Now that we have spent the better part of the last 12 months inside our homes, we have all become intimately familiar with the good, the bad, and the not-so-desirable aspects of our homes. The last 12 months have offered insight into what makes a perfect home. For each of us, this ideal is different — yet many have pivoted and worked to shape their homes into a central hub of work, family, entertainment, play, and education in a way none of us have ever imagined.
COVID has enhanced the desire for a perfectly designed home.
A major home remodel is generally not something one does every day. Many have no idea where to begin. Some simply know their existing home layout is not working and desire solutions that are increasingly practical, aesthetic, and efficient.
This can range from a minor home improvement to a major home redesign and remodel.
Many of our clients have the initial very basic question — do I need an architect or a builder? They find themselves Googling “Best Architect in Boston” or “Trusted Home Remodeler Boston.” Many simply give up on this cold research and call a real estate professional they trust for an experienced recommendation (generally a wise move).
Where is square zero in the home remodel process? What is the best way to proceed so as to achieve the desired result in a creative and cost-efficient manner within the expected timeframe? Where does one even begin?
Here at NEDC we view ourselves as a creative brush for the client’s personal vision — our task is to work directly with you to draw out and understand your personal vision for your home, then translate this into an aesthetic and sustainable design that can be executed within your budget. We factor our decades of building experience into our design work and plan with cost fully in mind — so you are not surprised at the end of the design process for a project costing twice or thrice your budget to build. Yes — this can easily happen.
Change orders (a dreaded term in this industry) are minimized with our architectural design-build process as we embrace the entire client process from beginning to end — soup to nuts. We build what we plan — there are very few surprises, and we are fully accountable for the entire project.
If you are considering a major home remodel but are uncertain where to begin — this is totally normal.
Here is what we would advise — grab a journal or your laptop and do the following:
1. Write down clearly the top five or so issues with your home you are seeking to resolve. Keep it simple at this stage. Then describe your ideal home as regards layout, feel, and aesthetic. What are key aspects you value and desire? Use this FREE printable to help you get organized!
2. Reflect on sustainable design. Be mindful of sustainability and our earth as you craft your vision and take care to educate yourself accordingly. We strongly encourage a sustainable approach to home design and remodeling. The ultimate in environmentally friendly eco-homes today is the passive house.
A passive house requires 90% less energy than a normal home and does not require a heater or air conditioner. Heating occurs passively from the occupant’s body heat, the sun, appliances, and interior lights. This innovative design markedly improves the interior air quality of the home, saves significantly on the heating bill, and is far better for the environment — greatly reducing the home’s carbon footprint.
NEDC passive house remodels offer:
· A drastically reduced carbon footprint
· Improved interior air quality
· 90% less energy consumption than a customary home
Check out this example of how a Texas passive house retrofit survived the recent extreme weather in Texas.
Or, for a more local look at a passive house retrofit, take a look at this beautiful custom design we are currently building in Somerville.
3. Create a digital collection of design inspiration — kitchens, bathrooms, master suites, home additions, etc. that you absolutely love the look of. Pinterest and Houzz are both great resources for this. We also love and recommend the following for design inspiration: Modern Luxury, Architectural Digest, Rue, and HomeByMe.
4. Download the NEDC cost guide at no charge. You are welcome to use our resources — we encourage this. Our cost guide may be used to get a realistic approximation of what you will be dealing with financially and to draw inspiration from other projects done in the Boston area.
Our blog also offers substantial insight and experience from decades of experience in the Boston home design and remodeling business that may be of value to you.
5. Reach out to us! We are more than happy to speak to you for a design consultation at no cost and see if we can help you achieve your dream home. If we can help we will!