Design Process

From Conception to Reality

The Design Process

The first step includes collecting all pertinent data about your site, such as the amount of space you want to live in, number of bedrooms and baths, size of kitchen, special spaces like a shop, library, studio, etc. and, most importantly, your budget.

Schematic Design

I will then design three very different floor plans on your site that meet your program (including furniture layouts). This approach will allow us to explore a wide range of possibilities regarding the basic layout of the house and garage: how they work together and with your site, views, outdoor areas, existing trees, neighboring structures, wind directions, solar angles, etc. After studying these three plans with you, I will combine portions of each to create the preliminary floor plan. This plan will typically go through a series of design cycles as we progress to a final plan.

Once we have a plan that meets both our expectations, I will initiate the exterior design process with elevation studies and a three-dimensional model, which you will keep. After you have approved the model and elevations, I will write a set of outline specifications describing the construction and finishes of the house. At the end of this schematic design phase, we will have a preliminary set of floor plans, site plan, elevations, model, and outline specifications and all other information necessary to obtain a preliminary price from a contractor. This exercise will ensure that we are designing within our budget.

After obtaining the preliminary pricing estimate, we will make decisions on modifying the plan or finishes to meet your budget, if necessary. These modifications may result in another round of preliminary design at no extra charge to you.

Construction Documents

Once you have approved the schematic design and the contractors preliminary price, I will prepare the construction documents which are the technical drawings and specifications used to price and build the house. This work will result in a set of properly scaled hard line drawings describing the construction of the project. They are also used to obtain hard bids from general contractor(s) and to obtain permits by the city building authority.


To ensure the best possible price, I recommend bidding the project to several contractors. I will assist you in obtaining qualified bids and negotiating a final price with the selected contractor.


I will assist you with your contract with the builder which will help us stay in budget, protect your interests, and lay the groundwork for a good relationship with the contractor.

Construction Observation

I will make inspection trips to your site during construction and any visits you may request to solve problems or make changes.

Final Note

Designing and building a new home can be a fun and rewarding experience in your life or it can be a year-long ordeal. Selecting the right architect and contractor will make all the difference. I guarantee you that if you select me as your architect, you will always be glad you did.