I am in the process of securing funding to completely redo a master bath from the builder back in early ninetees. the master bath is app 115" x 97" layout with shower and tub, dual L shape sinks cabinets and vanity in middle, the toilet is inside walled area with door. there is a side window to outside that runs into cieling which I like to eliminate (at least the roof portion).
The ideas is to completely do a new design very modern with standalone tub, built up shower + steam and floating sinks. Any look we go with, we will need to apply to the additional two full baths (upstairs and downstairs guest rooms) and powder room, however I will do those later.
My questions are:
1) Should I hire a designer that would design the master and all bathrooms as separate activity/contract. Should i let the designer also do the contracting as well (he marks up everything under him) for total price and not hourly?
2) should I hire a contractor that provides design services
3) should I have designer spec out all the details and I become the contractor (assuming I can)?
4) None of the above, new option.
My concern in hiring a designer (on hourly basis) is that he may design something that would be totally out of my budget. and his/her services (on hourly basis) my require lot of money to get to detail level.
My concern in hiring a contractor with design services, i may not get best outcome and consistency thourghout the house?
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Check some friends or references and go with the design/build contractor. It's only bathrooms, any contractor that's been around a while has seen it all. Any that are design / build can do whatever a designer can, especially if you have a general idea as to what you want. Designers are a good idea if you have no clue at all as to style or look.
A contractor will cost you about 20%, adding in a designer will cost you 20% above that.
And admitting some bias, but the contractor is the primary, the designer should be working as a sub to the contractor. While most designers would rather it be the other way if that happens then you are paying the designers markup on the contractors labor, profit, insurance costs, materials - all things that the designer has no clue about and has no control over.
Designers are highly over rated, even with their nose in the air.
You've pretty much answered your own question as to hiring the designer as the lead. And YOU need to establish the budget before anyone begins, otherwise it's time wasted for both of you.
If you want the bathroom(s) redesigned, you must have reasons why, what you don't like and what you do want. Those should be your guidelines, not what a designer wants. Even if it's just a rough list or sketch, identify what you want done and go from there. Don't let someone else tell you what you need.
When I interviewed contractors for a lot of repair work on my sister's house, I always had a work scope which I gave them to price. But there were several who wanted to do "pie in the sky" projects and despite being told at least 2 or 3 times what I wanted they submitted quotes that were ridiculously out of my budget. I can't even imagine what a designer would have suggested, especially if it's someone who thinks that HGTV is the standard.
Contractors have doneo the leg and grunt work on projects; designers do the wishing aspects.
I go with Jaybee and Sparky on these issues.
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