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PRO
Artisan Kitchens Inc.

Being in a resort area we do second-home projects all the time and it can work a few ways, but it's best to allow yourself at least a couple of months for planning before you want work to begin.

1.) Typically we meet with the client when they are in residence, do all the concept work, designing, and material selections together, then do the remodeling in the
off-season when they're not there. So if it's a winter home, do the planning in the winter and remodel in the summer, and vice versa.

2.) If it's a new purchase and you don't plan to live there until it's renovated, the same pre-planning time frame would apply but there should ideally be a few in-person meetings, especially to select materials (don't ever trust emailed photos to be true to color). Most of the rest can be accomplished via emailed plans and product photos. Bear in mind that this might make it take a little longer because the back-and-forth of emails is not as fast as the immediate feedback of a face-to-face meeting.

3.) If you love and trust your designer, let them put it all together for you while you're not there. This can sometimes be the only way to accomplish a project if the client is really far away from the residence or the designer is really far away from the project.

We recently designed a kitchen all the way across the country and it was all done by email. Can't wait to see how it turns out!

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Dixie
@jskss We’re renovating the kitchen and adding a full bath in our vacation cabin in another state. We hired a designer there, who worked with our contractor there, to put the design together. All of my communications with our designer were via email, text and phone. She came up with the perfect design, and I still haven’t met her in person. We have a meeting set up later this year when we’re there for vacation. I like her so much, we’re planning to hire her again, this time to manage the project. I know it sounds costly, but we have a budget ( money we’ve saved for the past 10 years for this project). She will stay within our budget, (she advised we add a “contingency” amount for unforeseen problems that could arise). I will still be actively involved with some of the decision making, but I won’t have to worry about “who, what and when”. Her professional services cost much less than one might expect, but to me her skills have been priceless!
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PRO
Jennifer Butler Design

Joey this is a great point. We work with clients from all over the country who have lake homes / vacation residences in Michigan, in much the same way. Being local allows us to make quick decisions, source easily and work with the local team - who have often already been collaborators on a project with us. Google Hangouts / Facetime / Email and similar technologies have advanced to the point where we can execute successful partnerships from across the world!

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