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From the biggest new house project to a small interior renovation, your construction project will be an exciting but potentially unsettling process at times if you don’t prepare yourself going in.

Based on our experience looking at past projects, here are 5 key things to make your project a success.

  1. Understanding: Take some time to look over the eight project phases below and understand how your project will move from one phase to the next. You don’t have to understand all of the tasks that your designer and contractor will perform but knowing that for example, a structural engineer will likely be involved in phase 3 to determine if there are structural impacts will help you get a sense of who contributes what on the project.
  2. Objectives: Work with someone to help plan your project early. And for best results that someone should be a person that can bring an outside perspective into the situation that will ask questions to help you prioritize your objectives for your project.
  3. Research: Do research before the project starts by researching online at your favorite design blog, going to stores and talking to friends and colleagues who have gone through the process before. They can help give you a sense of what to expect and maybe even some things that worked successfully for them.
  4. Outlook– This is an exciting process but things will come up that are unforeseen so it will require a bit of resilience and tenacity to help you maintain an open mind. Be ready to discuss solutions to help move the project forward.  These might be a bit different from your initial thoughts but this is where the process can evolve and where something better can be created through discussion with your project team. Remember also that the members of your project team are experts in their specific areas but need contributions from you to help them understand what you want to achieve (see also 2 above).
  5. Participate: Be ready to become an active participant and collaborator in the process so that builds on your understanding of what is coming next and the overall flow of your project.

For most projects, the work process includes the following deliverables in a traditional process to get to a drawing and document set that can be submitted to a municipality for necessary approvals to obtain a Building Permit. For some projects the steps could be combined together. This is not to say that all design professionals will work in the exact same manner with the exact same deliverables.

Project Phases and Deliverables

  1. Preliminary Research and Discovery Phase
  2. Schematic Design
  3. Design Development
  4. Planning Variance Process
  5. Permit and Construction Documents
  6. Tender Documents Review and Guidance
  7. Tender Negotiation and Contract Signing
  8. Construction Management

Download our FREE Guide to Feeling More In Control of the Construction Process e-book to get more information on the process 

Do you have any suggestions for what’s worked for you on your project? Add them to the comments below!

So, what do you think ?