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  • Tom O'Brien

A Remodeler's Perspective

I hope, in these posts to share some of my perspective as someone who has remodeled peoples' homes for over 40 years. It takes a distinctly different approach to remodel an existing home than to design and build a new one. There are remodelers who use additions as a way to approach the benefits of new construction - simple estimating and predictability. My approach has always been to try to work within a home's existing footprint. This requires accepting certain limitations but also may open unforeseen approaches to problems.

This perspective also makes me think differently about how we construct elements of a house. I am always thinking of the next remodel and how an approach might hinder or facilitate the next changes a family needs. One could draw an analogy between the contrast between new construction and remodeling and that between creationism and evolution. As a remodeler I see a home as something in process rather than as something fixed in time.

My role then is closer to that of a midwife than to that of a builder. My goal is to take the imaginations, frustrations and desires you have for your home and seed them into the space you inhabit. Then together we can nurture the growth of these seeds into the ecosystem that is your home. They will displace some existing plants and join with others to produce the next season of your home.

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