- Would you like to remodel your home?
- Has it been more than 5 years since you moved into your home?
- Has your lifestyle changed in any way?
- Have you added any children or other relatives (i.e. parents) to your home?
- Have any children moved out of the house?
- Do you have a special place in the home for you to do the things you like to do?
- Do you have a comfortable place to exercise?
- Would you like to have a guest room, home office, study, studio, library, home theater, media room or another room you don’t already have?
- Would you enjoy your home more if it had a different configuration of its space?
- Does the exterior of you home appeal to you?
- Is there anything you would like to do in your home that you can’t do now?
- Could your home be more conducive to having friends and family visit?
- Are the outdoor spaces adequate and/or enjoyable?
- Would you like to have a more modern and conveniently planned kitchen?
- Could your bathrooms or powder room use a facelift?
- Could you use better or more storage space?
- Could your unfinished basement be converted into more useable living space you could enjoy?
- Does your home need cosmetic or structural repair?
- Is your home as energy efficient as you would like it to be?
- Are your windows and exterior door efficient?
- Are there things about the way your home is designed that will cause you to have to move out of it before you will want to?
- If you had to sell your home today, would it compare favorably to other homes on the market?
- Do you like your neighborhood but not your house?
There is nothing more frustrating than when you’re in need of information and, instead of speaking to a person, you can only reach an answering machine. With literally a mountain of decisions to be made before construction even begins, you don’t want to be left stranded. That is why all of my clients have my personal cell phone number and email address. If communication is muddled or even nonexistent before the project even begins, imagine how difficult it will be when there is an actual problem.
A home remodeling project from start to finish is quite similar to an airplane ride. Before boarding the plane, your nerves might be shaky. But knowing there is an experienced pilot in control of the plane will assist in putting you at ease. Once in the air, a great pilot will fly you through or around any obstacles in your path and will land the plane safely upon arrival to your destination. This concept is the same of a great construction company. There will be times of extreme highs, turbulence, and maybe an unexpected storm. Even so, an experienced architect and builder will act as your own personal pilot, looking out for you and promising to bring you back down to the ground. You will arrive happily at the end of your journey, ready to live in your new space.
3. A Passion for the Client
It is very difficult to design and build a custom project without truly knowing your client. I am amazed when I meet with potential clients, and they will say, “We had a guy out yesterday and he spent an hour telling us how much he loves to work on newly built homes.” The problem with that is their home was built sixty years ago—not a great way to start a new relationship. Because your home is an extension of your personality and lifestyle, make sure you choose a company that offers a free consultation, taking the time to get to know you. There are so many variables and reasons why one might remodel a kitchen or add on a bedroom. To make the most of your space and budget, a builder must take the time to ask questions and really listen to the answers. The company you hire must have a passion driving them to invest in your best interests.
When making an investment of $30,000 or more, it’s important to know if the contractors working on your home have the required skills and qualifications to do so. Unfortunately, I have see projects quickly turn into disasters because a charming general contractor was hired to build a project, but then employed inexperienced workers to complete the job without even proper supervision. While there is nothing illegal about this model of business, I would ask you to consider one question: Who will go the extra mile—an employee, willing to cut corners, or a skilled tradesman, passionate about the quality of his or her work?
5. Licensing / Insurance
Please make sure that all parties coming into your home are licensed in their respective fields of expertise. Additionally, they should have the appropriate insurance to protect you and your home should any issues arise.
Architects are licensed professionals. Like doctors and lawyers, they have completed university programs and lengthy internships, and they have passed a series of rigorous exams. Their training covers many areas ranging from landscape design to structural engineering.
By the means of a diverse education, architects can see possibilities and find solutions. While a builder or a home designer may make some adaptations at your request, a good architect will anticipate your needs—even if you are not sure how to express them. For example a homeowner might automatically assume that to yield more space in his home he needs an extension or addition. But an architect may see some other possibility, like taking down a wall, or extending the house with a bay window, or switching the room’s function. Problem solving is his or her business.
Whether working on an addition, remodel or renovation, or a new home, architects usually wear many hats. They may create the design, do the drafting, select the materials, and supervise the builder throughout the entire work process. For an addition, remodel or renovation, your architect will visit your home and observe how the existing space is utilized, listen to your wants, and discuss what you hope to accomplish through the project. If you are interested in building a new home, your architect will want to discuss everything that you want the new home to accomplish and will also visit the construction site to observe the direction of the sun, the placement of trees, and the location of the best views.
What makes Winklemann Design & Construction unique is that we offer you the services
of a trusted architect, already in-house. Before designing your remodel or new home, we will spend time talking with our clients, seeking to answer the following questions:
- What is that you hope to accomplish with your project, what do you really need?
- What would you do if you could have a few little extras in your project?
- What would you do if budget was not an issue…if you could dream a little?
Even if you are working within a tight budget, it does not make good economical sense to cut corners on design. A talented architectural professional will help you avoid costly mistakes – and can assure that the home you build or the remodeling you desire is ideally suited for the way you live. You may even be able to squeeze in a few extras that you didn’t think you could afford.
An architect is a design professional that will work with you to get exactly the project you want and need, and will help you get the most for your dollars.