When you’re planning and designing your own custom home, you should bear in mind that there are distinct design phases associated with the process. Each contractor frames these differently, but here at Koncept Design + Build we break these down into four major categories: schematic and design development, construction documents, permitting, and pre-construction. Here’s what to generally expect during the home planning and home design process after you select your designer and contractor.
Phase One: Schematic and Design Development
During this first phase of the home planning and design process, your particular aesthetic tastes and overarching goals are explored. This includes defining the concept you have in mind for what you want the end result to be, the requirements for making this vision a reality, and a set of guidelines to help your designer make decisions you’ll love about all the little details.
First and foremost, this is essentially a design phase. The first sketches appear that show the general overview of what the house or building will look like after completion. This is an evaluative phase when such designs are assessed. The floor plans and elevations will be considered, and a final design will be approved.
This phase is also a research phase. Site documentation as well as zoning and building codes are assessed in order to ensure that the preliminary design meets these criteria. An initial budget for the overall cost of the project will be proposed, discussed, and adjusted if necessary.
This part of the process can either go very well or be a shaky start to a project that will face a lot of obstacles on the way to completion. This largely depends on how much effort you put into it, as well as the quality of the contractors you hire. If you hire contractors who prioritize your vision and goals, you’ll be a lot better off than working with professionals who keep trying to impose their own taste onto you.
The more information you have at your disposal, the better informed you will be. You should not enter into discussions about your project until you know at least enough to ask relevant questions.
With regards to the initial budget proposal, you need to possess foresight. Realistically speaking, your budget should have some room for flexibility. Leaving yourself some wiggle room can come in handy in case any unforeseen complications with foundations, permitting, or other variables are encountered later in the process.
Phase Two: Pre-Construction
Phase two is the pre-construction phase. Communication is key during this phase, as any revisions or design changes will be included in the final design. This can be achieved by regular and continuous communication with the contractors to make sure everything is in order. During pre-construction, a schedule of values is established to estimate costs and scheduling for the project. Koncept Design + Build will facilitate the bidding process from local subcontractors to analyze costs, secure the team, and develop a formal Construction Contract.
An on-site meeting with your design build contractor is recommended during this phase. This is important to finalize specific design features, selections, and finishes for your new home construction. For example, if you have included marble countertops in your design, this will be the phase when you select the exact type of marble countertop you want.
This phase is when the expectations for your project regarding time and cost are set. Now is the time when you can start to really get excited about the work that’s going to be done. Various factors may impact the time-frame after this stage, but the timeline should be easy to follow and a good rule of thumb for your new home build.
Phase Three: Construction Documents and Drawings
While there may have been some rough sketches done during phases one and two, the documentation phase really starts to consider the details. This phase involves the development of a drawing that will meet the criteria for permit submission, so it has to comply with local, state, and federal building regulations. The drawings that are composed are distributed to the necessary engineering sources (structural, civil, etc.).
Additionally, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing design is all incorporated into the mix during this phase of planning. Plans and drawings begin to address smaller details and grow in complexity when compared to phase one, which used only rough sketches to give a general outline.
In order to get the most from this phase, it’s important to think about what you want. This doesn’t mean just being familiar with the aesthetics of your vision, but with the functional layout of your home. It is primarily the job of the professionals to give you what you ask for, so you need to make sure this is what you really want. Comprehensive structural drawings will be completed during this time and construction drawings will be finalized to describe the project in technical detail to a level sufficient for permit approval.
Phase Four: Permitting
Phase four is when the ball really starts rolling on your new home. You have your plans, you have the specifics: now it’s time to secure permission to carry out the project. Preparing applications, letters to neighbors who will be affected by your house plans, and drawings sets are all part of this phase. An excellent design build contractor will help you navigate this process smoothly using their years of experience in the local area.
This phase also involves coordinating with external permit expediters and couriers, and contains your initial submission to your relevant jurisdiction.
After submitting the appropriate paperwork, the Koncept Design + Build team is happy to help clients track the progress of their permits through the approval process. If any revisions are deemed necessary, we will work with you to resolve the issues and get that final seal of approval from the local authorities.
Prepare to reserve expectations and seek patience, because the progress in this phase is largely out of your control. During the earlier home design and planning phases, the organization of the project and its timeliness is dictated by yourself and the Koncept Design + Build team.
The permitting process is more likely to be time-consuming because it introduces government organizations into the equation, which are often slow and inefficient. As a result, your expectations with regards to time should cater for the fact that applications submitted to government organizations often take months to get going. A large measure of patience will get you through this phase!
To fully explore the vision you have for your new home, contact Koncept Design + Build today. With the right design plan and project management we can turn your vision into a reality together.