20 Reasons to Hire an Architect
An Architect will design your home based on your lifestyle, tailor-making the layout to suit your desired spatial requirements. This is highly preferable to settling for someone else's cookie cutter plans that have nothing to do with your desired way of life or how your everyday life functions. A licensed residential architect my find reasons that you may never had thought about. A custom home or remodeling project designed by a licensed Architect can meet your requirements and the way you want to live, work and play in your new livable space.
An Architect will take into account your specific project building site, take advantage of the wonderful views that induced you to buy it, and make sure that you continue to enjoy the sites amenities in the built residence. Also, the sun and winds behave in a particular manner around your site. Your Architect will document those, and other environmental conditions, to improve your energy efficiency, comfort and enjoyment of living in a custom residence on your property. Site orientation on the property – The proper location of the home can reduce the cost of grading and its foundations. It may even reduce the use of energy over the life of the building. It will take advantage of the views and the site topography along with the environmental impact the way the new home relates to the site. Any Utility systems are researched and thought through prior to any site orientation and homes final installation.
An architect has the training and skill to produce a detailed design right from scratch, based on your particular needs and desires, wants and aspirations - a design that's sensitive to the architecture of your existing home or the one you have always dreamed of, and scaled to the proper proportions. However, what truly makes an architect valuable is the ability to develop and refine a thought or vision of the completed project that you can see and understand. And architects are experts at seeing not only the big picture, but also the hundreds of tiny steps between concept and completion.
After the initial consultation, and once you and the architect have defined the scope, features, purpose, budget and functionality of the project, the architect will develop a set of preliminary drawings, sometimes called schematics. These drawings are just the first of many that you should expect to see.
When most of us think of an architects - designed project, we envision the aesthetics of the building: its size, shape and finished surfaces. How it fits into its surroundings and neighborhood. But behind the pretty face are the skeletal bones of the building. It's the architect's job to design the project to satisfy building codes and meet specific structural demands for that particular design. And striking that balance between aesthetic beauty and structural safety is no easy task - it requires a vast knowledge of various building codes, materials and construction techniques and implementing them into a cohesive design that works for your new home or remodeling project. Hiring a pro makes sure your new home design and/or renovations to an existing home plays by the rules.
No one understands the design of your project or can foresee its looks better than the Architect, which is why he or she is the perfect person to coordinate the various construction professionals before the work starts in earnest. For example, an architect will meet with structural and electrical engineers or HVAC mechanics or engineers prior to design and/or construction to discuss its internal functioning, answer questions and ensure everyone knows their job and what parameters they will work by.
The architects' plans make all the difference in translating your wants and dreams to the details a contractor needs. If a problem should arise - which often happens - the plans will act as a record of what should have been done, and the architect will find a solution without compromising the design, your needs or your wallet.
Once the design phase and drawings are completed, you can decide how involved the architect is in the actual day-to-day construction of the project - if at all. You can hire an architect just to design the project and create all the necessary drawings, and that's it. He or she then has no further involvement. However, for an additional fee, many architects will provide what is considered Contract Administration, or "CA" for short. "When you sign a CA contract", "the architect will check in on the construction from time to time to answer questions and ascertain if work is adhering to the intent of the design.", and verifying the work schedule and confirming that all work is done properly and according to the final plans and specifications. He checks on the progress to be sure the work meets the requests for payments that the contractor is submitting prior to a check being issued. Finally, the architect provides an extra set of eyes on the job, keeping the contractor in line for the work he has signed his contract to complete the project in accordance with the documents provided, and managing the client's budget, so that payments don't get ahead of job progress.
Many times these Contract Administration Services alone can pay for your Architect’s fees.
Many architects have been designing buildings that are environmentally sensitive to both the planet and the homeowner for years and the country seems to be finally catching up. Considering sustainability in concept and construction techniques will ensure that your investment lasts a long time, limits its energy consumption and saves you money through better and efficient design.
Many of the options available vary widely depending on the experience of the architectural firm and the circumstances of a project. Even if you're not plunging into a photovoltaic array, or a backyard wind farm, smart choices can make significant and smaller gains. You may consider using recycled and nontoxic materials, solar or passive water heaters, efficient insulation and trustworthy thermostats. Thus, because many of these measures involve whole-house systems, it's critical to plan them in advance.
Client’s dreams and ideas are designed, drawn professionally and sent out for competitive bids. The competitive bid process saves the client thousands even on a smaller project, by allowing for apples to apples bid comparisons between different builders before they are hired. Detailed drawings protect the client from inferior materials and workmanship during the construction. This magnifies the economic psychology of competitive bidding to the advantage of the client. The client’s goal is obtaining construction value. The architect helps ensure the client receives this value at a fair price and truly completes that dream House or Remodel project that he/she has always desired.
We define and clarify your building needs by collecting information (programming of space), determining what rooms and spaces you want, what characteristics will be important to you, and consideration of traffic patterns throughout the new home or remodeled spaces. This makes it your custom Home or Remodel and fitting your wants and/or needs within a reasonable and defined budget.
We take into consideration how all this will come together and present several Schematic design sketches for you to contemplate which will flow properly and meet your requirements, which in turn has taken in consideration your ideas and has been discussed to its fullest throughout the design process and the plans completion. This presents a one-of-a-kind designed home or remodel that meets your specific lifestyle and your families needs.
In the case of Remodeling, specific detailing of the home is thought through to present more accurate and proposed costs for repairs. This is all completed before constructing and tearing out of any walls or framing because it wasn’t what you expected. Designs of the home or its remodeling can be presented in a modeling format, allowing you to see your project and walk through it before it’s constructed. This saves many headaches, aggravation and cash flow for the project which in turn reduces the mortgage bottom line and the opportunities for mistakes in judgment are drastically reduced.
The Architect has a thorough understanding of many Federal, Municipal, Building and Energy Codes in areas you or your realtor or contractor may not be aware of. The design shall meet or exceed the municipal codes and is a safe structure to live and play in for its life cycle. They are trained to review and interpret rules and regulations set down by the Industry standards for the nation and local municipalities. Architects are required to meet Continuing Education Units (CEU’s) each time they renew their Professional License. It is everyone’s obligation to follow the proper Municipal Zoning, Health, Safety and Welfare Codes. This way it will be comforting to know that you have meant the Health, Safety and Welfare requirements in your design to keep your family safe and comfortable in your new dream Home or Renovation.
We are here to maximize your investment. We look for ways to make your project energy efficient and cost effective. We perform Probable Project cost estimating to help keep the project in line with your budget throughout its design as required and to help you understand what changes may effect that budget along the way.
In designing and building custom homes or additions, time is money. The more time you spend figuring out exactly how your house will be used and the more time you spend in “value analysis,” and acquiring a more specific set of drawings, the less money ends up being spent. This is exactly what your Architect will do during the Process.
We can ease the design and construction process through proper communication based on our education and experience in the field of the built environment.
We can suggest reputable Contractors we have had rewarding experiences with on other projects and they feel comfortable working with licensed professionals.
Behind that buildings face are the skeletal bones known as framing. It’s the Architect’s job to design the project to satisfy building and municipal codes and meet specific structural demands for that particular design. Striking that balance between aesthetic beauty and structural safety is no easy task - it requires a vast knowledge of various building materials and construction techniques and implementing them into a cohesive design that works for your new home or remodeling project.
We develop creative and functional solutions and find ways to reduce construction costs throughout the entire project. We are trained problem solvers and can meet past, present and future needs of a design.
We create total environments, both interior and exterior, that are functional and exciting places to live, work and play. Our goal is to make that dream come true.
We can design efficient use of space to help reduce costs and total area you may require. Oversized rooms are not always the answer, but a well proportioned room is. A well-designed home or addition will add value to the home and can reduce initial costs and also increase its long-term value. It is another means to help offset the Architect’s fee.
We are specially-educated to solve problems in creative ways. We can help you avoid costly surprises and provide innovative solutions you might never have considered, solutions that make your home more efficient, functional and appealing, and solutions that maximize your investment, which in turn will enhance the marketing value to sell the property and acquire a much higher equity, when and if the need should arise.
We approach a project with an open mind toward a broad range of methods, materials, and components, as opposed to a Contractor who may lean toward his construction methods and suppliers only which limits the design capabilities for the project and places your custom home or addition like all the others.
We can help with finding Mortgage Lenders, Suppliers and many other entities during or prior to the construction of your custom home or addition or remodel throughout the entire Project.
We are here to look out for your interests, save you time, money and will do our professional best to find ways to make this long process of design and construction go smoothly for you and your family.
We can coordinate with others on the construction team and communicate with builder’s language easily. This cuts back mistakes generated by miscommunication amongst the builder and his crew and or subcontractors with you, the homeowners that are unaware.
It is our pleasure to be available when you have questions and need answers! Thus it will be refreshing to know that you will have someone that can answer those technical building construction questions, or building code questions you might have, generally days, evenings till 9AM and sometimes weekends and Holidays. Just call the office numbers listed.
We can help simplify well over 8,000 to 16,000 decisions that must be made before you turn that first key in the front door of your new custom designed remodel, addition or home.