Jan asked some great questions and Megan and Ted provided some excellent information not only about Schloegel Design Remodel but the industry as well. They discussed Client Communications, projects coming in on time and budget and what a design build firm is.
They first discussed communication and how Schloegel communicates the progress and status of a project to their clients. Schloegel uses a combination of email, calls, and texts for day to day communication with homeowners. Clients also have access to a website where they can see daily updates and photos.
One of the more most valuable elements of Schloegel’s communication to homeowners is the weekly onsite meetings. The lead carpenter, designer and often project manager sit with the homeowner each week to discuss the project and how it is going. The team provides an agenda with outstanding items and decisions to be made. Then they discuss whether the project is on or off track. If it is off track they determine what they need to do to get it back on track. This meeting not only keeps all parties up to date on the project but provides an identified time each week make decisions so that is not a project hold up.
On Time and On Budget
This term often seems like a unicorn within the remodeling industry but for Schloegel this is the expectation with every single project. GuildQuailty surveys show that 95% of Schloegel’s projects come in on time. Jan asks Megan and Ted how does this happen? Megan discusses the importance of the design process in determining the final design and agreeing to a final budget. She also mentions there are things that often come up once the project starts, especially in old homes. When this happens, the team lets the client know as soon as possible so a solution can be determined and construction can move forward to stay on track.
Jan asks Ted how Schloegel determines the length of the project and whether a magic 8 ball is used. Ted says they base schedules on volume per week and determine length by the cost of the contract and then adjust accordingly. Schloegel has determined different guidelines over the years that can vary but provide a relative idea.
They discussed how waiting on cabinets can often impact the length of a project. Megan says that is the first thing that is ordered once a contract is signed. Schloegel works with three different cabinet lines and they offer anything from pre-made standard sizes to custom designed and ordered.
Design Build Firm
In a design build firm the process first starts in design with a client. During the design process the subcontractors, electricians, etc. are brought in to ensure everybody is on board and knows what the design is. All of the design work is established before construction starts. This way there is a plan with specific materials and a clear scope of work. Once the design is finalized the team moves into the build portion and Schloegel’s production team is put together for the project and starts the construction. The designer on each project is involved from the first appointment all the way through the final presentation of your kitchen or bathroom.
They also discussed how fixtures, cabinets, hardware, flooring, and appliances are selected. Schloegel has a showroom within their offices where clients can see materials in person. Sometimes there is a need to go to other showrooms around the city if they’re looking for something specific in a project.
Towards the end of the segment, Jan talked about a very important point in remodeling projects that isn’t often discussed. The importance of liking the people working in your home. They can be part of your everyday life for weeks, months or even a year. You’ll get to know these people very well and they may see you at your worst.
Jan also provided a tip to homeowners, “Have your contractor commit. Make them show you the schedule and plan of attack. If someone tells you it is going to be three to six months ask them is it going to take three or is it going to take six? If they are planning properly they should know exactly how long it is going to take.”
Great job Megan and Ted!
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