pool tile

What is a realistic home remodel timeline?

Would you like fries with your new sunroom? While the absurdity of ordering a complex Charlotte remodeling project at a drive-through window might make you chuckle, the unfortunate reality is that the hectic pace of today’s world has gotten many of us (and we include ourselves in this description) so used to getting everything quickly that it can be difficult to wait for things that really do require time to be done properly.

Place an order on Amazon and you often can receive it the same day, or in most cases, the next day. Indeed, why would consumers travel to different stores in search of common items when those shops might not have exactly what you want in stock, and it takes more time and costs money in fuel to drive there than it does to click that “Buy Now” button. When it comes to communication, we can instantly share updates via text or email and pictures in myriad ways, while videos go live on social media as we are filming them.

Because we are operating in a fast-paced society for so many things, it can make us more impatient with things that move slowly – just think about the last time you were stuck behind a car that wasn’t moving a few seconds after the light turned green or were trailing behind a bicyclist on a winding, two-lane road. Likewise, our skewed sense of perspective on time may make some things seem like they are taking forever when they actually are taking the proper time required to do the job correctly.

It’s a matter of perspective.

Let’s consider a common outdoor remodeling task like pointing up stone and pool tiles. It’s extremely labor intensive because it involves removing the existing grout, reinstalling any damaged or lose tiles/stones, and then reinstalling the grout. Add in the fact that this is an outdoor project and as such, is subject to elements that can cause delays – like rain or colder temperatures – and you can see where this can take longer than expected. In reality, the last talented team we had tackle this project took only about 2.5 days to complete it – and that was with a rain delay.

While this was actually right on time and they did a fantastic job, it made us wonder how realistic time frames might play into the expectations of a client who isn’t well-versed in how long things actually take to get done in remodeling construction. That’s where a licensed professional remodeler who is experienced in your type of project should step in to help you as a client understand the process. After all, most homeowners don’t have the depth and breadth of remodeling experience to grasp how long each step should take. Construction requires special materials, skill, labor, and time, as well as contending with weather issues in some cases. That time element includes everything from waiting on permits and inspections to waiting on special order items and waiting for one set of contractors to complete the work they must do to allow the next set to come in and do their jobs.

We are huge proponents of helping our homeowners understand the construction process by setting expectations on the front end and having tools that help guide clients through the process. That’s why we created our own Remodeling guide to explain not only what happens and when in remodeling, but how clients are likely to feel – based on building science – at every stage of the process. We couple that detailed information with our team’s own personal guidance to walk homeowners through every step of the remodeling process. While all of this takes additional time and effort from our team, we believe it’s well worth it because it helps minimize any stress homeowners may be feeling about project timelines.

Setting realistic expectations and checking in to make sure that clients feel comfortable with and understand the pace of a project is critical to achieving positive results. We believe that taking the time to do something right and following a process that results in a quality project will reassure homeowners and give them a sense of comfort and confidence in the home we are creating together.

By Pam Palmer
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