Planning for spring projects

Kitchen remodel in Bellingham, WashingtonEvery year prospective clients call us after the winter holidays and ask if we can start their project in April. We always have to break the news that 1). Our calendar is full and 2). It takes 5-8 months to plan a project. Hence this blog post. Let’s cover a few project planning details that apply to every job. This will hopefully help clients solve the problem of starting projects later than they’d like.

Project planning details

  • On average it takes 5-8 months to plan a project. This is from initial contact with an architect/designer to permits and a construction contract. It’s worth mentioning that the month of December cannot be included in that time frame. Or, at best it doesn’t count as a full month!
  • One variable that can change that timeframe is the amount of time clients have to put into planning their project. This may be a generalization but we’ve found that a retired couple with no children at home will often have more time to invest in planning a project than a home with two parents that work full-time away from the home.
  • The number of people involved in any one project is often surprising. It can take a fair amount of time to get schedules lined up. Engineers are often backed up, materials sometimes have a long lead time, etc. The earlier we can schedule projects the smoother it will go.
  • In a typical year we complete 6-8 large projects (full house remodels and new homes). In addition we complete a handful of smaller jobs (kitchen remodels and additions.) Those time slots often fill up 6 months or more in advance.

Important take-aways for clients:

  • Contact us well ahead of when you’d like to start your project. If you want to start construction in April call us no later than September/October.
  • Pick your team early! We use an integrated design model and help clients find the right people early on. This team will stay with them from design to project completion. The team will include an interior designer, architect or building designer and possibly a structural engineer and landscape architect.

Planning a remodeling project or new home construction is a fun process. It also takes quite a bit of time. The earlier you start the easier and less stressful it will be!