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Design you own home - the correct way

Exciting new projects

You may think this is easy – after all builders produce plans and they aren’t trained in design, so why shouldn’t we be able to do the same. Well, yes you could probably match the quality of a builder without training or experience, but is that really design?

Because an untrained person is not working in the industry regularly, it is virtually impossible to consider all of the aspects that go into producing a high quality residence during the design process. For instance, less skilled designers will draw up elevations of a building once the floor plan has been established. The result is often aesthetically unresolved and unconvincing. An architect is trained to consider a building in three dimensions at the outset, so that when the plan is being developed, many other aspects are being considered simultaneously, such as:

  • How to capture to prevailing breezes
  • How does the sun enter the building so that it is warm in winter and cool in summer
  • How does the design work structurally
  • What type, size and placement of windows is appropriate
  • What type of roof best suits the plan layout and is logical structurally
  • What is the quality of light in each space
  • How do the spaces relate to each other
  • How can the concept be developed to minimise wasted space
  • How do the spaces created related to the outside elements
  • How can the views be captured from inside
  • What materials can be used to minimise cost and maintenance
  • What internal finishes are appropriate and how do they work with each other
  • How do various materials come together in a neat and logical manner
  • Where should the visual focus points lie in various spaces in the building

……. The list goes on, and it is all constantly buzzing around in an architect’s head during the design process. That only cones with knowledge, training and experience!

I guess the analogy that comes to mind is that of a patient not going to a doctor when you have been diagnosed with a serious illness. These days there is a mountain of information available on the net, so why not spend a few hours surfing the net to find all you can about the ailment that has been diagnosed?  Would you be happy with the result? Would you not rather be more  inclined to rely on the experience and training of a fully trained medical practitioner – after all you only have one body!

An architect has had at least five years of undergraduate training before gaining an architecture degree. After that further experience is required to gain admittance to the Australian Insatiate of Architects, so you can trust that qualification to handle your project professionally. Further an architect is required to carry a Professional Indemnity Policy which protects clients against malpractice. One can be confident therefore, that by engaging an architect, you are ensuring best practice and reliable professional service.

Just as a medical practitioner will carry out a very thorough and considered diagnosis and treatment, and architect will take a holistic approach to the design of the residence and deliver a thorough set of documents from which to build. Architects will also superintend the construction process to ensure the builder constructs the building in accordance with the drawings and specifications, to a standard described in the documents and within a reasonable time frame.

Building a house is one of the largest investments during the course of your lifetime so does it not make sense to do it properly the first time?

by Warwick O'Brien by Warwick O'Brien Warwick O'Brien Architects
Read 4200 times Last modified on Thursday, 21 May 2015 13:22