What does design and construction “design/build” mean?
Design-build, also known as single-source or design/construct, is a method of project delivery in which a single entity, the design/build team, works with the homeowner to provide end-to-end design and construction services. Design-build is an alternative to design-bid-build, in which the design and construction functions of a custom home or remodel project are split, with separate contractors performing separate work under separate contracts.
What are the advantages of the design/build process?
The design/build process for a custom home offers these advantages over the traditional design-bid-build approach:
Singular accountability: One entity is accountable for helping you to stay in budget, schedule and performance but remember it is the homeowner that has the final responsibility to stay in budget with all the choices that must be made with everything that goes into the project. Team work is the key.
Cost savings: Design/build drives out the extraneous costs associated with the dual contracting, scheduling and accountability inherent in the design-bid-build model.
Better results: By combining design and construction expertise on one team, we eliminate the ambiguity that can arise in construction and material specifications. As a result, our design/build team is singularly focused on superb end-to-end performance.
Faster delivery: Single-source design and project management drives out the scheduling delays, change orders and costly missteps that typify the design-bid-build approach.
Peace of mind: Our design/build approach relieves you of the burden of supervising dual contractors, enabling you more time to participate as we turn your vision into a reality.
Should I solicit competitive bids from several design/build firms?
It’s a good idea. But be sure to narrow your search to reputable, licensed design/build firms. Sad to say, the construction industry today is rife with lowest-bid wildcat contractors whose results and final bill can be quite an eye-opener – and not in a good way. Our Workroom contains links to professional organizations and resources where you can learn more about how to find and work with a qualified professional design/build firm.
My remodel doesn’t seem too complicated. Should I attempt it myself?
Only you can determine your likelihood of DIY success, based on your skill set, tools, and knowledge of design, construction techniques and materials, and local residential building codes. Here are three questions to ask yourself:
1. Is it worth my time?
Even minor construction projects can be time intensive. Home remodels that drag on can prove inconvenient or downright uncomfortable depending on their nature and location in the home. Consider first whether you a) have the time to complete the project and b) would be able to live (literally) with the results of a major project delay.
2. Have I captured all hidden costs?
Before you embark on a DIY remodel, consider each step and make sure you have the sufficient tools (or the resources to buy or rent them) as well as the skills to use them without hurting yourself or causing costly damage to existing structures and surfaces.
3. Am I prepared to manage the project?
There’s more to managing a custom home or remodeling project than meets the eye. In addition to the skills and tools to complete the job, you may need to hire and direct subcontractors for plumbing, electrical and finish work, obtain building permits and intermittent inspections, and keep a close eye to your bookkeeping to keep your project within budget. Are you up for it?