When considering a building project, whether it’s an addition, remodel or a new build, it’s not uncommon for people to have no idea where to start, let alone how to create a plan for success. They may then launch into an expensive design service without establishing a relationship with an architect or worse still, without carefully establishing the groundwork for the project.
We understand how daunting starting a project can seem when you’ve never worked with an architect before. That’s why Living Shelter Architects has designed our Pre-Design Consultation as a valuable and easy initial step that will help you establish a clear vision for a way forward.
Why a Pre-Design Consultation is Your Best First Step
Our Pre-Design Consultation is a low cost, no commitment solution that will help you fully understand the requirements, constraints, and potential challenges for your project. This process answers your questions, uncovers the mysteries, identifies the hurdles and costs, setting you up for success for any size and type of project. The first hour of Consultation is free and is where we determine the full scope of the consultation service. We start with a conversation and review your current documents. From this first meeting, we find out the basics of what is important to you – the project you are considering, what your goals and special needs are, what styles appeal to you, and what your budget is. When you schedule this meeting, we’ll send you a questionnaire and list of items to bring to help keep the discussion focused.
What Services Does Pre-Design Consultation Include?
A list of the services included in our Pre-Design Consultation:
• Site visit and review of survey documents• Needs assessment for your specific goals• Pattern discovery and outline writing *• Existing building structural study *• Project specific code research• Guidance in establishing priorities, budgets, and timelines• Exploration of options and opportunities for synergy• Conceptual drawings to outline spatial orientations • Information sharing about healthy and resilient building practices• Suggestions for systems and finishes
*The level of service included in your consultation depends on your specific project type and requirements.
The Benefits of a Pre-Design Consultation
This consultation provides a strategy designed to precisely understand your project needs, then gives findings and recommendations, and a plan to move forward with a timeline and a rough construction estimate to establish your budget.
You will have the benefit of:
• A registered architect’s review and expert opinion on the feasibility of your project - one who has more than 25 years experience working in the Pacific Northwest and on healthy, resilient and ecologically sensitive projects. • An outline that provides the “DNA” for future work - connections, orientations, incorporating healthy building practices, etc.• A discussion on the look and feel of a potential design scheme• Conceptual diagrams of possible layout options• Rough ballpark estimate of costs of construction to establish a realistic budget• A preliminary timeline for design and construction• A report that includes a scope of work for the next stages of the project
What Our Pre-Design Consultation Provides You
At the end of your Pre-Design Consultation, you will have the following:
• Existing documentation reviewed for project feasibility• Your specific project issues daylighted and questions answered• Design options and impacts discussed with your goals in mind• Your project aim and vision outlined and clarified • Conceptual design options outlined in sketches and notes• An understanding of how to integrate healthy and resilient building practices• A scope of work, rough ballpark budget and next steps for realizing your projectThis package will give you confidence in moving forward with your project and position you for a successful design and construction process. You are under no obligation to continue your building project with us, however, we’d certainly be happy if you choose to further engage our design, documentation, and construction administration services.
Our hourly rate for Consultation services are $200 per hour, with the first hour free of charge. You can elect to be billed hourly, or as a lump sum fee. We can outline fees with more clarity once we understand the project type, size and location.
An initial retainer will due upfront. The amount will be determined at our initial meeting and based on your project requirements. The retainer will be credited toward final payment for the services agreed upon and outlined in your Pre-Design Consultation agreement.