Custom Plans

People discussing a new home plan and remodel.

The Design Process

How do I get started?
Clients often come to our office with a decade of magazine clippings or internet articles in an effort to communicate what type of home they wish to build. Other clients have little more than a wish list and a confused look. Our goal is to assemble critical information such as budgetary constraints, site restrictions, architectural style, setting and the message of the home. Consider the following descriptions: Simple, elegant, no frills, modest, sophisticated, economical, asymmetrical, relaxed, and formal. After collecting the necessary elements that will shape the design and function of your home we will begin the conceptual drawings.

How will I be involved?
We invite client participation and interaction! We understand that you are the home owner and you will be the one living there. Likewise, we realize that most people do not have the expertise it takes to create a well designed home. We begin by creating the initial drawings and presenting them to you for review and discussion. Issues and options are discussed at this point . The drawings will progress in a fluid stage moving toward a more refined and detailed plan over the course of several meetings. During this time we strongly recommend that the client meet with prospective contractors who can provide an idea of construction costs. After the design has been finalized structural drawings will be developed.

Will I need Engineering?
During the initial consultation we will discuss whether or not engineering will be needed. Some features in a home do not allow for ‘prescriptive bracing’ and will require engineering. For instance, a large area in the home that is two stories tall without a second floor will trigger engineering. Another common element that will require engineering is when large wall sections have abundant window and door openings. While engineering is an additional up front cost, there is often great benefit. Good engineers can simplify the construction process and actually save money in the field. Design Solutions has trusted relationships with several engineers that collaborate with us to make it a seamless, painless process.

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