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Master Plan in a Month

14 min read Master plan in a month to get (most of) the benefits of a master plan in just 30 days.

Many people go from deciding to remodel to wanting to make their plans into a reality as quickly as possible. And that can happen for a lot of very normal reasons.

Perhaps you have just pulled the trigger on your own decision tree. Perhaps you’ve just found your dream house and you want to update it quickly before moving in. Maybe some necessary maintenance is moving your remodel along more quickly than planned.

For all the folks out there who are in a rush to get to construction, I’m going to give you some very from the heart advice, it might seem like the easiest and best thing to do is just pick up the phone and start calling contractors. But a stitch in time saves nine. And just a small amount of planning done the right way is going to save you so much trouble expense and time in the long run. 

Yes you CAN plan quickly … with a system

I hear from so many people who believe that a they don’t have enough time to devote to a deep dive into the Master Plan Method.  Or don’t have the resources to work with Mid Mod Midwest.  

Is this you? If it is, here’s some really good news. Remodel planning is not an either/or proposition. Some planning is better than no planning. And whatever planning you can do is going to vastly improve your remodeling experience. So … Here’s the system!

The Master Plan Method: it works!

Here are the essentials of remodel planning:   

  • You need a solid understanding of your priorities and your intentions.
  • You need to get familiar with what’s going on in your house right now.
  • You need to distill what a beautiful mid-century home means to you.
  • You need to consider several possibilities and dismiss the ones don’t work. 

Here’s the really important part …

You can get a lot of the benefits of a master plan even if you only take time to touch each step in the process briefly – a few hours, a few days, a few weeks all work and will all make your remodel that much better.

In Today’s Episode You’ll Hear:

  • Why some things are worth half-assing. 
  • The one thing that is sure to slow you down…and fast!
  • Why you don’t have to pick no planning or all the planning. 

Listen Now On 

Apple | Google |  Spotify

Resources for Quick Planning

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And you can always…

Read the Full Episode Transcript

Most people jump into their remodel without any sort of vision or a master plan. Unfortunately, this almost always results in a nonzero amount of remodelers’ regret when the work is done, and usually a slower overall process. But I hear from so many people who believe that they don’t have enough time to devote to a deep dive into the master plan method, or that they don’t have the resources to work with Midwest directly, or to engage with ready to remodel or some of our other homeowner support programs.

Is this you? If it is, I have some really great news. It’s not an either or proposition. You don’t have to pick between no planning and all the planning. You can get most of the benefits of the master plan method, even if you only take the time to touch each step in the process very briefly. Hey there, welcome back to mid mod remodel. This is the show about updating MCM homes helping you match mid-century home to your modern life. I’m your host Della Hansmann, architect and mid-century ranch enthusiast, and you’re listening to Episode 1409.

Now before I get into the subject of today, I wanted to do a couple of quick friend of the podcast shout outs, it is November now. And that means it’s the perfect time to stick your Halloween decor in a drawer and start to plan ahead for Christmas. By grabbing a modern Christmas tree before they run out for the year. There’s always a limited stock. I just posted a lovely chat with Matt bliss, the owner and CO designer of the modern Christmas tree company on my Instagram. Check that out and learn the fun story of how his engineer grandfather created this charming, super modern holiday item and how it has worked its way into the architectural icons like the Stahl House, the Farnsworth House and the Sheats–Goldstein Residence. And you can have it in your house too.

It’s also the perfect time to start planning ahead to give gifts, perhaps your partner maybe to your house directly a set of Modern House members, I always love to promote all of my fellow mid mod businesses during this month of constant holiday sales. And instead of giving all your Christmas gift money to Jeffrey Bezos, why not support a small business, you can find a laundry list of great mid-century businesses to check out and our holiday gift guide at midmod-midwest.com/ 1007.

And I’ll let you know right now that you can use the discount code midmodholiday. All one word to get 10% off modern house numbers all month long.

Okay, let’s get into today’s theme. Many people go from deciding to remodel to wanting to make their plans into a reality as quickly as possible. And that can happen for a lot of very normal reasons. Perhaps you have just pulled the trigger on your own decision tree. Perhaps you’ve just found your dream house and you want to update it quickly before moving in.

For all the folks out there who are in a rush to get to construction, I’m going to give you some very from the heart advice, it might seem like the easiest and best thing to do is just pick up the phone and start calling contractors. But a stitch in time saves nine. And just a small amount of planning done the right way is going to save you so much trouble expense and time in the long run. 

If you’re in the minority of people I talked to and you’re not actually concerned with how long it will take before you get started on your remodeling plans, then the advice I have for you today is still going to help you plan a remodel that suits you better, stresses you less and ends up more perfectly tailored to the exact home you’ve been dreaming of. So you’ve got nothing to lose by listening to the same advice I’d give someone who was trying to plan a great remodel in a hurry.

There’s no surprise or trick to my message. The title of my song is use the Master Plan method to fast track your remodel plans. I sing this song all the time. So let’s do it one more time from the top. I hear from so many people who believe they don’t have any time to devote to a deep dive to the Master Plan method. Or they don’t have the resources to pay Midwest to do the design thinking for them. And again, the good news is it’s not an all or nothing proposition.

You don’t have to pick between no planning and all the planning. For people who feel like they’re really in a time crunch, I’ve been hearing you say this, and you’ve been on my mind. You’re in a rush, you’re feeling cash strapped and time strapped. And those two things often go hand in hand. I’ve been cooking up something especially for you. So please check out our latest offering master plan in a month, the mini course.

In fact, if you have less than a month, I guarantee you can go through this material even more quickly than that. Take it at your own pace. I have pulled together the most essential minimalist items have the masterplan method. This is just exactly what you need to touch to spend maybe one evening per step or listen to a module at the dog park, mull it over and then move on to the next phase.

If you do even that you’ll be planning a little more firmly more grounded in what you have prioritized and what you’ll care about and you’ll anchor all of your decisions as you go forward more firmly. Just as with ready to remodel, we have set this program up for maximum flexibility. 

So, you can watch the master plan in a month video lessons or listen to them in audio format. It’s available to access on your phone and a handy app. And all the accompanying workbooks are super handy. Fill in the blank Google Docs that allow you to answer the essential questions about your house, yourself and your style to anchor your confidence and remodeling choices and keep yourself motivated and on track as you do a speed run reno.

I have worked with many homeowners in a tight timeline before. Folks who might have believed at first that they didn’t have any time to pre plan but decided to take just a moment. Now I can’t compare those results to the same alternate reality version of them who didn’t take time to plan. But I know that all of them have walked away from their process feeling more confident. And more ready to be efficient as they rush through the rest of their remodel. So let’s let you avoid remodelers regret too.

I am also sadly, deeply familiar with the other side of the coin with people who believe they didn’t have time to plan before starting on demo or choosing their contractor and jumped right in. The results of that are not as pretty. And that leads to the kind of story of Oh, yes, we wish we’d known when we started. You can fill in the blank from the stories you’ve heard from your own friends.

So I encourage you to go check this out right now. You can find out more about the masterplan in a month mini course at midmod-midwest.com/month. And as always, you’ll find show notes with a link to the whole pep talk I’m giving you today, an outline of this conversation, the transcript, in fact on my website at midmod-midwest.com/1409. So before you call a contractor, set the phone back down, or if you’re one of my many clients who come to us already connected with a contractor you like, that’s great too.

But ask them to hit pause just for a moment to let you take time to think through quickly the steps of the masterplan method. I know you’re in a hurry, you’ve been waiting on this remodel, or you need to get it done before move in day or the start of the academic year or at the waiting list for this contractor won’t last long. But you will be living in your house for a lot longer than you’re thinking about waiting right now. And I don’t want you to be living with a house that was remodeled in the wrong way for you.

Even a short amount of masterplan thinking can save you time, money, stress and end up putting you into a house you’ll love more for years to come. This is worth it. If you’re a longtime listener to the podcast, you know, I recommend taking as long as you can to think about all the pros and cons of various things you might try in your home before you start. But if you don’t have time to do a lot of thinking, do a little. I believe this so firmly. And that’s why I put together the master plan and a month mini course.

Here’s the thing I need you to know though. Nothing will help you make your decisions more quickly than setting your priorities and your intentions from the start. That’s always been baked into the masterplan method, you need to take time to get familiar with what’s going on in your house right now, in order to make the kind of properly anchored decisions that stretch your remodeling dollars. And to avoid getting surprised down the line by unexpected to you but predictable problems that both cost more money and slow down the remodel process.

You want to end up liking the project you take on and not be in the position of people who get in touch with me in my DMs quietly at least every week to say they already remodeled their house, they did the remodel too fast too soon.

They wish they’d known then what they know now. I don’t want that to be you. So you need to take a little bit of time to distill what a beautiful mid-century home means to you. And what are the benefits of the house you have right now, so you don’t end up losing them at the remodel.

If you don’t take time to explore a few of your options, you’ll never feel competent that you chose the right thing. In the end. This process of selecting between a couple of options doesn’t have to take a long time. You don’t have to mull over your possibilities for a decade. In fact, you can draft several possibilities and dismiss the ones don’t work in a week or a day. But you do need to think about other alternatives before you decide on the layout changes, you’ll be making or the finished decisions you’ll be making that set the tone for your house.

Once you have those first four steps checked off, asking yourself what matters most finding out what you need to know about your house, what mid-century style means to you, and weighing a few pros and cons before you make your final choices. You will have created something you can pull together into a fast track remodel plan. That is essentially a mini master plan.

Now a master plan doesn’t have to be a static document, it can develop and change and adapt over time. It can respond and you can use it to respond to new information you get from contractors about pricing their suggestions for how to do something better, faster, cheaper, as you discover things about the house you couldn’t have known when you open up that wall as your life shifted priorities as things change around you.

But having that framework and having taken the time however quickly to walk through those steps, not only gives you a plan you can work from but also a process you can return to again and again in situations large or small to calm yourself and to make practical tailor to decisions that perfectly suit your house, your life and your style as they come up through a fast tracked remodel process.

Let’s look at this another way. Nothing will slow you down faster than indecision, and nothing will make a fast remodel seem like a bad remodel more quickly than an ill-considered choice. So a small amount of time devoted to masterplan thinking allows you to speed through the process of planning a perfect remodel for your mid-century house. No matter how contracted your timeline is.

I would follow this process whether I was taking a meditative approach to tuning a house around me over the course of several decades. Or if I needed to make choices for myself between now and making the offer and closing on the house. I’ve worked with clients in both of those situations, and I use the exact same steps at a different pace for each of them. So I’d love to walk you through how we’ve boiled this down in the master plan in a month course. And what we’ve done to micro size, the Master Plan method.

When you follow the arc of the master plan method, within the master plan and a month mini course, you hit each of the five days in order, you dream up the project that’s right for you. By asking yourself what truly matters to you and your family, you discover the most important things to you to know about the house before you begin, you distill a clean and clear vision for your style to keep your remodel timeless and true to your own preferences. You draft quick and dirty options. So you can roll ideas in and out and turn the project to fit your budget and your level of commitment and energy.

And then you develop all of that information into an easy packet of sketches, Pinterest images, notes that you can use to guide yourself or to share with contractors, suppliers and anyone else helping you to make your plans into a reality. I have boiled down 10 simple video lessons that you can watch or listen to in about two hours time. Each one comes with a workbook or a design guide that you can use to ask yourself simple but powerful questions to streamline your thinking about what you want. And to help get you on the same page. As other members or your family or decision making partners.

You can follow this either way you can binge the lessons all at the start and then think through the suggestions over the course of the month. Or you can watch one lesson and then follow through on its content. Remember, you don’t have to sit at a desk to have good ideas. You don’t have to sit on your sofa with your laptop in your lap either. Some of my best design insights for my clients’ projects have struck me while I walk the dog or in the middle of the night.

The secret though, is to have set the scene for yourself to be prepared to ask the right questions so that the right answers can come to you. I’ve also thrown in some bonus content with the master planning a month mini course some of my favorite resources to help keep you going. There’s a quick pep talk as a bonus for each phase of the project, a little mid mod enthusiasm to keep you driving forward towards your tight deadline.

You might also want to kick off the process with the mini workshop how to find time to plan for a remodel. If you’re busy and you’re on a deadline. I know. I’ll walk you through how you might be able to tie your new planning project to something you already enjoy or regularly do in your life to supercharge your chance of actually succeeding at this deadline.

And I’m tossing in my very favorite mid-century design clinic the simple style guide system. This is a bonus to our workshop that help tells you exactly how to set the style for your remodel and take yourself from miserably doomed scrolling on Pinterest to a person with a clean vision for their home the finish palette for every room in your house. It’s a gift, it’s worth a whole mini course put together.

But here’s what I want you to remember, regardless of the timeline for your remodel plans, whether you’re trying to master plan in a month, or you would just want to spend less time planning over the next year so that you can kick your plans off next year. Anything worth doing is worth half-assing. I saw this on a random Instagram reel. And my first thought was that this was some throwback to the 90s those demotivational posters. I had a calendar of them on the wall in my room in high school. There was one of two runners on a hillside in the sunset, a man running behind a woman and the caption was, its over man let her go.

But when I thought about this a little more, anything worth doing is worth half-assing I realized the author was serious. Or if they weren’t, I am and I completely agree with it. We don’t live in an all or nothing world. And look, I certainly don’t advise my clients that if we don’t have time to plan every detail, they should just toss up their hands and take the HGTV special the local kitchen store is offering and call it a day. More time to plan is better, but some is better than not.

This is also the theory behind my love for level one home improvement projects. Remember, rather than just sitting in a space you don’t like whether you’re going to be there forever or you’re just waiting until you’ve saved up the money and the energy to do a bigger project. Give yourself a little satisfaction right now find a mid-century coffee table will paint your front door your favorite color, throw down a nice rug and transform the way you feel about your living room. Add a new mailbox house numbers give your front door area a quick facelift that’s only about buying a few things and installing them. Some is better than none.

And that same thing is true for planning thinking. So when you only have a little time to spare before a remodeling deadline, like a move in date, or contract or availability, or the next building season beginning, you want to spend that little bit of time the perfect way. So the less time you have, actually the more you want to make sure you’re hitting every step of the master plan process and taking it in order.

I created the Master Plan method originally not just to make for better remodels, but also to make for faster decision making. There are so many moving parts to updating a mid-century home that planning any remodel, it’s really important to take the steps in order with seriousness but not to obsess and to allow yourself to keep moving down the line so you don’t hyper focus on later decisions before the earlier ones are locked in.

One more time, here’s the bottom line friend. setting yourself up for a great remodel is not all or nothing. I really do believe that giving yourself as much time as possible to plan is the easiest way to end up with a perfectly tailored and timeless home. But as much time as possible is relative. So do allow yourself to believe that planning is possible. And if you’re in a time crunch, don’t go it alone. Grab the resource I made just for you. And let me walk you through the most unmissable elements of the mid syndrome Master Plan process so that you can pull off a master plan in a month or less if you need to.

Get this episode pep talk in blog form at midmod-midwest.com/1409 or hop straight over and sign yourself up for the masterplan in a month mini course you can begin immediately directly at midmod-midwest.com/month. However much or little time you have to devote to your remodel, I would love for you to know that you gave it your best shot. Next week on the podcast I’ll be sharing a key mental reframe that has the potential to transform the way you feel about your remodel before, during and after construction. But for now, I wish you the speediest of possible remodel planning processes. Ciao.