Today's blog was reposted with minor edits to the content from this Houzz article.
Who hasn’t heard that regular trips to the dentist can prevent the spread of tooth decay? Even though sitting in that chair isn’t the most enjoyable way to spend time, most of us know that a dentist has the knowledge and expertise to check all aspects of our oral health. Similarly, residential designers (architects, interior designers and others) bring a wealth of knowledge and skills to make sure all aspects of remodeling and custom home projects go as smoothly as possible.
Talk with almost anyone who’s ever tried to do a construction project without pro help, and you’ll likely hear one statement over and over again: “I wished I had hired a designer.” Even in smaller projects, like a one-room remodel, once you open up those walls, situations arise for which only an experienced professional can apply his or her creative problem solving to save time and money.
Here’s why it’s worth it to hire a designer.
Working With Professionals Will Save You Time, And In Turn, Money
You may not know how structural choices can impact the installation of the mechanical system. Or about options for new materials or technologies that might be cheaper, better or more appropriate than what you are familiar with. Figuring those things out takes time, and lots of it. A skilled professional will have this information at the ready for you.
Plus, with advances in technology, new building envelope techniques are coming on the market with increasing frequency, and new, tougher energy-efficiency requirements are transforming how walls are constructed and bringing an end to many traditional building practices. So it’s more crucial than ever to have someone on your team who understands how your building assembly meets current building code requirements.
Hiring a designer will help ensure that your project meets relevant codes so it can progress smoothly through your municipality’s process. This could save you many sleepless nights and potentially weeks on your project trying to determine what is needed to satisfy the code requirements.
Designers Are The Experts, So They Can Provide Smart Recommendations
The basic function of a designer is interpreting your needs and coming up with a professional plan for any building project. Although you may hire him or her only for this task, the designer will also provide a wide variety of other resources to make sure the whole building process goes off without a hitch.
Depending on your needs and budget, a designer can guide you through the relevant building application process, research planning legislation, assist in the hiring of surveyors and general contractors, recommend subcontractors and manage the construction phase of a project on your behalf to ensure that building plans are accurately followed.
Trying to do this yourself would mean hours and hours of research and potential delays.
Designers Can Educate You And Clarify Any Misinterpretations
Because so much information on your project is communicated using two-dimensional drawings, there are many conventions on how plans, sections and elevations are interpreted. Your project revolves around translating the 2-D drawing to 3-D construction using wood studs, insulation and other materials.
There can be misinterpretations of these drawings, which gives rise to confusion about how building elements go together. Especially if the drawings show something that the contractor might not be familiar with. Or if the contractor is busy and hasn’t had the time to really look at certain parts of the drawings, critical elements of the details can be overlooked. A designer knows how to stay on top of this.
Having someone onboard who speaks the language can prevent costly missteps.
Interior Designers Are Your Advocate
If you’re having problems with contractors on your project, it might be tough for you to verify that they are properly carrying out the intent of the drawings, or even which contractor is actually responsible for the issue.
It can be hard to know where the responsibility for one contractor ends and the other begins. Time and again we’ve seen things get overlooked or improperly constructed early in the process, which affects contractors later in the job. And if that earlier contractor has left to another job, it’s oftentimes difficult to get the person back onsite to fix those mistakes. Plus, it’s costly for new contractors to fix another’s mistakes.
Designers Translate Your Needs Into Functional Spaces
A designer translates your needs to functional spaces but also makes them beautiful. Good designers are consummate three-dimensional thinkers and can use their abilities to find special opportunities in a design that might not easily be understood in two-dimensional drawings. Additionally, they are always keeping up-to-date on trends in local and international design.
If you want a space that has lasting appeal and adds to the value of your investment, you need to hire a designer. Designers have the skills to include the features that will maximize your house, while making sure your project runs smoothly.
Designers Know Other Reliable And Trustworthy Professionals In The Industry
Being in the design business means meeting lots of other pros who also work on residential projects. From structural engineers to painters, your designer probably has quite the network of skilled contractors who can get the job done within the given budget.
And, again, the point here is that the additional cost for a quality design team can mean savings in the long run. I think one of the contractors we are working with said it best with a quote at the bottom of the company letterhead, which reads, “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten.”