The Design | Build process is a popular option for many clients seeking an efficient and collaborative path to a new home or barn. Designing and building a new home or barn will likely be the single largest investment most residential clients will make in their lifetimes. When folks embark on this journey they will find an array of options of how to proceed including working with a design | build firm or hiring an architect and then finding a builder to deliver the project. Construction is complicated and you want to be sure you have a team with experience and one you trust.
Houses and Barns by John Libby combines design and building as an integrated delivery of services. This approach is defined by the Design Build Institute of America as “the method of project delivery in which one entity – the design build team – works under a single contract with the project owner to provide design and construction services.” That’s a great formal definition, but what does it really look like?
For starters, we all sit down and get to know one another. “All” encompasses the owner, designer, builder, project manager, lead carpenter, key subcontractors and any other party that is deemed to have a role in the successful outcome of a project. Is there good chemistry between all parties? Are we open to listening objectively to each other to uncover a real need and solution? We listen more than we speak, because beyond the actual concrete and wood there is an underlying reason folks are engaging us to design and build a house or a barn.
Great, we all like each other, now what? Design informs construction and vice versa. Imagine all parties seated around the table and ready for a feast. Before we can dig in, we recognize that everyone has contributed in some capacity to the feast. Designing and building a house or barn entails the same contribution by all of the stakeholders. The earlier the collaboration, the better the chance of a successful outcome.
So, project delivery from a design | build firm comes in the form of providing integrated design and construction services that are mapped to a client’s needs. The benefits can include design guided by budget, a more informed start when construction begins, efficiency gains from scheduling, budgeting, and subcontractor selection while in design, fast track design-planning, direct connection between the field and the office to resolve details, and expertise and experience in all facets of construction that can be tapped from the onset of the project.
A good mantra is to get it right the first time and Houses and Barns by John Libby has found the Design | Build method of delivering design and construction services benefits all involved.