In the July issue of Housetrends we introduced you to lifestyle blogger Katey Haines as she was about to undertake a major kitchen remodel. We recently checked in with Katey and asked how things are going. Here she shares her answers along with project manager Zach Tisdale from the team at Dave Fox Design-Build Remodelers.
HT: Katey, how’s your family holding up?
KH: Overall, pretty well. Our house is set up in a way that we can shut ourselves off from where the work is being done. Despite the plastic sheets that were hung to contain the dust, the surrounding rooms are definitely still a bit dusty—but that doesn’t seem to bother anyone else in my family but me.
We have a bar area downstairs that we’re using as a kitchen. It has a sink and a microwave. It’s our “new” kitchen for the moment. Plus, we grill out a lot. We’re finding lots of new ways to use our grill and smoker.
HT: Zach, what does your team do to control the dust?
ZT: Before we start any job, we protect the floors with plastic or runners. Then we install plastic barrier walls with zippered doors. We tape furnace filters to return air vents to catch the dust before it gets to the furnace or air conditioner. Most of the dust comes at the drywall sanding stage. We try hard to contain it but sometimes it gets past the barriers.
HT: Katey, what have you learned that would be helpful to other homeowners about to take on a project like this?
KH: I would definitely recommend doing the construction when the weather is warmer and you can eat outside. But even with that in mind, you can only create so many meals without a true kitchen. So, we’ve been dining out a lot. That is a piece of advice I will share: Factor that cost into your budget. You will most likely spend a lot more money than normal on meals out.
HT: Katey, have there been any surprises or any adjustments to the original plan?
KH: Once the wall was torn down, we realized it might have been a good idea to make the dining window larger. But due to lead time for windows and zoning requirements, that would have extended the timeline on the renovation. We may revisit that at a later date.
For the most part, everything, knock on wood, has gone according to plan. Dave Fox does such a thorough job beforehand. Plus Zach keeps us updated. That’s helpful.
HT: Zach, how do you communicate with the client?
ZT: I send out an email with a quick recap of what we’ve accomplished that week and a timeline of what we hope to accomplish over the next three weeks. I will be the first to admit that it’s not a perfect system. Sometimes things don’t go as planned, but it gives the homeowner a good idea of what they can expect.
HT: Zach, have there been any materials or shortage delays impacting this project?
ZT: Kitchen appliances are the biggest slow down. We always install them at the end of the project but we like having them on site to get the exact measurements to make sure they fit clean and tight with a good reveal. By just going by the manufacturer specs, we are taking a leap of faith that the dimensions they list are accurate.
Cabinets are taking up to 24 weeks to arrive. We had all the cabinets on hand before beginning this project, but a couple came in damaged. The manufacturer makes replacing them a priority, but that still takes upwards of four to six weeks.
HT: Katey, are you to a stage where you can visualize the “after” yet?
KH: Once the cabinets were installed, it really made the kitchen take shape for us. It was exciting for sure. We still have a long way to go, but I can see the finish line.
In our next issue of Housetrends, we’ll reveal the finished kitchen and see what Katey loves about her new space and what, if anything, she would do differently if she were to do it all over again. In the meantime, follow along on Instagram @davefoxdesignbuild and @twopeasinablog.
Dave Fox Design-Build Remodelers, Interior Design
Manager: Michelle Mixter, CKBD, Allied ASID; Design
Consultant/Sales Director: Steve Dempsey
Countertops Cambria from Midwest Quartz
Cabinets Omega Cabinets
Faucets and sink Ferguson
Backsplash tile Hamilton Parker
Photography CT Photo Memories