Thursday, February 07, 2008

Design services

During the past couple of years, we find many of our clients asking the design procedures or process that they were not aware of. It made us feel obliged to share these procedures to you, at least in the way we usually do.

Both, architecture and interior designs, should involve these steps in order to get a better outcome for you. Every design starts with conceptual sketches, ideas or drawings, that may presented up to 3 alternative designs. Thus we would need several preliminary data from you that help us to identify the context and visualize the project. As an initial idea, this step is very important for both sides, since every step ahead is taken in accordance to the agreed concept. Once agreed, we can then proceed with a contract and further design process. Therefore, this first phase may cost upto 15% of total design fees.

The second phase is preliminary design, which will be presented in simple and undetailed measured drawings, and is made in accordance to local codes or regulations. In most cases, this preliminary drawings can be used for applying building permit to the government, bank's loan, etc. Since the process is considered to be a simple applied concept on drawings, this phase may only cost 10% of the total design fees.

The third phase is design development, which may be the longest period of design that involves many discussions with detailed needs or taste. In the process, we also have to decide the engineering (structure, mechanical/electrical, and plumbing) functions to match the whole design concept. There will be many design revisions, a lot of sketches and details that need approvals from both parties, etc. The work load, including the design process and the paper works, may put this phase to cost 40% of the total design fees.

The next phase is to apply all the design development process, discussions, and revisions into construction drawings, as well as the material specifications. Once the development design and construction drawings are settled, we can estimate the project feasibility through a cost estimation plan. This phase's outcome can be used to the contractors' bidding process, and even the construction process directly. These detailed construction documents will be charged upto 30% of the total design fees.

The last phase of the design process is supervising the project construction regularly. We have a maximum of twice/month project visits that aims to assuring the construction process is matched and in accordance to the construction documents, as well as the architect's direction. However, we are not responsible for any on-site changes made by clients or contractors during the process. As our responsibility, this phase would cost 5% of the total design fees, that will be paid when the construction is completed.

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