09 October, 2021

Avoid Remodel Headaches: Document Every Decision

Avoid Remodel Headaches

For over 30 years, our principal designer has designed both new construction and remodel projects. Over Lisa's career, she has learned that carefully documenting design decisions before anyone starts any demolitions helps to avoid remodel headaches.
Beautiful designs are wonderful, but rebuilding them accurately requires analytical thinking and a well-honed process. A good construction package is needed to make sure the designer and homeowners' decisions are implemented properly.
If you are considering a remodel project, know that documentation should absolutely be a part of the planning process. When you work with Lilu, once your remodel design is complete and every item that will be in your space has been selected, we will create a construction package for you that helps avoid those remodel headaches. Document every decision!

Written Material, Fixture, and Fitting Specifications

One of the things Lilu will do to help you avoid remodel headaches is to include documentation for all the information about materials included in your spaces, as well as how and where those materials will be used. We will even go into how they will be installed...all the details!
This helps our clients avoid questions during the remodeling process by anticipating everything a contractor or sub might need to know to complete the space. This will help everything go as smoothly as possible!
We really get into it for our clients, down to the smallest detail. We touch on the type of grout for tile, the grain direction of wood, the type of paint, the faucet, and even the finish of the faucet! Not a thing will go undocumented, making your remodel migraine-free.
Check out our blog from earlier this week to see a recent bathroom remodel project that took on all the details!

Construction Notes

Next, we tackle the construction notes. These will cover all the expectations, down to the quality of the cabinetry.
Basically, it will be a written document detailing everything, including what is to be removed, what is to be installed, and how. They are also numbered and noted on the drawings. Written and drawn documents, when combined, fully describe the scope of the project. They include keys for any symbols on the drawing too, to ensure they are understood by contractors.
These notes protect you from substandard work, which is always our goal!
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Demolition and Reconstruction Plans

Over the many years I've been in this business, I've seen it all. I've seen contractors getting over zealous and removing everything from a space, even though a client wanted to reuse appliances or fixtures. When contractors accidentally demolish things, it adds costs to the project!
That's why we use demolition and reconstruction plans for our clients, to show where we are starting and how the space is being reshaped.

New Floor Plan

When we help with your remodel project, we will also make a new floor plan that shows the floor material layout and the location of all the fixtures and fittings.
This floor plan gives a clear view of the space that you're aiming for. It also shows how the written notes relate to the drawn plan and important dimensions that must be achieved in the finished space.
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In addition to floor plans, we provide elevations that show everything from cabinetry layout, the height of the lighting, door details, and relationships between things like doors, windows, soffits, and permanent fixtures in the space.
Elevations also includes the important detail of dimensions such as depths of cabinets, and how they relate to each other. This will save you so much stress and help avoid those remodel headaches!
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Sections are even more detailed than elevations. They can show something as specific as what happens inside cabinetry. For instance, the type of storage, whether shelves are fixed or adjustable, and construction details. It also points out the features that are in the interior like outlets and specialty storage.
We document every detail and ensure that you get exactly what you want.

Lighting and Electrical Plans

Lighting and electrical plans show where lighting, outlets, and switches are located. As well as how the light is layered.
When facing a huge remodel project, lighting might feel like the last thing on your mind. We've got it covered. For more on lighting design, check out our bathroom lighting blog!

Why Construction Documents Matter

So, we've gone through all the extensive documentation we handle for our clients when tackling remodel projects to help our clients avoid remodel headaches.
The combination of written and drawn documents create a contract with the builder on what must be delivered in the completed space, the required quality and all of the details. If something is sub-standard or incomplete, referring back to these documents gives a home owner assurance that the communication about project was clear, and that items will be corrected to conform to the original design.
Good luck with your next remodel project! Don't forget to document every detail.
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Comments on Avoid Remodel Headaches: Document Every Decision
  1. Janet Lorusso says:

    THIS! This is Sooooo so important! Such thorough documentation that you are showing is what makes all the details go to plan resulting in a beautifully executed design.

  2. Mary Ann Benoit says:

    The amazing amount of care and detail you provide your clients and all the people working on the project is so important in creating a beautiful design and smooth process for everyone.

  3. Sheri Bruneau says:

    This…is so, so important. Lisa, you have done a wonderful job explaining the real value of having an Interior Designer as part of your renovation or new build team. Being as specific as you can is most helpful for the crews who will carry out the work. Ensuring the documents are onsite allows for the crews to have specific directions. Having to stop work to get clarification is such a waste of time.
    Well done, my friend!

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