You've Decided to Build or Renovate - Now What?

I don't know about you, but I am seeing the home industry booming, people making interstate and neighborhood moves, and demand for new furniture higher than it has been for awhile. As we all acclimate to the importance of loving where we live, today I am going to share details about the renovation process and the timelines to keep in mind if you're thinking about a big project! As a designer AND a homeowner who has gone through the design and renovation process multiple times, I know there are so many details that would have helped to know before even starting the process!


That's why I'm giving you the inside scoop into the planning process so you are set up for success BEFORE you start making big home decisions. Remember to allow for at least an extra 6-8 weeks for COVID related delays if you are planning to build or renovate before the end of 2020.



The project timeline below is definitely a photo to save to a Pinterest board I know you've started to hold all of your dream home inspiration (I still have them too!) I will point out a few things that always result in a more streamlined building process for the team you assemble, and for you and your sanity!


1. Hire your architect and interior designer at the same time. While you may think you don't need furniture until later on in the process, the interior designer's input earlier in the design process can make a big difference. While an architect designs more of the structure and exterior facade, an interior designer can come in and say the placement of a window doesn't make sense with the use of the room function on the interior, or the electrical plan needs to shift because the furniture won't be centered in the room (as the electrical plan may assume). The bottom line is that a team that works together from the beginning provides checks and balances throughout the process, and give you a better functioning home based on your needs.


2. Push for all team meetings as often as possible. This goes along with the previous point. The more everyone is in communication, the more everything overlaps and no one is confused about what is going on. This becomes even more critical during the building process, as the contractor is executing the details that the architect and interior designer have laid out in their spec books and construction documents.


3. Budget conversations help us stay on track as early as possible. Talking about money is never a comfortable thing, but I promise you that there is no judgment if you give us a straightforward answer to this question. I like to think about the wedding dress metaphor when we talk about budget. Have you ever watched an episode of 'Say Yes to the Dress' and watched a consultant show a dress that is completely out of the bride's price range because she wanted to see 'options', and she falls in love with it? And then agonizes trying to make it work in her head, only to leave sad and dressless? This happens a lot in the design industry as well. I would never want to show you a vintage rug that is $10,000 if your entire furnishing budget is $70,000. There are plenty of options out there in all different price ranges - be honest and realistic, and we will make it fabulous for you!




If you want a more detailed breakdown, be sure to download my Team + Timeline PDF here. Let me know below if you are moving forward with your home plans or pushing them into 2021. And as always, I'm here for any questions you have!

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Hi, I'm Madi!

When I'm not designing beautiful homes, I am at home in Ventura with my husband and three dogs. You will find me biking along the ocean, kayaking in the harbor, or looking for the best local tacos. 

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Madison Nicole Design is a full service interior design studio located in Santa Barbara, California. Madison and team take on projects of all sizes, from furniture styling to large scale remodels, locally and abroad via e-design services.

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