How to Plan for a Major Renovation in Maryland

Is a major home renovation project on your list for 2024? Whether you’re looking to build an addition, update your kitchen, finish a basement, or remodel multiple rooms, proper planning is essential for a smooth and successful project in Maryland.

At Cornerstone Remodeling, we’ve guided countless homeowners through the renovation process. We understand that preparing for major construction can seem overwhelming at first. But breaking it down into key steps will ensure your remodel stays on track.

Define Your Project Goals & Scope

The first step is to clearly define what you want to accomplish with the renovation. Are you adding square footage with a room addition? Creating an open floorplan by knocking down walls? Upgrading cabinets, countertops, and appliances? Modernizing baths? Replacing mechanical systems?

Make a checklist of all the areas and features you want to include in the project scope. At this stage, nail down your total project budget as well. This will guide decision-making throughout.


For major structural work, additions, or comprehensive whole-house renovations, you’ll need architectural plans. To streamline the design and construction process, consider hiring a design-build remodeling firm like Cornerstone that has in-house architectural capabilities. With our team of architects, designers, and construction experts under one roof, we can handle every phase of your major renovation from ideation to implementation.

Obtain Necessary Permits

Once you have drawings, you’ll need to submit them for the proper permits. Permitting requirements can vary from county to county in Maryland, so consult your local planning and zoning office. For additions or exterior work, you’ll likely need a building permit from the county. Kitchen and bath remodels usually require permits as well, for electrical and plumbing work.

Plan for Temporary Logistics

For larger whole-home remodels, it’s often advisable to temporarily relocate during the messy demolition and construction phases. If you plan to live on site, prepare for noise, dust, and disruptions to essential utilities like electricity, water, and HVAC systems. Talk to your contractor about measures to contain dust and maintain safety.

You may need to rent a portable storage container or POD to securely store furniture and belongings. Make childcare arrangements if you have kids or pets. Identify friends or family you can stay with during intensive phases of the work.

Build Your Project Schedule

Creating a comprehensive project schedule is crucial for ensuring that your major renovation stays on track and progresses smoothly. Your contractor, in collaboration with their team and subcontractors, will meticulously craft a detailed timeline that outlines every step of the construction process. This schedule will encompass various stages, starting from the initial demolition and site preparation to the final touches of interior finishes.

Firstly, the demolition phase will involve the removal of any existing structures or elements that are being replaced or modified as part of the renovation. Following this, the framing stage will commence, where the skeletal framework of the new or modified space is constructed, providing the structural support for the project.

Next, the electrical and plumbing work will be carried out to ensure that all wiring, piping, and fixtures are installed correctly and in compliance with building codes and safety regulations. This phase is critical for setting up the essential infrastructure that will power and supply water to your renovated space.

Once the electrical and plumbing systems are in place, insulation will be installed to regulate temperature and energy efficiency within the structure. This step is essential for maintaining comfortable indoor conditions and reducing heating and cooling costs.

Subsequently, drywall installation will commence, providing the walls and ceilings with a smooth and uniform surface for painting or other finishing treatments. Flooring installation will follow, with a wide range of options available, including hardwood, tile, carpet, and laminate, to suit your aesthetic preferences and practical needs.

Millwork, such as trim, molding, and cabinetry, will then be installed to add architectural detail and functional storage solutions to your space. Countertops made from materials such as granite, quartz, or marble will be fitted in kitchens and bathrooms, providing durable and attractive surfaces for daily use.

Finally, the finishing touches, including painting, tiling, and hardware installation, will be completed to enhance the visual appeal and functionality of your renovated space. Throughout each stage of the construction process, thorough inspections will be conducted to ensure that quality standards are met and any issues are promptly addressed.

It’s essential to review and understand this detailed timeline provided by your contractor, as it will serve as a roadmap for the entire renovation project. Clear communication and collaboration between you and your contractor will help ensure that the project progresses smoothly and is completed to your satisfaction.

Focus on Quality Materials & Systems

When planning your materials selections and upgraded systems, focus on long-term quality over initial up-front savings. For example, installing top-tier roofing, windows, HVAC, and insulation can yield significant energy efficiency gains over the life of the home.

Choose durable, water-resistant materials like solid wood cabinets, stone countertops, and tile floors that can withstand wear and moisture in bathrooms and kitchens. 

Explore Green Upgrades & Incentives

There are many opportunities to improve your home’s resource efficiency through Maryland’s energy savings programs and tax credits. Incorporating sustainable building practices and eco-friendly materials into your renovation can not only reduce your carbon footprint but also save you money in the long run. Explore options such as solar panels, energy-efficient appliances, and water-saving fixtures to make your home more environmentally friendly. Additionally, consider implementing strategies for waste reduction and recycling during the construction process to minimize environmental impact. By prioritizing sustainability in your renovation, you can create a healthier and more eco-conscious living space for you and your family.

Get Your Renovation Started Today

Ready to embark on a major renovation journey in Maryland but unsure where to start? Look no further. Cornerstone Remodeling is here to guide you through every step of the planning process. Our experienced team will help you navigate the complexities of major renovations, ensuring your project stays on track and within budget. From initial brainstorming sessions to finalizing design details, we’ll be with you every step of the way. Don’t let uncertainty hold you back—reach out to Cornerstone Remodeling today and let’s turn your renovation dreams into reality. Schedule your consultation now and take the first step towards transforming your Maryland home into the space of your dreams. Click here to get started with a quote!

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