The importance of being flexible when remodeling

I am waving the white flag of surrender. I am laying down any prior presumptions I may have once had about a client’s relationship with their contractor. I arrogantly wrote a few weeks ago about how calm and cool I was being about my basement renovation by not over shopping and about being so harmonious. The following is a humorous but true recap of the last 48 hours of my life.

In two days my life has gone from ‘oh, we aren’t sure when the drywall is starting’ to ‘drywall is coming tomorrow – have you ordered the bathroom taps? They need to be here now.’

I am writing this a little capriciously but the timelines they are shouting about are real and I have had to make several phone calls and visits to plumbing stores to make all of this happen. The first ones I chose were back ordered (of course they were) and the second ones were not the right ones for my vanity. I really need to stop right here and admit to everyone that yes, I chose the wrong taps for my vanity. I am ashamed and humbled that even 15 years being a designer didn’t exempt me from this foolish mistake.

Moving on from that silly blunder, I was able to find some wonderful bathroom fixtures with the help of two very accommodating sales people from different supply stores. They were both pleasant and professional and didn’t seem to mind my changes or the frantic pace I was running at. I am extremely grateful for their help and thrilled with the products that were eventually ordered.

The hilarious thing is, I thought I had it all under control. I had prearranged everything and was convinced that I had a handle on all the products going into my basement. Imagine my shock when I realized I had forgotten about bathroom taps and showerhead. Never take your bathroom fixtures for granted readers, they travel a great distance and can cost a small fortune. Most clients visit me at the move in stage of their home wanting window coverings as they realize that their neighbours can see every move they make. The panicked look that crosses their face when I tell them that blinds are three weeks delivery is now completely understandable. I mean, I did understand it before but now I feel the panic in my soul – it has gone from understanding to empathy; head to heart if you will.

The trick to this is to be malleable, even boneless like a jellyfish. Let these setbacks and worry roll off you as you move on to the stuff you can work on. Fretting and worrying about a back ordered tap when the contractor wants one now is hard on your soul and makes the renovation process no fun. Will I be just as happy with a different model of tap or is my future happiness hinging on having that exact model? Doubtful, onward and upward to the next available taps.

So be cheered fellow home improvement-ers, hope is in sight! Even though your original plan may be thwarted by the plagues and pestilence of long shipping dates and back ordered merchandise, you will rise and find products at the ready with a little perseverance and a firm word to your contractor – I am working on it!

Kim Meckler is an interior designer in Red Deer with Carpet Colour Centre.

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