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A custom home does not have to mean contracting an expensive architect

There are several very reasonable designers and architects that cater for a market that wants a home for their unique needs, tastes and unique locations, but whose  budgets are not quite so large.

There is also the fear that an architects or designers plan may be completed and paid for, but later found that the plans are too expensive to build so all that money is wasted.  This unfortunately does happen.  However, this often happens where there is little accountability and no builder involvement in the design stages.

Even changes that may seem quite subtle to the Homeowner may involve significant additional costs, often as a result of structural requirements or lack of awareness of additional labour and material needs.  Designers are not builders, and they are not building suppliers so they may not be aware either, or there is a misunderstanding of how far a budget can be stretched.

What can be done?

The best outcome is achieved through the builder, designer and yourselves (the Homeowner) all working together from the start and the design/build team not only listening, but understanding your needs, priorities and budget right from the start.

One way we achieve this is to manage the design process ourselves. We can then include other critical steps such as advising on potential costs or construction complexities, estimating the concept plans to give you confidence to proceed to the next stage, and then undertaking detailed client selections on house inclusions to provide an accurate final price.

The key here is that there is an extra layer of understanding, clarification is available throughout, practical building expertise is on tap, plus an important relationship is nurtured.

Understanding the Design Contract

Our ‘Pre-liminary Contract for Design Services’ sets out two stages to designing and pricing a home. This contract is an agreement with the homeowner to firstly, provide concept designs and a preliminary estimate, and secondly, to produce full working drawings and a full ‘fixed price’ investment proposal. The Homeowner must approve the concept plans prior to progressing to the next stage.

The costs for these services vary dependent upon the size and scale of the project, the designer used and any work/plans that have already been produced, i.e. our plan range, layout sketches/ideas, existing building parameters.

Additional costs may arise if plans need a lot of modification. This can generally be avoided through a design team, that includes the homeowner and builder, understanding the homeowner’s priorities, lifestyle, requirements etc at the start.

It is all about matching what is wanted and needed with the best possible service within a set budget, in other words tailoring what we can offer to the homeowners needs.

If you are keen to discuss a possible design build project, we will be able to provide a much better idea of the design costs once we know more about you and your priorities, needs and budget.

Please call us to arrange an initial free consultation.  In the meantime, check our ‘Design Build Service’ in ‘Our Services‘.

Alternatively, download our brochure on what we do and the services we offer.