The Finesse Experience

When you choose to work with a Design Build remodeling firm, we believe it’s all about the experience. With Finesse Design Remodeling, you’ll work directly with our partners throughout the entire process. From your initial consultation, through planning and design, to construction and completion of your project, we’re by your side sharing our more than 50 years of experience.

Our Design Build Process






Phase 1

Complimentary Consultation

The first step is to schedule your in-home complimentary consultation at a time convenient to you. When we meet, we’ll discuss your project goals and ideas, and identify any problems you may be having with your space. Once we understand the scope of work, we will discuss price ranges and timeframes for both the design and construction phases of your project.

Phase 2

Design and Concepts

Once your budget is aligned with the price range, we’ll move forward with design. We’ll prepare a design agreement and schedule a time to re-visit your home for an onsite job measure. From our measurements and notes, we’ll prepare an ‘as built’ CAD drawing that can be used to prepare multiple design concepts that include floor plans, elevations and 3D views. These will be shared with you in an open discussion.

We encourage your feedback at each step. You may choose one of the concepts exactly as it is, or may like elements of different designs that we can combine into one final concept. We’ll discuss the pros and cons of each concept and revise the drawings to suit your style and your needs. When the design is completed and approved to our mutual satisfaction, we’ll schedule a walk-through in your home with our pertinent subcontractors to finalize pricing.

Phase 3

Permits and Selections

We’ll start with a signed construction agreement that includes job pricing, start and substantial completion dates, a construction schedule, and a schedule of allowances for fixtures and finishes selections. From there, we’ll begin converting the plans from concepts to permit drawings, and obtain the necessary permits.

Next, we’ll schedule to meet with you at our vendors’ showrooms to make your selections of finishes and fixtures, and to manage the budget with them. If you cannot schedule a meeting at the showrooms, we can bring samples to you.

Phase 4

Pre-Construction and Construction

We start with a pre-construction meeting with you at your home where we’ll discuss our access to the home, temporary protection placement to adjacent spaces, materials staging areas, pet management, and what to expect your first week. Throughout demolition and construction, a project manager will be on the job site. And you will receive regular progress reports on your project status. We believe in open communication, and encourage you to contact us at any time should you have questions or concerns.

Once your project is substantially complete, we will schedule a walkthrough with you to identify any items that need to be addressed to complete the project.

Phase 5


Finesse Design Remodeling stands behind our workmanship for two years. You will be provided with a comprehensive warranty plan, and we’ll follow up with a call at the end of your first and second years to make sure you still love your new space.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of our most Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). If you do not see your question here, please feel free to Contact Us.

Design-build describes a remodeling project delivery system whereby the design and construction services are delivered by one company.

There are a number of benefits to working with a design-build remodeling firm, with the biggest being that your entire project is managed under one roof, with one team—from design to construction. You’ll be able to make quick design decisions, ask questions in real time, and complete your project faster.

Finesse Design Remodeling specializes in remodeling homes in Washington, DC. (See Areas We Serve in our About section.)
On our first conversation, you don’t need to prepare anything. We’ll ask you questions about your ideas, needs, lifestyle and budget range, and talk about how we work with clients. To start, we want to make sure we’re a good fit for each other. If we are, we’ll then schedule a visit to get a better understanding of your property.
You’ll work closely with Finesse Design Remodeling’s team of experienced and creative designers who will bring your vision to life. Our design team is led by our partner Elizabeth Mitchel, who is a creative force! There isn’t any design challenge she hasn’t been able to solve!
We describe our design and construction process on our Process page.
Yes, we can. When you work in an historic district in Washington, DC it is important that we know the ins and outs of permitting and historic review boards. Our partner Brian Bielski is an expert at using his creativity and sense of aesthetics to figure out the challenges of not only restoring historic properties, but incorporating new renovations seamlessly into the original structure to enhance functionality and flow. We’ve won awards for a number of our historic DC home remodels!
Permits are required in an historic district, and condo boards will require them as well. Any structural changes to your home, like taking out walls, adding windows, or building onto your house will require a building permit. But there’s nothing you need to do. Our team is well versed in DC’s requirements and will take care of the permitting process to ensure your project proceeds smoothly.
Each project is unique. After we meet with you, we will review your wants, needs and existing space and present you with estimates of costs, based on various design options. You decide what to spend.
We do everything we can to control costs and stick to the budget. We’re proud of our on-time and on-budget successes. Sometimes, however, unforeseen problems can appear when we open the walls or floors. We just can’t anticipate them because they aren’t apparent to the naked eye. At other times, our clients want to make a change after we’ve set the budget. If it looks like additional funds are needed, we communicate with you and when approved, we create a change order, which is agreed to and signed off by all parties.
Open and honest communication is key to the success of your remodeling project. You will be assigned a dedicated project manager who will communicate the job’s progress with you on a regular basis. You will also receive weekly progress reports. Since we are a small remodeling firm, we encourage you to reach out to our partners if at any time you have a question or concern.
Finesse Design Remodeling uses employees on our client projects so that we can ensure the quality of work our clients have come to expect. We do occasionally need to bring in an outside subcontractor for specific or out-of-the-ordinary assignments, and use our vetted resources when needed.
For most remodeling projects, you can remain in your home, although you will need to make some adjustments in your living arrangements. We’ll need access to the rooms we’re remodeling and we’ll want to put up barriers to secure the rest of your home from construction dust or debris. If you are undergoing a whole house remodel, or major structural changes, we may recommend that you move out of your house for a short while.
Finesse Design Remodeling warranties its workmanship for a full 24 months after project completion. If you notice anything that needs to be fixed, or need our assistance during that time, please Contact Us. You will also receive applicable manufacturers’ warranties.
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