Our first goal with each new project is building a solid, trusting partnership with the clients. We pride ourselves for the enduring relationships we have built over the years, with both clients and contractors.
The process of designing and building a new home can be a challenging experience in the wrong hands: we strive to make it as enjoyable and collaborative as possible. Listening and being aware of individual clients' needs is critical to the success of this process. Often, the goals and needs can be different for each of the clients in a particular project. We once designed a renovation project for a couple who could not sit in the same room at the same time to discuss the project because of their particular concerns. Thankfully, the project was near a beach. Peter would walk in one direction down the beach with the husband, discussing project costs and schedules. He would then walk in the other direction with the wife to discuss design issues. In the end, they were both completely happy - so much so, that they came back for two more projects.
This creative collaboration is the heart of our architectural services - turning dreams and ideas into reality - while at the same time working with tight budgets and schedules. We place a high priority on balancing good design with fiscal responsibility.
Here's how the process works:
- Design process - at our initial meetings, we discuss your goals, ideas and preferences - from the esoteric to the specific. Along with information from a detailed questionnaire that we provide, you'll be encouraged to bring along images of other houses that you have found appeal to you - often in the form of journal clippings and personal sketches.
- Proposal - a written proposal is then developed, which includes, whenever possible, a fixed-fee proposal and a description of the project.
- Design - the design phase, which follows next, is a highly collaborative process, involving clients and architect in the final design.
- Documents - next, the construction documents (which are often called working drawings) are prepared, and includes information in both drawing and written form.
- Contractor - usually, during the earlier stages of the process, the selection of a contractor is discussed and contract options reviewed. Once the construction documents are ready and pricing completed, we help in the negotiating and preparing the contract. Often, the selected contractor becomes an integral part of the project team early in the process.
- Construction - the next phase involves construction of the project. During it, we assist in assuring that it is built according to the construction documents.
- Ultimate goal - a completed project that fulfills the goals off the client, a finished product in which all involved take pride and claim pride of ownership, and a process that ends with everyone involved in the process on friendly terms.