A lot of planning should be done before the remodel begins, and if this is done well, your project will go smoothly.
The first phase should be carried out by the homeowner; researching contractors and checking references. Go to your local NAHB website (www.nahb.org) and the BIAW (www.biaw.com), as well as the Labor and Industry website to check that a contractor’s licenses and insurance are up to date. Call references; this will give you a good picture of their quality of work and how easy they are to work with.
Depending on the extent of your remodel project, several licensed professionals will be required. A general contractor will vet the specialists, hire, and schedule them. Bathroom and kitchen remodels may require these specialists:
- Tile setters
- Cabinet makers
That said, the obvious thing is, when the bathroom is being torn about and put back together, you won’t be able to use it. Hopefully you have another one in the house?
Don’t forget to consider “Universal Design”, also called “Aging in Place” features to include in your remodel. You or your visitors may find the features handy, and they can increase the resale value of your home, as it will be accessible to more potential buyers when that day comes.
So, how will the project affect you? It can be stressful, but the rewards will be worth it!
Charting the moods during construction projects
If you or a loved one is having a difficult time staying in their own home, but wishes to remain independent, what can you do? CAPS (Certified Aging in Place Specialist), and Universal Design were developed to provide solutions to this dilemma.
When a contractor who is a Certified-Aging-in-Place Specialist is called in to assist in determining what changes need to be made to the home, he or she will perform an audit. This audit includes a floor plan, dimensions of areas being used, and capacities, conditions, and limitations affecting potential construction or modification. This information plus information from the client’s health care professional is used to make an evaluation and define a scope of work.
While still governed by applicable building codes, the CAPS trained contractor is free to offer a range of solutions aesthetically pleasing to residential clients over the more sterile, hospital like approach of the pure accessibility design seen in commercial construction. Knowing what equipment and materials are available for those with accessibility issues is part of the training and body of knowledge the CAPS professional has at his fingertips. A bathroom, for instance, can be re-designed to accommodate a person with accessibility or stability issues, and still be stylish.
We have experience and training in helping clients upgrade bathrooms to make them more accessible. Give us a call if you would like to see what we can do to upgrade your bathroom.
If you don’t require a fully CAPS designed bathroom, consider incorporating universal design. It is intended to ensure that a project is useful for people of all ages, abilities and sizes. Among the upgrades: Replace lower toilets or sinks with taller options that require less stooping or bending; replace bathtubs with low-threshold showers that have seats and grab bars. Faucets with blade-style handles work better for those with problems with manual dexterity.
Stylish tile trim, built in seat, grab bar and hand held shower wand.