How Is A Remodeling Project Like Taking A Hike?

 

I’d love to say, “Because it’s just a walk in the park!”, which would be great if everything always went according to plan. But as you probably know, life has a way of throwing us curve balls, and sometimes, we’re doing some throwing of our own.

I enjoy hiking as my primary form of exercise, and try to get out at least twice a week. If you live in the Bay Area, you know that we’ve had a lot of rain this winter, which translates to a lot of mud on the trails. Compound that with the fact that in the winter and spring, we get to share our regional parks with lots of cattle. Hiking in the parks these days can be more than a little challenging. My hiking buddy and I have been mostly limiting our hikes to one park that has a trail that’s primarily gravel. So, we were out on our usual route today, when I suggested we mix it up a bit. Seeing as how it was a pretty decent day, and we had lots of time, and I had a handy dandy PDF of the trail map on my iPhone, what could go wrong? Well, we slogged through the mud, climbing higher up in the park, and the trail got fainter and more vague. Then, I slipped in a cow pie, and promptly fell on my butt, wrenching my knee in the process. At this point we were about 4 miles from where the car was parked, up high in the park with a nearly non-existent trail and a bum knee.

So, back to the remodeling project….sometimes you’re about halfway through the job, your kitchen, for all practical purposes is non-existent, you haven’t prepared or eaten a decent meal in weeks, and you wondered why you ever started this mess in the first place. Everything may be going along exactly as planned, but if just feels like it’s taking forever because you’re sick of living with the mess. Or, maybe like my idea to try a new trail, you threw your own curve ball into the job (“as long as the contractor is here and everything is torn up anyway, let’s________”. Fill in the blank. Add some skylights, replace all the flooring in the house at the same time, …..

Meanwhile, what has happened to the intrepid hikers? Well, once we had lost the trail, we had been trudging for quite a while up a hill through the mud, and had no desire to re-trace our steps. We could see a wider trail far below, so we had to totter (or in my case, limp) down a steep rutted hill to a muddy (of course!) trail, cross a creek a couple of times, and eventually we found ourselves on a familiar route that headed back to the car.

So, rest assured that your torn up space will being to take on the familiar appearance of a kitchen, or bath, as the case may be. Cabinets and appliances, or other fixtures appear, counters are installed, and you will begin to feel like the end is in sight, and has all been worth it in the long run.

This is a picture that I took after we climbed the hill, before things started to go downhill, literally and figuratively
This is a picture that I took after we climbed the hill, before things started to go downhill, literally and figuratively

Overcoming Your Remodeling Fears

Recently I was watching a series of commercials about a rouge contractor talking to his clients. Although funny, the comedy is rooted in true fears people have of remodeling. Lets address these fears and how can we can help you overcome them.

 

Commercial: https://youtu.be/7ZB519N2N0o

Fear#1: The contractor is going to disappear & when he is there, he will not listen to you anyway.

 

How to overcome: We help pair you up with qualified contractors who we know, like and trust. We also help you draw up a design so our wants and needs are clearly addressed on the design. The contractor has questions? He or you can call us at anytime to clarify details. We also visit the job to make sure everything is being done per our plan.

 

 

 

Commercial: https://youtu.be/Ifgkt-BtJY8

Fear #2: Contractors will do things that aren’t needed, go over budget and you’ll never get your house back!

 

How to overcome: Before the contractor ever starts we discuss a design so we know what is being done. Taking out the wall might not even be needed or the best solution to your issues.   We help you develop and stay on budget with a realistic timeline.

 

 

 

Commercial: https://youtu.be/ECKRGBti42c

Fear #3: Contractors make things more complicated and confusing than they need to be, set unrealistic timelines and expectations, disappear leaving you questioning everything they have done and your house is still in shambles.

 

How to overcome: Construction can be confusing. Most people don’t do it everyday so it makes sense that you are not a professional. We are here to help walk you thru the process, translating construction jargon into english so you are clear on what is being done and why. You should have confidence in the professionals you hire. While construction is messy and intrusive, it doesn’t have to ruin your life!

 

 

 

Are you or someone you know afraid to remodel? Afraid the contractor will disappear, not listen to what want, go way over budget spending all your money, way past the schedule….

 

We are here to help you! Give us a call to start your project. Remember, remodeling should be fun! =)

Is Green Design a “Thing” Anymore?

 

IMG_6077   About 10 years ago, I began taking classes at UC Berkeley Extension to complete a certificate program in Sustainable Design. As I to worked my way through the program, I began to wonder if eventually, the terms Sustainable Design, or Green Design would become redundant, because all good design would automatically incorporate sustainability. Well, I must not have been the only one to sense that things were heading in that direction, because it wasn’t long after that, just as I was completing the program, that the school stopped offering that particular certificate.

   Increasingly, building codes are being changed that require more water saving and energy saving products than ever before. And, many companies are incorporating sustainable practices into their materials and manufacturing processes.

   You may wonder what constitutes a sustainable or “green” design, and how do you incorporate these concepts into your home remodel project? There are actually a lot of different criteria to consider when evaluating the sustainability of a product or process, and the choice as to what you consider to be a top priority is often an individual decision.

Some of these aspects of sustainability are:

• Personal use of resources in your home, such as how much energy or water is used.

• The wise use of resources in the manufacturing of a product.

• The distance that materials have to travel to get to your job-site, affecting the carbon footprint.

• The responsible resourcing of materials, such as sustainably grown wood for floors and cabinets.

• The policies and practices of the companies that manufacture the products that you choose.

• The way that products affect the immediate environment within the home, especially with regard to off-gassing and materials that create poor indoor air quality.

 

   If these are issues that are of concern to you, it can be confusing and overwhelming to do the research and make choices that are best suited to your individual needs and requirements. Let us use our knowledge and expertise to guide and assist you to find the products that you can incorporate into your remodeling project that will help keep your home and planet happy and healthy.