Others want finishes that have to be custom ordered (and may not be available for 8 to 10 weeks). On top of that, there can be custom installations and unusual design elements that simply take longer.
That's why it's essential to meet with your remodeler early to map out exactly what you want—and when you hope to have the project completed. Once you establish those things your remodeler can work backward to establish a realistic start time in order to meet your deadline.
It’s helpful to understand the different phases of the process in order to allow adequate time to complete your project. Let’s take a look at what happens in each phase.
Phase 1: Decision-Making
To be honest, some of the phases of your remodeling project will overlap. You will have decisions to make throughout most of the phases. But there are some decisions that will have to come first. Perhaps the most important decision of all is deciding who you will be partnering with to achieve the results you want.
Choosing the right remodeler is every bit as important as choosing the right design, materials, and finishes. In order to make the right choice, you will want to take the time to meet with several different companies, research some websites, and talk to friends or colleagues who have renovated their homes recently. You’ll also want to visit a number of showrooms. All of that takes time. Count on spending at least 1-2 weeks making that decision. This phase is far too important to rush through. Take your time and make sure you feel comfortable with your decision. Here’s an article that provides helpful questions for interviewing potential contractors.
Phase 2: Designing
The design stage is one of the most fun phases in the remodeling process. Once you have decided on the company you want to work you’ll want to start designing your project. At Reed Design-Build, a member of our professional design team will help guide you through that process.
Our designers will give you the best design possible while working within your budget and your schedule. One advantage of using the design-build process for your remodeling project is that the designers and the builders are part of the same team. That means the items you and your designer decide on are passed on seamlessly—there’s no breakdown in communication!
After reviewing drawings, floor plans, elevations, and sketches with your designer, you’ll visit showrooms to look at material samples and chose colors, textures, and finishes. Because you will have so many options, this is also a phase you won’t want to rush through. After all, you’ll be living with these choices for years to come, so you’ll want to be comfortable with your selections. What’s great is that our designers have plenty of experience and can help guide you through the process. Still, you should plan on taking
2-3 weeks for this phase. The more detailed and involved the project, the longer you should allow. Once again, you’ll want to allow yourself plenty of time to explore design options and ideas with your designer. It’s well worth the investment of time.
Phase 3: Products & Permitting
Once your designs and plans are complete, and you’ve made your decisions regarding materials, colors, and finishes, it’s time to make sure that all permits are pulled and that orders are placed for products that need to be ordered. The timeframe for receiving permits can vary from job to job. To be safe, you should allow roughly 3-4 weeks for a permit to be approved.
This is also the part of the process in which products such as plumbing, tile, countertops, flooring, cabinetry, lighting, and other items should be ordered. All of these items can have different lead times. Some things may be stocked items that can be picked up immediately. Others may ship quickly and arrive in a matter of days. But you should allow plenty of time for items such as cabinetry to arrive. It’s smart to allow between 6-8 weeks for cabinets to arrive. The other thing to keep in mind is that items sometimes go on backorder. That’s why it’s good to order flooring and tile well in advance. You don’t want your builder waiting around for materials! By the way, if you are considering new cabinets, here’s an article that highlights the best semi-custom cabinets for your Naples home.
The good news is that this is probably the most relaxing phase of the remodeling process. You’ll enjoy some peace and quiet while your remodeler gets moving on ordering all the materials, filing all the necessary permitting paperwork, and putting together the project schedule. Still, your participation is essential in making the decisions about what you want—and you’ll have to make those decisions in a timely manner so that your builder has plenty of time to get products and materials “in hand” before construction starts.
Phase 4: Installation
This is the phase that most homeowners think about when they ask, “How long is my remodel going to take?” It’s true that this is the phase where you’ll see the most activity and progress.
To be honest, most of the time the schedule at this point is pretty straightforward. If you’ve allowed yourself enough time in each of the first three phases (and everything was done properly and planned out accordingly) the physical renovation should run smoothly. On the average, the actual building part of a project should run around 6-8 weeks. This can fluctuate a bit, of course, depending on the scope of the project and on the complexity and customization involved.
You can see why a simple question such as, “How long is my Naples home renovation going to take” can be a bit tricky to answer. The key to getting your renovation completed by a certain deadline (such as “the Holidays”) takes a good amount of planning—and help from your remodeling professionals. And while finishing up a project before the “Holidays” is definitely possible, you’ll want to make sure that you allow yourself enough time so that you can enjoy the experience both before, during, and after the project is complete.
Objects in the rearview mirror of your car may be closer than they appear. Deadlines for finishing your home remodeling project by the holidays can be closer than they seem as well. Don't rush the process, but start early enough that you can enjoy the ride!