When it comes to designing and building homes there are generally two options. Homeowners can utilize the skills of a general contractor or a design-build company. The main difference between the two is a general contractor will focus on the construction side of things whereas a design-build firm will also handle the architectural work along with the building of it. Design-build contractors are able to handle both jobs since they will manage all aspects of the project, from the planning and design process to completion of the project.
General contractors have to hire somebody else such as a draftsperson to come up with architectural plans. This typically results in delays and added costs when compared to a design-build contractor who has a full-time in-house team to handle all the work. The architects take care of the construction drawings and conceptual design plans for your new home or the remodeling of your existing living space. An architect is needed to make sure local building codes are adhered to as well as health and safety issues.
A well-executed design needs to be in place before building can begin. It’s much easier to get things done on time and on budget when architects and builders are working together. A design-build contractor looks after every step of the process from the initial planning stage all the way through the completion of the project. These contractors are able to provide clients with expert detail, design and craftsmanship along with first-rate service. Homeowners also know exactly who is responsible for each aspect of the job and who to contact with any concerns.
When the design and construction phases of a building project are managed by the same company it speeds up the process and reduces costs. You’ll also be treated to the same unified quality control from the beginning of the project until the very end. The project is generally simplified since one contractor is handling the entire process instead of several different people. This includes providing the architects, engineers, plumbers and electricians etc. There’s no need to hire any outside help and take the added time to work out a schedule with subcontractors.
Choosing Between The Two
This isn’t to say the traditional hiring of contractors only is never a good idea though. If you have a specific engineer or architect in mind that you would like to work with then you will usually need to separate the design process from the building stage. Many Design Build companies will work with your chosen engineer or architect, though some may not, so be sure to ask.
Also, when employing separate designers and builders you’ll be able to access the professional knowledge and input of more than just one person. This means more ideas and options may be floating around concerning the project. Although you will have several different people to deal with and pay rather than just one contractor.
Choosing between design-build and general contractors is a personal choice and it often depends on where your priorities lie. Design-build companies are becoming more popular because they generally save homeowners time and money, but your decision may ultimately depend on the complexity of your plans.
Novacon Construction is a Toronto based design-build construction company specializing in home additions and large scale renovations of older homes. When working with a boutique company like ours, you can rest assured you are getting a commitment to personalized service and a world-class building experience that is difficult to match. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
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