Whole Home Remodel Timeline
Remodeling your whole home is an exciting endeavor that will end with you and your family moving into a brand-new space. It can also be a bit of a mystery if you’ve not gone through the process before, particularly the timeline of a whole home remodel. You may have friends or family that have reported wildly different timelines for seemingly similar projects, making matters even more mysterious. To pull back the veil, we’ve broken down the entire home remodeling process into phases so you can get a better understanding of how long a home remodel will take.
How Long Does It Take to Remodel a Whole Home?
There are a lot of factors that will affect your unique home remodel. However, a timeline estimate for how long a smaller whole home remodel will take is between 7 to 12 months and a larger home could take between 9 and 16 months.
This doesn’t factor in unforeseen complications that could delay the process. To understand what phases take place during those timelines and what delays could arise, we’ve broken down the entire process here.
Phase 1: Discovery (2 weeks to 2 months)
This phase is driven by the homeowner. You will research area design-build teams, architects, and builders to determine what kind of building process you prefer and which professionals meet your style goals and preferences. Read reviews, get recommendations, look into their credentials, view their online portfolios, and be sure to ask them about their record for staying within budget and adhering to timelines. Researching and interviews will likely take anywhere from a couple of weeks to a couple of months, depending on your and their availability.
Phase 2: Pre-Design & Design (6 weeks to 4 months)
Once you’ve found the best team for your project, you can begin the assessment, consultation, and initial design meeting process. Your designer will visit your home, get an understanding of your home’s challenges, learn about your routines and how your home could serve you and your family better, and identify what your design style and goals are for your remodel.
From there, renderings can be made to reflect this information to help you visualize your new space. This phase requires a lot of collaboration to make sure the design and materials meet your goals. Every material, from flooring and siding to light fixtures and tile will be selected at this time. Your designer should keep you aware of material costs so your project can stay within budget, with no surprise overages.
Be sure to ask plenty of questions and to communicate if you don’t feel like a finish really fulfills your vision. The process of finding just the right fixture or finish can be expedited when you give as much design information as possible from the start. Your designer can gather plenty of choices within your style with a sufficient amount of guidance.
Your designer will likely make a couple of revisions based on your feedback. Don’t rush the design phase, but do come prepared to make a lot of decisions at once.
Phase 3: Pre-Construction (2 to 8 weeks)
Once your drawings are in hand, your designer or builder can acquire the necessary permits to get the job started. If your home is in a neighborhood with an HOA, they will also require approval to move forward. Homes in a historic district will likely take a bit longer to be approved for a remodel. Talk to your designer to understand the permitting requirements. They will likely handle all of the documentation but it’s a good idea to have some knowledge so you’ll know what to expect and how it’ll affect your timeline.
Pre-construction also includes ordering materials, creating schedules, and hiring subcontractors for specific parts of the project, like electricians, plumbers, and any specialty trades like tile workers and metalsmiths.
Phase 4: Construction (6 to 12 months)
The timeline for the demolition and construction of your home is so widely varied because it all depends on the size of your home, the complexity of your design, possible complications once what’s in the walls is revealed, and subcontractor schedules.
Factors That Can Affect the Remodel Timeline
Delays aren’t a guarantee but they are common, especially with so many factors that are out of the hands of your design-build team. Here are a few common complications that can cause a delay during your remodeling process.
Weather is one of the most unpredictable of all the possible delays. A thunderstorm, snow, sleet, or extreme temperatures can stall construction. Unfortunately, there’s no way to stop the weather, but if extreme weather is a concern during the time of year you’re planning your whole home remodel, you and your design-build team should build in extra days in the timeline to account for these uncertainties.
Construction Permits & HOA Delays
Typically, acquiring permits is a predictive process. However, if something is missing from your documentation or the design violates a municipal building code, your permit application can be delayed. This is why it’s important to thoroughly research the designers and builders you intend to work with and be certain they are experienced in building in your area.
It’s also possible that the permitting department could be experiencing backlogs, the HOA board is out of office due to a holiday, or another reason for delay that is out of your designer’s hands.
Delays Due to the Age of a Home
By knowing the age of a home and having a record of any work that’s been done in the past, your design-build team can have a good idea of the condition of the electrical and plumbing systems. What’s not easy to assess prior to demolition is if the work that was done was done up to code if it was a poor DIY job or other unforeseen issues.
Insect damage, water damage, improper framing, cracked foundation, mold, and poor support structures are all issues that have to be addressed before the construction of your design can move forward. Unfortunately, updates like these will accrue more time and costs. This is why a budget allowance is always recommended to avoid going over budget unexpectedly.
What Can a Homeowner Do to Keep a Project on Time
While hurrying any part of the project is ill-advised, there are things the homeowner can do, or not do, to reduce project delays. This includes:
Don’t Rush the Design Phase
Rushing through the design phase to get to construction as soon as possible will almost always have consequences. Rushing usually results in choosing materials that aren’t in line with your design goals, overlooking incorrect design details in the drawings while still approving them with your designer, and missing important budget line items.
How does this affect your timeline? When you rush the decision/design process, finishes and details that you weren’t aware of before construction could come up and you may want to make changes while construction is underway. This process is called a change order and can cause a delay and will likely result in adding to your project cost.
Be Available for Communication
Your project manager is likely going to need to reach out to you for a number of reasons. If you’ve gone out of town, are busy with work, or are otherwise often unreachable, delaying important decisions may impede progress. Luckily, many design-build firms use construction management software that enables easy file sharing, live schedule updates, and streamlined communication. Also, if you do need to make an out-of-town trip during your remodel, be sure to let your project manager know and offer alternative forms of communication, if necessary.
Your Unique Whole Home Remodel in Northeast Ohio
Now that you have more of an understanding of the home remodeling timeline, you likely have follow-up questions and concerns as to how your home will fit within this breakdown. To learn more about how your unique home remodeling plans will fall within this timeline, reach out to an experienced design-build team, like Payne & Tompkins Design + Renovations. We’ve designed and built custom home renovations for homeowners in Cuyahoga County for 20 years, exceeding expectations by focusing on trust, communication, and excellent design. When you’re ready to discuss your whole home remodel, contact Payne & Tompkins to set up a consultation.