PREPARE THE CLIENT

This chapter has detailed a process for assessing the needs of your client and gathering information necessary to design their bathroom. The process is extensive, but time spent on preparation will increase your success. Now that you are prepared, it’s never too early to start preparing your client. At the end of the interview and/or jobsite inspection, or when you present your design proposal or contract, spend a few minutes discussing both the design process as well as the construction phase.

First, discuss the time frame of the project. Present a realistic plan for each phase of the project. Indicate to your client what factors may delay the project, and why. Discuss what you will do to keep the project on target. Suggest what your client can do to keep the project on time, such as minimizing change orders.

Talk to your client about what you will need from them. If they are going to do any of the work themselves, such as tearing out or painting, be very clear as to the time frame. At what point will they be needed to review plans and make color or design choices? When will they need to make decisions about fixtures and accessories? When will they need personal items removed from the workspace?

In a bathroom project that involves an addition or remodeling, there will be disruption in your cli­ent’s home. Emphasize this with your client and reassure them you will do whatever you can to minimize that disruption. Preparing the client requires continuous communication, starting at the interview stage and continuing throughout the project.