How can building designers positively impact build costs and timeframes?

When you’re embarking on a development project, you’ll have an idea of what you want to achieve, whether it be a luxurious family residence or a modern industrial space. To turn this vision into reality, you need to entrust it to a skilled and experienced design professional.

This is where the services of a building designer come into play. Unless the intended development is particularly large or complex in nature, a building designer can perform a very similar role to that of an architect, but often at a considerably lower cost. A building designer will work with you from the initial conception of your idea until the point at which building is ready to commence.

Through their understanding of the logistics, materials, processes and timeframes involved in a build, experienced building designers are able to significantly enhance the value of your project and incorporate cost-efficiencies into the design of the building.

So what functions does a building designer actually fulfil, and how can they positively affect the cost of the overall project?

Firstly, they can visit the site of your proposed development to assess its size, location, aspect and surroundings. Looking at a plot ‘on paper’ doesn’t necessarily provide all the information that can affect a new development: a building designer ‘on the ground’ can apply your initial brief to the plot, and combine it with their expertise to help ensure the best possible outcome for your project. One way in which this occurs is by noticing any potential challenges, and suggesting solutions to these that could avoid lengthy and costly delays or changes down the line. On the flipside of this, they can also notice opportunities for enhancements to your initial idea that could increase the value of your completed project, such as the ability to add additional spaces, features or improved accessibility.

Secondly, of course, building designers can conceive designs that are both structurally sound and aesthetically pleasing, and create drawings and 3D models that help the client visualise the final product. This is an exciting phase for clients as it really brings their vision to life. Many people will have ideas about how they would like their development to look, often based on inspiration drawn from other buildings they find appealing. A building designer can work with the client to apply these elements, if suitable for the premises, as well as to suggest a range of alternative and potentially superior options that the client may have not previously encountered or considered. It’s in their breadth of knowledge and attention to detail that the services of building design professionals truly pay for themselves.

Another way in which building designers can positively impact project costs is by calculating labour and material requirements and costs based on the client’s initial ideas and then suggesting efficiencies and alternatives, if necessary, that will ensure the project remains within the client’s budget.

Throughout the entire consultation and design process, building designers will ensure they are working within the relevant building codes and abiding by local council legislation in order to obtain planning permission and a building permit. There’s no point in having a masterpiece of design if council will shoot it down in flames because it contravenes an obscure subclause. This isn’t to say, however, that compromises can’t be met when designs initially fall foul of council guidelines: building designers are adept at working around such hurdles and negotiating mutually acceptable outcomes, particularly when working in tandem with experienced town planners.

At Urban&Co, our in-house building designers can create a large range of designs, from standard to bespoke, across residential, commercial and industrial dwellings. They work as part of an integrated team, alongside our other experts in their respected fields of town planning, interior design and project management. In this way, we are able to determine the viability and set up processes for your project internally, fast-tracking the approval process.

Call Urban&Co on 0409 111 699 or email info@urbanandco.com.au to arrange your free initial development consultation.

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