Bear Creek Design Group
“BCDG has completed more than a thousand projects in the Evergreen foothills area.“
The experts at Bear Creek Design Group (BCDG) have a passion for remodeling. Development of the project is as exciting to them as the construction, and almost as exciting as seeing the families inside their new spaces.
While the prospect of turning the house you have into the home you’ve been dreaming of is exciting, the journey to get there has potential pitfalls to navigate. Challenges begin with the reality of entrusting your home and a substantial amount of money to someone you don’t really know.
The professionals at BCDG understand these challenges and specialize in making the process as seamless as possible in order to avoid those pitfalls, starting from the initial client meeting. They offer these points to consider when choosing a remodeling contractor.
- Construction is only one of many steps in a remodeling project.
Most people think of the construction phase when they think of remodeling, but that is only one part of the project. Remodeling also requires developing a budget, a design (architectural and finish) and a construction plan. These preplanning steps are critical to the success of the project, though often given only a fraction of the attention they deserve.
BCDG believes the client’s experience is far better when the builder, designer and homeowner develop a project portfolio and budget together as a cohesive plan for achieving an end result the client loves. Avoid developing a project plan around a bid; too much information is missing.
- Effective communication is critical.
Often, remodeling projects fail because much of the information resides in the head of individuals, and may be lost or forgotten. Those who work on your project must be able to show how they manage and share project information. Ask about internal meetings, where data is stored as well as how and when information will be provided to you. This is as important as having skilled tradespeople on your project.
BCDG relies on a centralized project management software to store information. Data, notes and to-do’s are input regularly so that all information is available to everyone involved. Routine meetings occur between project managers, designers and office staff to go over project notes.
- Local builders are experts in their regions, not just in construction.
Make sure your builder understands the nuances of our mountain community, including specific county codes and requirements. These items should be discussed early in the project’s development as they can impact construction costs dramatically. Do not wait until after the design is complete. Well-informed clients make well-informed decisions.
BCDG has completed more than a thousand projects in the Evergreen foothills area. Their professional staff brings their knowledge to the table early on to save time and help clients make smart decisions. Through their portfolio development process, budgets, designs and aesthetics remain better aligned.
- Scheduling management shouldn’t be a homeowner’s nightmare.
Managing the various tradespeople involved takes a degree of precision and organization. To prevent delays and additional costs, work is done in a particular order and as timely as possible. Schedules, calendars and construction software programs are all useful tools. If you really want to know how well a company manages timelines and resources, ask to see a current schedule. The builder should have one readily available. Also ask about overall timelines, how long the different phases take, and how timelines are tracked and met.
BCDG develops a design schedule that has a start date, specific checkpoints and a completion date. Then, the work schedule locks in time for ordering and pre-job preparation, a start date, field checkpoints and a completion date. Dates are reviewed by their team weekly.
An integrated system manages the entire schedule from start and end dates to the scheduling of the individual phases. This allows BCDG to coordinate where tradespeople are in their work and eliminates any pending conflicts well before they create delays.
- Solid solutions replace shortcuts.
There is an important distinction between doing something differently and correctly for less money (a solution) and doing something differently and incorrectly to save money (a shortcut). Shortcuts may sound appealing, but a shortcut touted as a benefit should be a red flag. For example, if contractors suggest skipping permits, will they be okay tearing through asbestos and spreading it through your house, or bypassing codes on a deck that decreases its lifespan by 20 years?
BCDG’s approach is to begin by working with clients to develop a projection. That first draft may seem to be too comprehensive and expensive, but its depth is intentional so it can be edited and adjusted to align with the client’s budget by adjusting the scope, not by taking shortcuts.
- Financial information should not be a moving target.
The financial management of your project should be transparent and the details of how your money is spent throughout should be readily available to you. Choose to work with a company that has defined financial processes with appropriate checks and balances. These systems should include the company’s own accounts receivable and accounts payable, as well as the financial management of your project. Draw systems tend to result in a void of information and create the financial management challenges homeowners fear. Real-time data and budget reports will greatly improve your interaction with the project.
BCDG uses a retainer accounting system rather than draws. This allows for the weekly review of project line item postings. BCDG also uses and provides regular real-time budget reports that show a comparison between what was estimated, what has been invoiced to date and any difference between the two. Changes to the portfolio are then propagated throughout the project’s construction activities.
- Job safety and COVID-19 are a priority.
While job site safety is a top priority for most companies and homeowners, COVID-19 has presented an additional challenge this year. Find a company that understands the needs of a COVID-19 world. The company should assume that this is a concern to the homeowner and act accordingly.
BCDG has its own processes to maintain a safe working and home environment during a remodel, and has invested heavily in UVC lighting systems that are run at specified times to fully sanitize work areas, eliminate trade-to-trade transmission and to ensure the work area is safe at night for the homeowner. The company’s proprietary systems also include the type of plastic used, defined separation of rooms and use of masks.
Every member of Bear Creek Design Group is passionate about remodeling. They love what they do, the way the homes they remodel look and feel when they are done, and the positive responses they get from homeowners. They want remodeling to be what it should be: an exciting and rewarding experience for everyone involved. That can only happen with shared knowledge and people you trust. BCDG integrates impeccable management, incomparable quality and unparalleled results into every step of every project.
When BCDG comes out to meet with you, don’t expect the stereotypical first visit. Expect them to start managing your job the second they walk through the door, whether you hire them or not. Expect them to talk to you about sending concept projection costs, not a bid. And expect them to want to sit down with you, not to talk you “into” those costs, but to talk to you “about” those costs as they begin to develop a portfolio that works for you.
BCDG was voted one of the Top 100 Mountain Builders in the national Mountain Living Magazine. BCDG is a longstanding, trusted brand made up of local folks that would love to help.
Get started on your remodel! Call the office at 303.997.6628 or visit BearCreekDesignGroup.com