The housing market in Denver continues to soar to new heights and construction is moving along with it. Rather than selling their $500k home and buying a $1M home with the added features they would like, homeowners are choosing to remodel their existing home. For those who are unfamiliar with the process, it can be a daunting task. Knowing whether to begin by talking with a builder or interior designer first can be equally confusing. Some builders offer design services. Some designers project manage contractors. An important rule to remember when making these first steps is that you should find someone you like and trust to provide what you’re looking for.
While the case can be made for many different business models, I’d like to propose one way to go about your project and explain the benefits.
- Start with a General Contractor. Talk with them about your project, ideas, questions and priorities. If you aren’t comfortable with their reputation, personality, warranty, etc, then show them the door and keep interviewing until you find one that you like. There’s no point in getting a bid from them if they haven’t passed this first bar. Once you’ve found a General Contractor that you like, ask for their recommendation for interior designers that they have experience with on projects like yours. You shouldn’t be expected to sign a contract with the GC yet as they will still need to provide you with a competitive bid based on the design that is yet to be done.
- Interview Interior Designers. Review their portfolio, ask about what services they provide, and get a feel for their personality as well. If it isn’t a fit, let them know and ask your GC who else they recommend. It will be a huge benefit working with builders and designers that are aligned in purpose and style to keep your project moving forward and executed well. Once you’ve found an ID that you like, retain their services in order to create “biddable” plans.
- Request that your chosen GC provide you with a detailed bid based on the plans created by your ID. If their bid isn’t agreeable, continue to interview other General Contractors until you have a contractor you like.
- Build it.