Ahhh, Houzz, the place where people in the market for remodeling go to covet and swoon. If you haven’t checked it out, grab a glass of water before you do, lest you drool yourself dry. Photographs of incredible interiors abound on Houzz—from homeowners, designers, and contractors alike—making it a great place to start if you’re undertaking a remodeling project.
The only real challenge with using sites like Houzz is that it takes a lot of imagination to judge if and how a design that’s visually inspiring to you would work within your own home and budget. Fear not: Someone else can do the creative thinking behind putting the Houzz in your home, and you probably won’t have to pay a dime for the help. It’s called an in-home remodeling consultation.
An in-home remodeling consultation is obviously essential work for a remodeling contractor to generate a bid. Unfortunately, such consults often amount to just that—a way for contractors to quickly judge the costs of the things you say you want, so that they can figure out how to make it financially worth their trouble. You tell them you want a new countertop. They ask you what material. You say concrete. They take some measurements, then move on to the next piece—let’s say a different backsplash. They ask you what kind. You show them a picture of a glass-tiled one. They nod and say okay and ask what colors and take the measurements. On to the next item, and blah, blah, blah. There’s no creative juice flowing at a time when it should be overflowing!
What an in-home consult can be (and, in our opinion, should be) is a time for the contractor to help your imagination take flight within the confines of your budget. It’s a time to connect the dots between the inspirational pictures you pulled off Houzz, and the potential of the space you’re having remodeled. Good remodeling contractors will use a consult to really interview you, look at your pictures, and get a sense of your style. They’ll walk the space with you. They’ll offer problem-solving ideas instead of forcing you to do all the creative thinking. They’ll suggest alternatives when that Houzz photo you love proves impractical to replicate, perhaps due to price tags or your space’s limitations.
A good remodeling contractor won’t use consultation time for you to just tell them how you want things to LOOK. They’ll ask you what you want your space to DO and how you want it to FEEL. Then they’ll lead you towards solutions that suit you. It’s the surest way to create spaces people love, by taking the time to understand more about what makes their hearts go pitter-pat. We offer them for free, because we get it!