Would a closet like the ones at the Container Store make your heart soar? Can a shoe rack make your lips smack? Do you fancy a new pantry? If you don’t know how to design a closet, this process can seem intimidating. In this video, I’ll share what I’ve learned in organizing and designing wardrobe and closet space for my clients and myself. These questions and strategies for working with closet companies (or not) can help you put the “ahh” back in your “clahhset”!
(Click here to watch on YouTube if you can’t see the embedded player. Or watch the video at http://bit.ly/tcdcustom1.)
Hi. I’m Lorie Marrero, creator of the Clutter Diet book and on-line program, and today we’re going to talk about how to choose a custom closet company. This is a very big decision with lots of factors, and it is so big that we’re going to chunk this up into two parts. So, part one right now, I’m going to focus on the process and the approach and some basic questions to ask about any company that you’re going to interview. And then, in part two we’re going to get into the nitty-gritty about the actual construction questions you need to ask when you’re interviewing those companies and all of those quality factors that are involved in the decision.
So first, let’s talk about where you are in this process. So, you’ve got probably a very simple closet. Most builders put in one rod and one shelf, and you’re thinking it might be a nice idea to have one of those custom closet companies come in and really build out your closet to your specifications for your needs. And that can be great, but the first question is, “Is this necessary?” I have worked with several clients where they thought they were going to do that, and then after working with me and actually just organizing the closet, they found that they pared everything down so much and bought maybe a couple of accessory pieces at a discount store, that they actually didn’t need the custom closet after all. So, that was a nice thing to know, but the smartest approach for this is to organize first, because if you have a closet company come in to do an estimate, what they’re going to do is count everything. So, they’re going to count how many shoes you have, how many handbags you have, and they’re going to measure the linear feet of hanging space that you require. And if you have way more than you need, they’re going to be designing that new closet around stuff that you are not going to have after this process is over. So, you want to right-size your closet to get ready for those estimates. And of course we can help you on-line with that. If you come into our Membership Program we can see the uploaded pictures of your closet and give you advice on that and help you get through that process so that you can get to the next step.
So then, you’re going to be interviewing some closet companies. So, just like any contractor relationship, you probably want to get a few bids. And you want to ask some questions on the phone that will help you understand who you’re working with. One of the first things you want to look at is the process they’re going to go through, so what will happen is they will come and do this estimate, and they will do the measuring and then usually what is going to happen is they are going to go back to their office and create designs for you. This is typically done for free, and then they probably will set a second appointment with you to present their designs. And at that second appointment, it can be very important for you to have all the decision makers present so that if you decide to move forward, you can do it quickly. Then it’s going to take, once you say yes, another few weeks for them to get all the parts cut and to schedule their install team. So, it does take a little while to get to through this process. You’re going to be able to spend either a few hundred dollars or several thousand dollars depending on the upgrades that you get and the types of materials that you choose, which we’re going to talk about in part two.
So, one of the first things you want to ask these companies on the phone is, “How long have you been in business?” “Are you a franchisee of a larger company?” And just kind of hear their story about that. You want to find out what warranty they offer. Does this warranty cover only you, or does it cover future owners of your home if you were to sell it? Also, what are the installation costs going to be? Does their price include ripping out the existing closet, patching, and painting, or is that something that you will be expected to do yourself, and if so, is that an opportunity for savings for you if you want to do that yourself? It actually can be kind of fun and therapeutic to rip out a closet. So you may want to do that. So think about those kinds of cost questions up-front.
Part two is coming next, and you can find out more about the very specific construction questions to ask about the materials that will help you gauge the value of the price you’re being quoted. See you in part two.
You may have been searching for closet organizations tips or affordable closet remodel.