Step 9: Sign on the Dotted Line
After you've met with your architect or designer and agreed on a plan, a budget, a style, and a timeline, get it all in writing. Home renovations are costly undertakings. Mid-stream changes, miscommunications, and a lack of clarity can cost you time, money, and, above all else, sanity!
Step 10: Have a Master Plan
Any contractor worth his salt will want to see a complete set of blueprints before agreeing to a project. An architect or designer can draw these up for you. Make sure you've got both the blueprints and your architect or designer with you when meeting with your contractor—they'll need to work together.
Step 11: Have a Design Center Contact Person
There are literally hundreds and hundred of tiles, countertops, sinks, and windows at today's design centers. Shopping for the one you want can be overwhelming. Connect with a representative at the design center where you'll be visiting and purchasing. That rep can steer you through the sea of design details with ease.
Step 12: Be Flexible
Even with the best-laid plans, something always comes up. Just like the rest of us, contractors have families, people get sick, orders don't come in on time, and tiles get cracked during shipping. Count on many bumps along the way in your renovation. With luck, and your careful pre-project planning, your design professional will be there every step of the way, literally living with you throughout the process. It's always smart to be prepared for glitches. Just think—when they don't occur you'll be pleasantly surprised!