FAQ’s

Here you’ll find a compilation of the most frequently asked questions. If there’s something you want to know which isn’t here, please contact us.

General

What is Model Living?

Model Living is an end-to-end bathroom and kitchen renovation service. Traditional renovations involve multiple stakeholders (contractors, material vendors, fabricators and designers) and are incredibly stressful and time consuming. Model Living simplifies everything into a streamlined process – we prepare a detailed scope, generate a fair and transparent price, work with you to design your space, and pair you with the appropriate contractor(s) to complete the build. To make your renovation even easier, we’ve developed a platform that provides you with a single place to manage your entire project. Review your designs, communicate with your team, get build updates, make payments, and more.

Does Model Living only do bathroom and kitchen renovations?

We specialize in bathroom and kitchen renovations and have developed a highly efficient end-to-end experience for our customers. By focusing on bathroom and kitchen renovations we are able to offer clients a faster, more affordable, and stress-free renovation experience.


Having said this, if there are small tasks you’d like completed in addition to your bathroom and/or kitchen project, we can likely take this on. Examples include: flooring in additional rooms, popcorn ceiling removal, and painting. Speak with a project advisor to discuss these requests.

Where does Model Living operate?

Model Living operates in the Greater Toronto Area as well as South-East Florida.

In the GTA, we service the following municipalities and its surrounding areas:

  • Toronto
  • Markham
  • Vaughan
  • Richmond Hill
  • Mississauga
  • Brampton
  • Oakville
  • Burlington
  • Hamilton
  • Milton
  • Guelph
  • Cambridge
  • Kitchener
  • Orangeville
  • Barrie
  • Pickering
  • Ajax
  • Whitby
  • Oshawa
  • Kawartha Lakes
  • Peterborough
  • Cobourg
  • Muskoka

In South Florida, we service the following cities and surrounding areas:

  • Miami
  • Hollywood
  • Fort Lauderdale
  • Pompano Beach
  • Boca Raton
  • West Palm Beach
  • Jupiter

However, we are continually expanding so please feel free to reach out to us and we will let you know when we expect to be in your area.


How long does a renovation take in total?

On average, bathrooms are built within 2 to 3 weeks, compared to the industry average of 3 months. Model Living kitchens are built in 4 to 6 weeks, compared to the industry average of 5 months. Depending on the scope of work of your project, this timeline can be extended or accelerated.

What is a home visit and why do I need one?

The initial home visit allows your estimator to determine the feasibility of your proposed scope by examining the elements in your home. The estimator will also take measurements and photos to be able to provide a more refined quote for you. The main intention of the visit is to ensure that an achievable vision is determined, which will set you up for a smooth design process, a successful build, and a high quality finished product.

Will Model Living help me navigate the building approval process?

Yes. We will provide your building with all of the information they require. This may include: contractor licensing, insurance certificates, WSIB clearance forms and work schedules.

What is the condo board approval process like?

Condo boards wield all of the power; you are legally bound to gain their approval before beginning any kind of renovation, barring less invasive cosmetic repairs. First and foremost, you need to obtain a copy of your alteration agreement to learn the limits and restrictions around home improvement projects. Next, you must gather the relevant documents your boards requests. These range from detailed work schedules and plans to insurance certificates and city permits.


Once you have submitted the necessary documents, the building’s management and/or architect will go over the material and clarify any potential issues. Their job is not to oversee any aesthetic decisions, rather to protect the building from liability and make sure the project complies with city codes. Unfortunately, the approval process can include a lot of hurdles and back-and-forth – Model Living is there to support you through your board process to the best of our ability by providing you with many of the necessary documents and drawings.  It is always wise to be extra vigilant during this step to avoid major delays.

COVID-19 Safety

Here at Model Living, we treat the health of our clients, contractors and employees with the utmost importance.


We encourage all of our customers and contractors to protect themselves and others from COVID-19 by following health guidelines, which includes isolating or quarantining as necessary, wearing a mask, washing hands frequently, maintaining social distancing, and getting vaccinated. We also recommend reviewing province, local, and condo board guidance specific to your area.

Design Process

Can I share my own inspiration images with my designer?

We recommend sharing any inspirational images that have caught your eye in advance of your design call. These can help your designer understand your design preferences and work with you in creating a space that works both functionally and aesthetically.

How do I prepare for my material selection call with my designer?

Browse through our project gallery, design templates and product catalogs to identify products you’re interested in. The goal of this meeting is to identify all the products from our catalogs that will be used during your renovation. 


If you are unable to make all of our selections from within our catalogs, you can source products yourself from any of our partner vendors and still receive discounted pricing and our procurement services.


If you choose to procure products from vendors outside of our network, we simply require that you update your advisor on the products you will be purchasing so they can ensure compatibility. Model Living is not able to offer trade pricing or procurement services for items outside of our vendor network. 

How did you create your design collections

We worked with some of North America’s top architects and designers to create our bathroom and kitchen packages. Each collection offers a unique aesthetic and features thoughtfully selected fixtures and finishes from leading brands. 


Working with one of our architects on a standard bathroom design would cost between $5,000 to $10,000, and a standard kitchen design would cost between $10,000 to $20,000. We offer these designs to our customers at no additional charge.

Can I customize my design?

Yes. Our design catalogs serve as the foundation of our renovations and are meant to be customized by you. There are multiple options for each fixture and finish, allowing for thousands of possible combinations. All fixtures and finishes included in our design catalogs work together both aesthetically and functionally to ensure a desirable finished product.


Once you have received your itemized design sheet from your designer, you will have the ability to review and make up to 2 rounds of edits, which is sufficient for most customers. Once fixtures and finishes have been selected in your design sheet, you will have the option to purchase a photo-realistic rendering to help you visualize your new space and ensure everything is perfect. After this you will also have a chance to make a change to your material selections if necessary.

How many designs do I get to see?

Your designer will work with you to create a design that works best for you and your space. A list of materials will be provided for your project where you will have the opportunity to make adjustments with your designer during the design phase. You’ll have up to 2 revisions per room to iron out your design. A revision includes the opportunity to adjust the entire overall look of the space. Additional revisions beyond the initial 2 will cost $200 per revision, which includes an updated scope summary. The fee will be reflected in a separate line item for Model Living Services.

How many iterations can I make to my cabinet design?

We will update your cabinet drawings twice at no additional charge. Each subsequent update will come at a price of $250. You may request as many changes as you’d like in each update, so we recommend batching requests. Most customers are able to complete their dream design within the two complimentary updates.

Can I get a 3D rendering of my proposed space?

Yes. We will produce two photo realistic renderings of your new space at a fee of $500 per bathroom or kitchen. These rates are 5x less expensive than what a traditional designer and architect would charge for comparable quality renderings. 


Products that are outside of our catalogue cannot be included in the renderings. The renderings will show you aesthetically what your new space will look like, but positioning of items is not exact. Revisions are available at an additional cost of $100/each. 


Please note that during the kitchen cabinetry design process we will produce 2D layout drawings and lower quality renderings at no additional cost.

When is the last point at which I can make design changes? Can I make design changes once construction begins?

Design is typically finalized prior to moving into the next phase which is the ordering of all the materials in preparation for your build. If any unforeseen issue arises prior to or during construction, our team will work with you to adapt your design appropriately to ensure a smooth build. If any materials are added or removed leading up to construction, this would result in a design change. Design changes requested after approval of the design documents, will result in a change order. A change order is work or materials that are added to or removed from the initial scope of work which alters the cost and potentially the completion date of your project. We will provide a single price for the change that includes materials, labor, and a 15% Model Living service fee.

Does Model Living provide architectural and engineering drawings or permitting services?

No, Model Living does not have in-house engineers or architects to provide drawings and city permitting services.

Product

Can I purchase products outside of the Model Living product catalogs?

Yes. Although most customers choose to purchase all items from our catalogs, you may choose to procure your own materials if you’d like. If you are procuring some materials yourself, your project advisor will let you know what information we need to verify the items are well suited for your particular project.


Be aware that if you are procuring materials yourself, we will schedule a start date upon receiving confirmation that all of the materials are onsite and ready for your contractor.

Can I see products in person?

Yes. We work with local tile distributors that have large showrooms where you can see the items on display. 

Greater Toronto Area:

In the GTA, all 3 vendors are located within minutes from each other for convenience. 

Ciot - 1020 Lawrence Ave W, North York, ON M6A 1C8

Olympia Tile - 1000 Lawrence Ave W, North York, ON M6A 1C6

Centura - 950 Lawrence Ave W, North York, ON M6A 1C4

Cabinetry and wood flooring samples are available for pickup at our office at 141 Bathurst St. Toronto, ON. You can coordinate pickup with your designer. 

South Florida:

Each of our tile vendors have multiple showrooms which are searchable via the links below. 

USA Tile And Marble - https://www.usatileandmarble.net/

D&B Tile Distributors - https://dbtile.com/pages/store-locator

Daltile - https://www.daltile.com/store-locator


What is Model Living’s return policy?

Model Living allows items to be returned for a full refund if they are in their original packaging. Returns will be picked up on a scheduled date once the project is complete.


Items that are defective or damaged will be exchanged immediately to ensure minimal disruption to construction timelines.


The following materials fall outside of our return policy and are thus not eligible for a refund.

  • Kitchen Cabinetry & Hardware
  • Countertops (Laminate & Quartz)
  • Loose Tiles (We will only accept unopened complete boxes of tiles)
What warranty does Model Living offer?

Model Living offers a 1-year warranty that covers issues related to poor workmanship. 


In regards to fixtures and finishes, each brand has their own warranty policies which can be found on the individuals brands website. We’ve done our best to select items that have very favorable policies for homeowners. 


Please note that for material warranties and claims, complimentary installation services will not be provided. 

What is my kitchen cabinetry warranty?

Model Living warrants its cabinets for a period of 2 years against all material defects and workmanship from the date of installation.

Pricing & Payments

What’s included in my estimate and how is it calculated?

Your estimate provides an approximate starting price for the full scope of your project, including materials, construction, and Model Living services. 


Materials consists of all fixtures and finishes required for your project. By buying in bulk from our vendors we’re able to pass along exclusive discounts to you, saving you up to 30% compared to other retailers. Services includes design services, building approvals, procurement, shipping, and digital support throughout your project. Finally, construction consists of home protection, demolition, and labor by a vetted contractor from our partner network.


We’ve built a proprietary pricing algorithm to calculate our construction price. This algorithm takes into account your project's scope of work as well as additional factors like location and contractor availability. Our contractor network spans over 100+ contractors and because of this scale, we are able to offer customers with the highest ratio of quality-to-price.


After your home visit, a Model Living team member will collect all the information that is needed to finalize the scope of work and quote for your project. 

Can I receive a breakdown of my labour quote?

We provide homeowners with a single price per room and will not break down that price into multiple components. The reason being that our process is most efficient when we complete full gut renovations and therefore, we do not allow homeowners to remove aspects of the quote. Also, small, subtle changes to the scope of work have no impact on construction efficiency and timeline and do not warrant an adjustment to the labour price. An example of a subtle scope adjustment that would have no impact on price would be adding / removing an additional pot light or adding / removing a standard sized shower niche.

What are Model Living’s payment terms?

We offer standard payment terms on all of our projects. 


Payment 1 - Deposit: Service Fee

Payment 2 - Finalize Materials: 100% of materials + 40% of labour quote

Payment 3 - Project Start Date: 40% of labour quote

Payment 4 - Project Completion Date: 20% of labour quote

Does Model Living offer financing?

We do not offer financing in Canada at this time. We advise speaking with your bank to inquire about receiving a home equity line of credit or other favorable financing opportunities.

If you are located in the US, we offer financing starting at 4.99% APR on flexible terms ranging from 2 to 12 years.


Shipping

COVID-19 Lead Times

Some brands are experiencing supply chain disruptions as a result of COVID-19. If any of your selected finishes are having stock issues when we commence procurement we will work with your designer to come up with an appropriate alternative for you to review and approve in order to maintain your timeline.

When will my items be delivered?

To avoid storing items in your home prior to the build, we will deliver all materials on a scheduled date during your build.

Construction

When will I receive an exact start date?

You will receive an exact start date shortly after you’ve selected all of our project fixtures & finishes. Most projects start within 4 weeks of when material selections are finalized. Speak with a project advisor if you’d like your project to break ground sooner or later than our typical timelines and we will try to accommodate.

Can construction start sooner than the estimated date?

Yes it is possible. Construction start date depends on time spent in the design stage, as well as time required to procure materials for the build. Due to current global supply chain disruptions, the procurement process may take slightly longer than normal times. Your project manager will communicate with you on any timeline updates.

Can I live in my home during construction?

Yes, for most projects. If you are renovating all of the bathrooms in your home at the same time then we recommend relocating for the duration of the project. During kitchen renovations, you will need to cook in other areas of your home. We recommend using a microwave or purchasing a portable electric cooktop for your cooking needs.

How should I prepare for my break ground?
  1. Notify Neighbors: It never hurts to give your neighbors a heads up of your project. Typically the first few days of a build are the loudest due to the demolition process. There is sporadic noise after that but nothing too crazy.


  1. Preparing a Staging Area: Before the build starts you’ll want to set up what we call a staging area for your contractor, which is a space that the contractor will require for their tools as well as all materials.


The size of this area should be roughly 10’ x 10’ if possible (more space is appropriate if your renovation involves multiple rooms)


If your house has a garage, this is a great place for a staging area. If it is a condo or a smaller townhome unit, we ask that you do your best to find the space (even if it is a couple small spaces!). This area will be necessary, keeping the build smooth and on track.


  1. Preparing the Space: Before your build date you will want to make sure that all of your items are out of the rooms that you are renovating.


Do your best to move furniture, items in adjacent areas in such a way that there are clear pathways through the home for your contractor to move materials, tools, and waste.


Your contractor will do their best to mitigate dust beyond the work space (they will speak with you about their plan at the start of the build). However, inherently some dust may migrate to adjacent spaces. Please be cognizant of this and relocate items or make adjustments should you have any concern.


  1. Home Access: Your contractor will need access to your home to keep the project moving smoothly (unless you plan on being there every single day during the build).


Think about how you would like to approach this… Share keys, a lock box, other? Whatever your solution may be, make sure you communicate with your contractor and have the appropriate keys or items required before the start date.


  1. Parking: Contractors will need to continuously move tools and materials from their vehicle into the workspace. It is key for them to have parking as close to the unit as possible. 


If there is a driveway for your home, consider making sure a space is available for your contractor each day.


If you live in a condo, please consider making arrangements for visitor parking or other similar solutions if possible.


  1. Condo Specific Considerations: Please triple check at this point that your build date is still OK with your condo (sometimes things change and it is critical that your contractor finds out ASAP).


It is up to you to make sure that the elevators are booked on the following schedule:


Day 1: Morning and afternoon (usually the Monday)

Day 2: Morning

First Friday: Afternoon


Let your contractor know if there are any odd restrictions that you think would be valuable for them to know in advance (e.g. 1 day demo rule, highly constraining noise hours, etc.). Less impactful details such as exact working hours can be communicated with your contractor at the start of your build.

Do I need to be present during construction?

We encourage clients to be present during the build. The simple reason being it is best to note any workmanship deficiencies as they arise so they can be easily corrected. If you’re not able to be present, we recommend having a friend or family member check in on your behalf. If neither of these are possible, please discuss the situation with a project advisor to determine the best path forward.

What happens if I’m not satisfied with the work completed?

To ensure any issues with workmanship can be corrected, we encourage you to communicate these concerns with your contractor as they emerge. Our contractors are friendly small business owners that put your satisfaction as their top priority, so you should feel comfortable expressing any issues you have with them on an ongoing basis. Once the work is completed, the number of issues that can be resolved is drastically reduced. If you’re having constant issues with your contractor throughout the build, please reach out to a project advisor so they can help solve the problem.

Contractors

Is Model Living a general contractor?

Model Living is a platform that simplifies the renovation process by combining design, material sourcing, and construction together in a single, streamlined experience. As part of our process, we pair you with a vetted, local contractor from our network who is the best fit for your project based on its unique variables.

Who are Model Living’s partner contractors?

Model Living works with a network of contractors that are licensed, insured, and meet our quality standards for doing a renovation. These contractors have demonstrated the ability to build bathrooms and kitchens with high quality and efficiency. They also work within Model Living’s construction standards – which give you peace of mind that the proper techniques and precautions are taken for fundamentals like waterproofing, plumbing, and electrical.

Can I work with Model Living if I already have a contractor?

Yes. You can work with us to scope your project, select your materials and develop instructions for your contractor to follow during the build (aka construction drawings). By working with Model Living to plan your project, customers save hundreds of hours and drastically increase the likelihood of a smooth and stress-free build. 

How do I become a Model Living contractor?

Model Living makes contractors more efficient and allows them to complete more projects each year. If you’re interested in applying to join our network, please email us at hello@modelliving.com or call us at 1-888-890-2815.

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