If you want to choose the right professional for your Fairfield home remodeling or custom build, it helps to understand your options — and a design and build company is one of the best around. The benefits of design-build are numerous (we'll get to those further down). But first, let's establish a design-build definition.
What is the Meaning of Design-Build?
Every home building or remodeling requires the expertise of professionals to design, plan, and construct the project. Who these professionals are, where they come from, and how they work together depends on your chosen project delivery system.
Design-build is one type of project delivery system. In design-build, everyone on your home building team — from designers to project managers, carpenters, etc. — work for the same company. In other words, a design-builder offers all-inclusive services. They have all the in-house skills and professionals your home improvement project needs; this approach differs from other project delivery systems in a few significant ways.
How is Design-Build Different From Other Project Delivery Methods?
Let's take design-bid-build, one of the most prevalent delivery systems in the industry, for example. In design-bid-build, the professionals working on your home come from different companies. You hire an architect to draw up the plans, and once you have them, you seek bids to find a separate contractor who can build them. A lot of responsibility falls on your shoulders as the homeowner in this model. You must find and assess a variety of home building professionals to decide who you want on your team. But your part doesn't end there. When your architect and contractor come from separate entities, you're the only thing connecting them. You must communicate and coordinate with all parties throughout the project. That's a lot of pressure when your home life is already in the air.
Because your architect and contractor don't work directly with one another, communication issues abound. There may even be disagreements over the plans. For example, it's not uncommon for your contractor to estimate a price for your plans that's way more than what you told your architect the budget was. There's also the possibility that, for some technical reason, your contractor can't build the design your architect envisioned. Both scenarios leave you in an impossible position, and you may even have to go back to the drawing board to start all over again.
What are the Benefits of Design-Build?
Design-build has taken off in recent years partly because it solves the problems that commonly arise in design-bid-build. Communication flows freely with a cohesive group of all the building professionals you need; that makes discrepancies between the designs and actual construction less likely. If they occur, your team can easily collaborate to solve them — and you won't even have to lift a finger. Here are a few other benefits this approach yields.
In design-build, your contractor is involved in the process from day one. Having your design-build general contractor engaged in designs means they can voice concerns, provide an alternative perspective, and develop cost solutions from the beginning. As a result, you get a more accurate cost estimate upfront, so you know exactly how much your dream home will cost.
The Construction Industry Institute and the Charles Pankow Foundation proved this outcome in a 2018 study. They looked at over 200 construction projects which differed in size, sector, location, complexity, and project delivery system. They found that design-build projects have better cost and timeline reliability than design-bid-build.
The same study concluded that design-build projects get done 102% faster than design-bid-build alternatives. Your timeline is also less likely to need an extension, so you have an accurate picture of how long your project will take to complete. You can live your life accordingly without worrying about a variable construction timeline interrupting your plans!
In design-bid-build, your contractor can blame your architect or vice versa if anything goes wrong. Shifting accountability means no one takes responsibility for the complete finished product. The opposite is true in design-build. A design-build remodeling group has its name on every aspect of your home. They also assume contractual responsibility for the project. That means it's solely their reputation on the line if you're not satisfied with the result, so they have a larger incentive to blow you away with your new home.
Plus, when you work with the same professionals from start to finish, they intimately get to know you, your needs, and your style preferences. The more they know you, the better your builders and designers can create a home design that suits your lifestyle perfectly!
Using Design-Build for Your Model Remodel or Custom Build
Still unsure whether design-build is right for your home improvement in Fairfield County? Learn more design-build tips and behind-the-scenes information with our Homeowner's Guide to the Design-Build Process (insert link when available). Get examples of how design-build works — and how it could benefit you — as you walk through Raymond Design-Build's five-step process to project success.
Already convinced design-build is for you? Start your search for the right company by scheduling a consultation with us today.